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India, Israel ink two agreements

India and Israel inked two agreements in the field of water resources management and agriculture. 
●    Israeli President Reuven Rivlin is on an eight-day visit to India (from 14 November to 21 November 2016). 
●    This was his first ever visit to India and first by any Israeli President in past two decades. 
●    The last and first President of Israel to visit India was Ezer Weizman in 1997.
●    Points of discussions during the delegation level talks were
●    Enhancing agricultural productivity and efficiency.
●    Boosting research and innovation linkages.
●    Employment of applications of science and technology for the benefit of the two societies.
●    Forging strong trade links and investment ties.
●    Building defence ties to secure people of the two nations.
●    Enhancing people to people ties through greater cultural and tourism linkages.
●    Promotion in educational exchanges, which will allow students of the two nations to study in each other’s country, to bridge the bilateral partnership.

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Israel President on 6 Days tour of India

Israeli president Reuven Rivlin arrived  Delh on a six-day visit on Monday.
●    Mr. Rivlin landed in Mumbai and then left for Delhi with a delegation of leading agriculture, defence and university figures of Israel. 
●    He is scheduled to receive a ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Tuesday and will hold bilateral talks with President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
●    Mr. Rivlin is likely to focus on agriculture cooperation between the two sides during the visit. 
●    He is accompanied by Michael Mirilashvili, chairman of Water Gen, one of the most important futuristic companies of Israel that specialises in optimal use of water resource.
●    Mr. Rivlin is expected to visit Chandigarh and Karnal as part of his plan to highlight agri-cooperation. 
●    In Chandigarh, he will inaugurate ‘Agro Tech 2016' along with President Mukherjee and in Karnal he will visit the Centre of Excellence of Indo-Israeli Agricultural Project.
●    This is a special visit to celebrate our 25 years of diplomatic relations between two countries.

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India China to hold joint military exercise in Pune

'Hand in Hand 2016', a joint military exercise between India and China will be held in Pune from November 15-27.
●    This will be the sixth such joint training exercise between the Indian Army and the People's Liberation Army of China.
●    It is held annually, alternately, in India and China.
●    The first exercise was held in China at Kunming, Yunnan province in the year 2007.
●    The aim of the joint training is to share expertise in drills and practices while tackling insurgency and terrorism.
●    It helps in promoting healthy military relations between the two armies.
●    The exercise is planned in three phases at the company level with the respective battalion headquarters controlling the training. 
●    The exercise will be supervised by a joint directing panel comprising senior officials of both the nations.
●    The exercise will be attended by the senior military observers of both the countries.

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NSDA Signs MoU with British Council to Collaborate for Joint Research in Skills Sector. 


National Skill Development Agency and The British Council signed a MoU today at NSDA’s office to collaborate for undertaking joint research projects in the area of skill development. Alan Gemmell, Director- India, The British Council and Dr. Sunita Chhibba, DG-NSDA signed the MoU.
●    This collaboration comes as a part of strengthening the overall research mechanism in skill development space and to encourage research collaborations with various national and international organizations. Under this partnership, The British Council and the National Skill Research Division (NSRD), a research division under the National Skill Development Agency (NSDA) will work closely with each other to build research collaborations between the UK and India over a period of three years in the skilling domain. The topic for the joint research study in first year of collaboration is “Future Skills” that will focus on, understanding labour market trends and identifying future employment in India in selected manufacturing and service sectors in view of changing technology.
●    The partnership aims to promote knowledge exchange and research collaborations between UK and India in the skills space and to strengthen capacity of research organisations in both the countries so as to be able to work in collaborative research environments in the Sector.
●    This kind of collaboration is in alignment with the overall mandate of the recently established National Skill Research Division that will serve as a think tank on research related to skill development and evolve as a credible research organization in skills space at the national level.


 

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India, Myanmar and Thailand Friendship Motor Car Rally, 2016 To Be Flagged-off on 13th November, 2016 

To improve the connectivity by road in South East Asian region and to sensitize the stakeholders of India Myanmar and Thailand Motor Vehicle Agreement regarding potential benefits of such a regulatory regime, a Friendship Motor Car Rally from Delhi to Bangkok is being organized from 13th November to 3rd December, 2016. The Rally will be flagged off by Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Chemical Fertilizers Shri Mansukh Lal Mandaviya from India Gate lawns in New Delhi on 13th November, 2016. His Excellency Chalit Manityakul, Ambassador of Thailand to India and other dignitaries will also attend the flagging-off ceremony.

●    The rally caravan will cover a distance of 5,722 KMs along the IMT Trilateral Highway with about 80 participants from all the three countries, in 20 Indian made vehicles on a journey from Delhi to Bangkok over 19 days. Ceremonial flag off will also be held in other cities and state capitals enroute like Sarnath, Bodhgaya, Patna, Siliguri, Guwahati, Shillong, Kohima and Imphal and in cities in Myanmar and Thailand.The rally that will conclude at Bangkok on 2nd December, 2016, will further cement cultural and economic ties among the three nations and highlight the potential benefits of connectivity and integration in the region and in keeping with India’s focus on its close neighborhood.
●    A trial run of passenger vehicles on the IMT Trilateral Highway up to Naypitaw in Myanmar was carried out during 9-14 November, 2015 in which Indian vehicles travelled to Myanmar on Imphal -Mandalay -Bagan- Naypitaw route and back and Myanmar vehicles joined the Indian vehicles on the return journey from Naypitaw to Imphal and returning to Myanmar.
●    The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, Government of India had initiated a significant step for negotiating a Trilateral Motor Vehicle Agreement (MVA) among India, Myanmar and Thailand (IMT). 
 

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PM Modi Begins Japan Tour to Attend Annual Bilateral Summit

Prime Minister Narendra Modi left for Japan to participate in the annual bilateral summit in Tokyo.
●    In a pre-departure statement in Delhi on Wednesday, PM Modi said that the high-speed railway cooperation between the two countries would boost bilateral trade and investment.
●    During Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to India last year, the east Asian economic superpower committed itself to a high-speed railway line between Mumbai and Ahmedabad.
●    Stating that the India-Japan partnership was characterised as a Special Strategic and Global Partnership, PM Modi said that the two countries "see each other through a prism of shared Buddhist heritage, democratic values, and commitment to an open, inclusive and rules-based global order".
●    Today, Japan is one of the top investors in India. But many Japanese companies, which are household names in India, have been committed to the potential of Indian economy for several decades.
●    The Prime Minister said that in Tokyo he would have a detailed interaction with top business leaders from India and Japan to look for ways to further strengthen trade and investment ties.

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India, Britain sign MoUs on IPR, ease of doing business

India and the UK on Monday signed two memorandums of understanding (MoUs) on increasing cooperation in intellectual property rights (IPRs) and ease of doing business.
●    Both the MoUs were exchanged in the presence of Prime Ministers Narendra Modi and her British counterpart Theresa May.
●    The MoU on IPR was inked between the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) and the Intellectual Property Office of the United Kingdom (UKIPO).
●    It is intended to promote innovation, creativity and economic growth in both countries, an official statement said.
●    It establishes a broad and flexible framework through which both countries can exchange best practices and work together on training programmes and technical exchanges to raise awareness on IPRs and better protect intellectual property rights.
●    The MoU on ease of doing business will harness UK expertise to support India's efforts to climb the World Bank Ease of Doing Business ratings.
 

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British PM Theresa May Visits India

British Prime Minister Theresa May arrived in Delhi on Sunday evening on a three-day India visit. 
●    This is her first bilateral engagement outside Europe since taking office in July.
●    The 60-year-old leader's visit is aimed at enhancing Indo-UK ties in the key areas such as trade, investment, defence and security. 
●    Ms May is being accompanied by 40 business delegates from UK companies which will showcase itself at the Tech Summit in Delhi.
●    Ms May on first day will hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will host her for lunch post the Tech Summit.
●    The two leaders are expected to discuss a possible Free Trade Deal between the countries now that Britain is preparing to leave the EU.

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India-Sri Lanka Meet on Fishermen Issues

India and Sri Lanka have agreed to set up a Joint Working Group on Fisheries (JWG) and a hotline between their Coast Guards to address the long-standing issue of fishermen from Tamil Nadu being arrested.
●    On Wednesday, the Rural Fishermen Society president offered a deal for Indian boats to be allowed to fish in Sri Lankan waters for 85 days every year for the next three years before they are phased out. 
●    Rejecting that offer, fishermen from Jaffna said they wanted an immediate end to “bottom trawling”
●    It is a practice that depletes the ocean’s resources, and refused to return more than 100 trawlers seized by Sri Lankan authorities since 2014.
●    Minister of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare Radha Mohan Singh, Sri Lankan Minister for Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Mahinda Amaraweera, as well Minister of State for Road Transport, Highways & Shipping Pon Radhakrishnan and Sri Lankan MP M.A. Sumanthiran participated in the discussions.
 

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SAMPRITI-2016 Indo-Bangla Joint Military Exercise Begins

Indo-Bangla joint military training exercise SAMPRITI commenced on 5 November 2016 at Tangail, Dhaka.
●    This is the sixth edition of the exercise which is hosted alternately by both countries. The exercise is an important bilateral defence cooperation endeavor between the two countries.
●    The exercise will simulate a scenario where both nations are working together in a counter insurgency and counter terrorism environment under the UN Charter.
●    The participants will initially get familiar with each other’s organizational structure and tactical drills during the exercise.
●    Subsequently, the training will advance to joint tactical exercises wherein the battle drills of both the armies will be practiced.
●    The training will culminate on 18 November 2016 with a final validation exercise in which troops of both armies will jointly practice a counter terrorist operation in a controlled and simulated environment.


 

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