Welcome to the latest bulletin of key policy decisions and high-impact news from India, presented by the Embassy of India, in Washington D.C.
High-Impact News

India Now World's Second-Largest Textile Exporter


India has become the world's second-largest textile exporter after China.  Currently, India exports textiles worth $40.2 billion. Apparel exports contribute 43 percent of India's total textile exports, according to new data; India is now the world's sixth-largest exporter of apparel, up from eighth in 2012.

Marine Product Exports Zoom to Record $5 billion

Led by a sales jump of whiteleg shrimp to the U.S., Indian marine product exports topped $5 billion during the 2013-14 fiscal year, up more than 40 percent in dollar terms. Southeast Asia continued to be the largest buyer of Indian seafood, followed closely by the U.S. Exports of Indian shrimp to the U.S. jumped nearly 60 percent. 


India Tops U.S., China for Assuring Sound Financial Markets

Overtaking the U.S. and China, India has scored top rankings when it comes to putting in place necessary regulations to ensure soundness of the financial market infrastructure, according to a study by banking regulators from around the world.

India, U.S. Green Building Councils Strengthen Ties
The green building councils of India and U.S. said that they will strengthen their partnership and work together for certification. The U.S. Green Building Council and the Indian Green Building Council will sign a 10-year agreement to work on advocacy, knowledge exchange and market transformation. India recently certified its 2 billionth square foot of green building space.

Manufacturing Hits Three-Month High
Indian manufacturing orders hit a three-month high in May, suggesting stronger output in the coming months, as overall factory output growth picked up pace slightly, a business survey showed. The survey comes as business is looking to new Prime Minister Narendra Modi to engineer an economic rebound.

India to Have 3rd-Most Twitter Users by End of 2014
India will account for the third-largest user base on Twitter at 18 million Tweeters by the end of this year, research firm eMarketer said. eMarketer, in its first forecast of Twitter users worldwide, said the Asia-Pacific region will account for 33 percent of Twitter users, compared with 24 percent in North America, in 2014.

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Key Policy Decisions

Green Ministry Launches Online Environment Clearance   

Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar has launched a system for online submission of applications for environment clearance, a move expected to bring transparency in the oft-contentious issue. It will allow applicants as well as clearance authorities to keep a tab on the entire process while adhering to the timeline of various clearances and rejections.   



Indian Govt. to Build 100 Smart Cities

The NDA government plans to kick-start building 100 smart cities, union Urban Development Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu said, using Geographic Information Systems-based town planning, employing the latest technology and infrastructure, integrated waste management and advanced transport systems. The goal for completion is 2022


Reserve Bank Eases Limit on Forward Contracts for Importers      

The Reserve Bank of India has liberalized the amount of forward contracts that importers can book to 50 percent of their average three years' import turnover, or previous year's actual import turnover, whichever is higher. The earlier limit for such contracts was 25 percent.    


Modi Creates New Entrepreneurship Ministry     


Prime Minister Modi has created the first-ever Entrepreneurship Ministry to foster skill development and start-up business acumen. Sarbananda Sonowal has been appointed minister of the new agency. Job creation, skill development and opportunities for entrepreneurship were key promises of election campaign.


Health Ministry to Speedily Implement Free Drug Program

Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has called for streamlining logistics, including procurement and distribution systems, in order to fast-track implementation of free generic drug distribution. The Health Ministry will devise logistical details pertaining to procurement and distribution of free generic medicines in all government-run health institutions.   

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