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India ranked world’s fourth largest app economy

India is rapidly moving into the mobile app age and is already the fourth-largest mobile app economy. 
•    The amount of time Indians spend on apps has also increased dramatically, says mobile-app analytics company App Annie. 
•    In total app downloads per year, only China, US, and Brazil are ahead of India.
•    The annual figure for India is projected to grow by 92% to reach 7.7 billion downloads this year, and further to 20.1 billion by 2020. 
•    China’s app download is expected to grow at a much slower 29% this year, but the absolute figure will be more than 6 times that of India’s at 49 billion.
•    The amount of time Indians spent on apps in the first quarter of 2016 more than doubled compared to that in the first quarter of 2014. 
•    In retail apps, the time spent grew by 11.5 times during the same period, driven by e-commerce majors like Flipkart-Myntra, Amazon, and Snapdeal. 
•    The time spent on video streaming apps grew by 7.4 times, with YouTube and Hotstar leading the way.

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India was placed at 91st position in 2016 Networked Readiness Index (NRI)

India was placed at 91st position in the Networked Readiness Index (NRI) 2016 that was released by the Geneva-based World Economic Forum (WEF) on 6 July 2016. The index was released as the part of the WEF’s Global Information Technology Report 2016.
It measures countries’ success in creating the necessary conditions for a transition to a digitised economy and society.
•    It finds seven countries are excelling when it comes to economically benefiting from investments in information and communications technologies
•    Finland, Switzerland, Sweden, Israel, Singapore, the Netherlands and the US are leading the world when it comes to generating economic impact from investments in information and technology.
•    Singapore leads the Index followed by Finland, Sweden, Norway and the United States.
•    India (91st) was ranked the lowest among the BRICS countries- Russia (41st), China (59th), South Africa (65th) and Brazil (72nd). 
•    The upper echelons of the NRI continue to reflect a strong correlation between networked readiness and per capita income, roughly 75% of the countries show a score improvement in 2016. 
•    Convergence, at the global and regional level, remains elusive, with four regions – Eurasia, Emerging Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan (MENAP) group, and sub-Saharan Africa.
•    Europe remains at the technology frontier; seven of the top 10 NRI countries are European.
•    Several Eastern European countries, notably the Slovak Republic, Poland and the Czech Republic made big strides landing spots in the NRI top 50.
•    The Eurasia region continues its upward trajectory, with the average NRI for the region increasing significantly since 2012.
•    Malaysia leads the Emerging Asian economies in 2016 and moves up one spot to 31st position overall.
•    The top five in the Asian region in terms of overall ICT readiness remain Malaysia, Mongolia, Thailand, China and Sri Lanka.
•    The performance range by countries in the Latin America and Caribbean region remains widely dispersed with almost 100 places between Chile (38th) and Haiti (137th).
•    The United Arab Emirates (26th) and Qatar (27th) continue to lead the Arab world in networked-readiness.
•    The NRI also sees several sub-Saharan African countries among the top upward movers, including South Africa (65th), Ethiopia (120th) and Côte d’Ivoire (106th).
•    India’s position on the list has come down for the fourth consecutive year in a row in 2016 from 89th in 2015, 83rd in 2014 and 68th in 2013. 
•    In different parameters of Index, India has scored better in terms of political and regulatory environment (78th position). 
•    It ranked very high (8th) place in terms of affordability. 
•    It scored worse in terms of business and innovation environment (110th). 
•    In terms of infrastructure, it scored worse place at 114th position.

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The Jawaharlal Nehru Port (JNPT) at Nhava Shevahas become the first port in India to implement logistics data bank tagging system of containers.

 

Jawaharlal Nehru Port on 1 July 2016 became the first port in India to implement logistics data tagging of containers.
The implementation of the logistics data bank tagging of containers will help importers/exporters track their goods in transit through logistics data bank service.
•    A Radio Frequency Identification Tag (RFID) will be attached to each container. The containers will be tracked through RIFD readers installed at different locations.
•    This will provide the Visibility and Transparency of the EXIM Container Movement by covering the entire movement through rail or road till the Inland Container Depots (ICDs) and Container Freight Stations (CFSs).
•    The service will integrate the information available with various agencies across the supply chain to provide detailed real time information within a single window.
•    This will help in reducing the overall lead time of the container movement across the western corridor and lower the transaction costs incurred by shippers and consignees.
•    Jawaharlal Nehru Port is the largest container port in India.
•    It is located east of Mumbai in Maharashtra. It is situated on the Arabian Sea and is accessed via Thane Creek.
•    The port is also known as Nhava Sheva.
•    Its common name derives from the names of Nhava and Sheva villages that were situated there.
•    The port is also the terminal of Western Dedicated Freight Corridor proposed by Indian Railways.

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India ranked 35th among 160 countries in Logistics Performance Index (LPI)

In the recently released bi-annual Logistics Performance Index (LPI) 2016 of World Bank Group, India ranked 35th among 160 countries.
India has improved its ranking in the World Bank Group's bi-annual "Logistics Performance Index 2016", jumping from 54th in 2014 to 35th in 2016. 
•    This was announced by the World Bank Group in its recent launch of the report. 
•    In the latest ranking India has gone past countries like New Zealand, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, Iceland, Latvia and Indonesia who were ahead of it in the index. India's jump of 19 positions in the ranking demonstrates the commitment of various Ministries and agencies of Government of India to make it easy to do business in India.
•    Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President of World Bank met the Prime Minister of India recently and congratulated him on this achievement. 
•    The World Bank studies the policy regulation as well as supply chain performance outcomes across six sub-indices of the Logistics Performance Index and ranks countries based on their performance in all the indices. 
•    It is a perception survey based on the feedback of operators on the ground as they are the people who can best assess the aspects of logistics performance.
•    Feedback of companies responsible for moving goods around the world like multinational freight forwarders and express carriers is taken on a structured online survey. 

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India was ranked low at 105th position out of 130 countries globally on the 2016 Human Capital Index (HCI)


The World Economic Forum (WEF) on 28 June 2016 released the Human Capital Report 2016.
•    The WEF prepared the report in collaboration with Mercer, an American global human resource and related financial services consulting firm.
•    The report presents an analysis by focusing on a number of key issues that can support better design of education policy and future workforce planning.
•    The Human Capital Index 2016 ranks 130 countries on how well they are developing and deploying their human capital potential.
Top ten Countries in the Human Capital Index are:
•    Finland (1)
•    Norway (2)
•    Switzerland (3)
•    Japan (4)
•    Sweden (5)
•    New Zealand (6)
•    Denmark (7)
•    The Netherlands (8)
•    Canada (9)
•    Belgium (10)
Bottom ten Countries in the Human Capital Index are:
•    Lesotho (121)
•    Senega (122)
•    Côte d'Ivoire (123)
•    Burundi (124)
•    Guinea (125)
•    Mali (126)
•    Nigeria (127)
•    Chad (128)
•    Yemen (129)
•    Mauritania (130)

India occupied the 105th position among the 130 countries surveyed in the Index. In 2015, India's position was 100th among the 124 countries surveyed in the Index.
Telecom-to-energy conglomerate Reliance Industries (RIL) and India’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) have signed Subscription and Shareholders’ Agreement to set up payments bank.
Telecom-to-energy conglomerate Reliance Industries (RIL) and India’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) have signed Subscription and Shareholders’ Agreement to set up payments bank. 
•    As per the agreement, RIL will be the promoter with a 70 per cent equity contribution in the payments bank and SBI as joint venture will have 30 per cent equity contribution. 
•    RIL-SBI combine was among the 11 entities that were in August 2015 were given licence by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to start a payments bank. 
•    So far two of these – Cholamandalam Investment and Finance Co and Sun Pharma, IDFC Bank and telecom operator Telenor have decided to shelve plans of launching payments bank. 
•    Payments banks are small deposit-taking institutions that can accept deposits (initially up to 1 lakh rupees per individual). 
•    Besides, they will offer Internet banking, facilitate money transfers and sell insurance and mutual funds by piggy-backing on existing retail or other networks. 
•    They can also issue ATM/debit cards, but not credit cards. However, they are also not allowed to lend. 
•    Instead, they can invest 75% of their deposits in short-term government bonds.

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India ranked 105th WEF's Human Capital Index

India has been ranked 105th out of 130 countries on the World Economic Forum's Human Capital Index, which measures countries’ ability to nurture, develop and deploy talent for economic growth. Finland, Norway, and Switzerland hold the top three positions (respectively), utilizing around 85 per cent of their human capital. 

•    The index has been released by Geneva-based World Economic Forum (WEF). 
•    While other countries like China (71) and Bangladesh (104) were ranked above India. 
•    Pakistan ranks further lower at 118th place. 
•    Countries ranked below India include Nepal, Myanmar, Haiti, Malawi and Burundi while Mauritania, Yemen, Chad, Nigeria and Mali are placed in the bottom-five with below 50 % talent optimization. 
•    India was ranked 100th last year out of total 124 countries included in the 2015 index.

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Sweden opens its first ever electric road

In a bid to promote green energy, the world's first electric road is now under testing in Sweden. 
•    The road near the city of Gävle in central Sweden will serve as a testing ground for electrically-powered trucks which will operate under real traffic conditions.
•    The hybrid electric trucks from Scania will operate on the 2 km strip on the E16 motorway using conductive technology developed by Siemens.
•    The technology behind the concept allows the trucks to operate as electric vehicles when on the electrified road and as regular hybrid vehicles when on other stretches.
•    Scania trucks are Euro 6-certified and run on bio fuel. 
•    The vehicle receives its electrical power from a pantograph power collector which is in turn connected to overhead power lines that are above the right-hand lane of the road. 
•    The trucks are capable of freely connecting and disconnecting from the overhead wires while in motion.
•    If the truck goes outside the electrically-powered lane, the pantograph is disconnected and the truck then runs on the combustion engine or the battery-powered electric motor. 
•    The same technique applies if the driver wants to overtake another vehicle in a different lane.
•    The project is seen as a key component in achieving the country's ambition of an energy-efficient and fossil-free vehicle fleet by 2030.

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National men's relay sets new national record

The Indian men's 4x400m relay team on 12 June 2016 created a new national record, clocking 3:02.17 at the International Sprint and Relay Teams Cup at Erzurum, Turkey.
The team improved the previous record of 3:02.62 set at the 1998 Asian Games in Bangkok.
On the other hand, the Indian women's 4x400m relay team clocked 3:30.16 and jumped to world No 12 in the rankings. In the 2016 South Asian Games, the women's relay team finished the race with a timing of 3:35.44 to win the gold. They also recorded their fastest time of 3:29.08 in the 2016 IAAF World Championships which took place in Beijing.
•    The 4×400 metres relay or long relay is an athletics track event in which teams consist of four runners who each complete 400 metres or one lap.
•    It is traditionally the final event of a track meet.
•    Relay race runners typically carry a relay baton which they must transfer between teammates.
•    Runners have a 20 m box in which to transfer the baton.
•    Unlike the 4 × 100 m relay, runners in the 4 × 400 typically look back and grasp the baton from the incoming runner.
•    Internationally, the U.S. men's team has dominated the event, but have been challenged by Jamaica in the 1950s and Britain in the 1990s.

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KL Rahul 1st Indian to make century on ODI debut

Opener Lokesh Rahul created history when he became the first Indian to score a hundred on One-Day International debut. 
•    Overall, he became the 11th player to achieve the feat on debut.
•    Karnataka batsman Rahul took 115 balls to reach the landmark as he steadily carried India beyond the finish line, chasing 169 for a win in the first ODI against Zimbabwe in Harare. 
•    His knock was studded with seven fours and a mighty six that was also the winning runs for the visiting side.
•    India began their chase with two debutant openers in Rahul and Karun Nair. 
•    The visitors were jolted early as Nair threw away his wicket playing a rash shot in the fifth over.
•    Ambati Rayudu joined Rahul and the two slowly but steadily carried forward as the pair put on an unbeaten 162-run partnership to see India home. Rahul remained not out on 100 while Rayudu scored an unbeaten 62.

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India Rank 141 on Global Peace Index

India was ranked low at 141st place on a Global Peace Index  making it less peaceful than countries like Burundi, Serbia and Burkina Faso – with violence taking a $680-billion toll on its economy in 2015. 
•    In a ranking of 163 countries, compiled by global think tank Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), Syria has been named as the least peaceful, followed by South Sudan, Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia.
•    On the other hand, Iceland was ranked as the world's most peaceful country, followed by Denmark and Austria. 
•    India has moved up two position, from 141st last year, but the study said the country's peace score has "deteriorated" over the past year – which means the slight rise in ranking could be due to worse performance of others.
•    India's scores for ongoing domestic and international conflict and militarization have deteriorated slightly. 
•    The country remains vulnerable to acts of terror and security threats at its shared border with Pakistan. 
•    The GPI 2016 ranks 163 independent states and territories according to their level of peacefulness. 
•    The economic impact of violence on the global economy touched $13.6 trillion or 13.3 percent of gross world product. 
•    The amount is also equivalent to 11 times the size of global foreign direct investment, it added.

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