Special Current Affair for IBPS Exams : India & The World Part - 6

Special Current Affair for IBPS Exam

Topic: India & The World [Part - 6]

  • India and United Kingdom
  • India and Netherlands


An MoU was signed between Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare India, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Secretary of State for Health, UK, Jeremy Richard Hunt on cooperation in the field of health sector on 19 May 2013 at Geneva between the Government of India and the Government of the United Kingdom. The aim of the agreement is promotion of wide-ranging cooperation in the health sector between the two countries. The main areas identified for cooperation in the MOU include:

  • Promoting exchange on healthcare policy in India and the UK;
  • Human resources for Health;
  • Regulatory issues;
  • Health technology development:
  • Primary healthcare;
  • Strengthening of public infrastructure and capacity;
  • Health security, including cooperation on infectious diseases, emerging infections and drug resistance.

India, at present, is the strategic partner to the UK and has been a recipient of UK’s bilateral assistance in the form of grants since 1975. The aid agency of the UK is Department for International Development (DFID).

Super Priority Visa Service for Travellers from India

Britain on 12 May 2013 launched super priority same-day visa service for urgent travellers from India. Britain has launched this kind of service anywhere in the world. The super priority visa service was announced by British Prime Minister David Cameron during his visit to India in February 2013.

The Main points of new Visa Service are as following:

  • For the first time, Indian visitors will get the option of a same-day visa to the UK. This new service can be particularly useful for business.
  • The Super Priority Visa is an optional service, which costs an additional fee of 600 pounds in addition to the standard fee for the type of visa which was applied for.
  • Applicants are required to submit their applications after completing an online form, by appointment, before 9. 30 am. If an application is successful, the applicant can collect the visa by 5.30 pm the same day in New Delhi or by 6.30 pm the same day in Mumbai.

The new service is available to customers who applies for a six-month or two-year multiple entry visit visa (excluding student visitors) and who have travelled before to the UK, Australia, US, New Zealand, Canada or a Schengen country within the last five years. The service is also available to visa applicants sponsored by companies who are members of the UK’s Business Express Programme. As per an estimate, India is considered as the UK’s biggest visa operation in the world. It processes around 400000 applications each year and most of the applications are approved (97 percent of UK Business visit visas and 86 percent of visit visas).

India and Netherlands

India and Netherlands on 14 May 2013 signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Technical Cooperation in the field of Spatial Planning, Water Management, and Mobility Management at Hague, Netherlands during the visit of Kamal Nath, Minister for Urban Development and Parliamentary Affairs. The Memorandum of Understanding will enable greater cooperation in the areas of - Spatial planning, urban and regional planning and development and architecture; Water management in terms of Water supply and sanitation and governance structures; Transport management and transport systems and infrastructure; Energy-efficient and sustainable built forms.

Under the MoU, a Joint Working Group would be set up that would prepare annual work programmes. It was decided that the first seminar under the MoU would take place in June 2013 at Rotterdam to be followed by another seminar in India later in the year. During Kamal Nath’s visis it was noted that the bilateral trade between India and Netherlands is increasing at a brisk pace and it was agreed that there is a need to expand the trade basket to other important areas such as Urban Development.