Month: August 2015

Surprise(d) – Only 1 Indian University in the ARWU World top 400 ranking!

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Education -  The 2015 Academic Ranking of World UniversitiesI am surprised to note that there is only 1 Indian University among the World top 400 in the ARWU ranking.

The 2015 Academic Ranking of World Universities , most commonly called Shanghai Ranking is now available. Although often debated, its presentation of the world top 500 universities is known worldwide.

The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) is conducted by researchers at the Center for World-Class Universities of Shanghai Jiao Tong University (CWCU). CWCU has been focusing on the study of world-class universities for many years, published the first Chinese-language book titled world-class universities and co-published the first English book titled world-class universities with European Centre for Higher Education of UNESCO. CWCU initiated the “First International Conference on World-Class Universities” (WCU-1) in 2005 and organizes the conference every second year, which attracts a large number of participants from all major countries. CWCU endeavors to build databases of major research universities in the world and clearinghouse of literature on world-class universities, and provide consultation for governments and universities.

http://www.shanghairanking.com/ARWU-Statistics-2015.html

Shanghai ranking – Statistics by University 1st 10

Shanghai ranking – Statistics by region

Shanghai ranking – comparison of universities with Indian Universities

Do you think there something wrong with our educational system compared to other top universities worldwide?

News U Wish to Read – 30th August 2015

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News U Wish to read  - 30th August 2015

Sunday, 30th August 2015

Note: News U Wish to Read is a daily press review compiled and only covers articles published in the press, in the UAE, India and world around. Its purpose is to keep us informed of important news items which we all wish to not miss. Enjoy reading the below news items and links. More sections will come as it takes shape and interest. Your response to this initiative is highly appreciated.

Energy

Opportunities and challenges for the downstream oil sector in the Middle East

The National

Falling oil prices have deeply affected oil and gas upstream, with many projects shelved or put on hold around the world. For much of the downstream sector, though, the current environment also provided cheaper feedstock (crude oil) and a sudden stimulus to demand. Overall, sinking oil prices have served as a shot in the arm for the downstream sector in the short term. The fundamental challenges for the refining industry, however, remain.

Published: 29th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thenational.ae/business/energy/opportunities-and-challenges-for-the-downstream-oil-sector-in-the-middle-east

Diesel down 18%, petrol cut by 8.5% in UAEprojects

Khaleej Times

In its monthly price adjustments, the Ministry of Energy on Thursday lowered domestic prices for petrol and diesel for September. While diesel price was slashed by 18 per cent, the price for a litre of petol was reduced by 8.5 per cent, in line with developments on the international oil market. All pumps will retail diesel at Dh1.86 per litre. Petrol will be sold to consumers at Dh1.89 per litre for E-plus (Octane 91), Dh1.96 for Special (Octane 95) and Dh2.07 for Super (Octane 98), the ministry said, after a meeting of the Fuel Price Committee chaired by Dr Matar Al Nyadi, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Energy, and attended by officials of Adnoc Distribution, Enoc and other oil companies. The new prices will come into effect on September 1, 2015. Last month, the committee lowered diesel price by 29 per cent to Dh2.05 a litre from Dh2.35, while petrol price was hiked 24 per cent to Dh2.14 a litre. E-Plus 91 was increased to Dh2.06 a litre from Dh1.61, and unleaded gasoline 98 was hiked to Dh2.25 a litre from Dh1.83.

BUS_150828-OIL-PRICES-SEPTEMBER-(Read-Only) KT3022827 petrol-prices-sep-2015

Published: 28th August 2015

Read more: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/business/energy/diesel-down-18-petrol-cut-by-85-in-uae

Rise in solar cells production to bring Rs 30,000-crore investment

Economic Times

The increase in manufacturing facility for solar cells and modules will bring in an investment of about Rs 30,000 crore and create 25,000 jobs in the country.

“It is expected that the manufacturing capacity for cells and modules will increase roughly by 2,500 MW and 5,000 MW per annum, respectively.”

“This is expected to create 25,000 jobs in manufacturing sector and bring in investment of about Rs 30,000 crore,” said an official in the New and Renewable Energy Ministry. At present, manufacturing capacity of cells and modules in India is 1,386 MW and 2,756 MW, respectively.

Published: 30th August 2015

Read more: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/energy/power/rise-in-solar-cells-production-to-bring-rs-30000-crore-investment/articleshow/48729959.cms

Other Sectors

L&T Construction bags orders worth Rs 1,563 crore in July, August

Economic Times

Larsen & Toubro (L&T) today said power transmission and distribution business of L&T Construction has bagged orders worth Rs 1,563 crore in July and August. “The power transmission and distribution business of L&T Construction has won orders worth Rs 1,563 crore,” Larsen & Toubro said in a BSE filing. The company said it has received a breakthrough order from Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) for design, manufacture, supply, installation, testing and commissioning of a 500 kV double circuit transmission line in Malaysia.

Published: 25th August 2015

Follow: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/indl-goods/svs/engineering/lt-construction-bags-orders-worth-rs-1563-crore-in-july-august/articleshow/48664676.cms

Politics & Economy

 

Fed, ECB, BOE officials all say they see inflation rising

Gulf News

Stronger growth will pull inflation higher in the US and Europe, according to three top central bankers who voiced confidence that their regions will escape from headwinds that are keeping inflation too low. Federal Reserve vice-chairman Stanley Fischer joined European Central Bank Vice President Vitor Constancio and Bank of England Governor Mark Carney Saturday on an panel at the Kansas City Fed’s annual retreat in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, dedicated to discussing inflation dynamics. Their optimism has not been shared up until now by investors, trading in inflation- protected bonds shows.

“Given the apparent stability of inflation expectations, there is good reason to believe that inflation will move higher as the forces holding down inflation dissipate further,” Fischer said in his prepared remarks. “With inflation low, we can probably remove accommodation at a gradual pace,” Fischer said. “Yet, because monetary policy influences real activity with a substantial lag, we should not wait until inflation is back to 2 per cent to begin tightening.”

Published: 30th August 2015

Read more: http://gulfnews.com/business/economy/fed-ecb-boe-officials-all-say-they-see-inflation-rising-1.1575107http://gulfnews.com/business/economy/fed-ecb-boe-officials-all-say-they-see-inflation-rising-1.1575107

Elephant vs Dragon: Why India’s economy is in a better shape than China

Economic Times

China’s economy is slowing sharply, creating a risk for the global economy. Its debt is pegged at 282% of GDP by some estimates. And that is just one of its problems. Years of state-driven investments have created excess capacity in several sectors. India is in far better health.

Published: 27th August 2015

Read more: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/economy/indicators/elephant-vs-dragon-why-indias-economy-is-in-a-better-shape-than-china/articleshow/48689099.cms

Long way to go for India to become global growth engine: Rajan

The Hindu

RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan has said it will be “a long time” before India can replace China as a growth engine for the global economy, even if it grows at a faster rate. The comments assume significance in the wake of a China-led slowdown hurting the markets worldwide in the recent days, which has led to calls in India for taking this crisis situation as an “opportunity” as the global economy may need alternative growth engines. Asked whether India can replace China as a new growth engine, Rajan said in an interview to BBC, “India is one-fourth to one-fifth of China’s size. Even if we can overtake China in terms of growth rates, the magnitude of the effect will be far smaller for a long time to come.” As per the latest data available with the World Bank, GDP of the U.S. is over 17$ trillion. This compares with China at over 10$ trillion and India 2$ trillion. After Monday’s market crash, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had stressed on the need to further strengthen the Indian economy and said that the present global crisis should be converted into an opportunity for India.

Published: 26th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/business/Economy/long-way-to-go-for-india-to-become-global-growth-engine-rajan/article7582391.ece

Community, Environment & Society

 

MoI Launches “Our Students are a Responsibility” Campaign

Wam

The Ministry of Interior, represented by Traffic Coordination Directorate General, is launching a traffic awareness campaign under the slogan “Our Students are a Responsibility” prior to the start of the new academic year.

This campaign comes as a part of the traffic sector’s initiative in line with the MoI’s strategy aimed at controlling roads, promoting traffic safety and reducing run-over accidents. It also aims to raise the awareness of students in all educational stages; especially children, about traffic accidents, the need to adhere to traffic laws, and to preserve the safety of students from potential road dangers.

Published: 28th August 2015.

Read more: http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395284763044.html

50.2°C (and it’s getting stickier)

Thenational.ae

It’s hot and sticky outside, and it’s going to stay that way for the rest of the weekend. The weather bureau forecast 90 per cent humidity at night, expected to soar to 100 per cent in the event of fog, and the temperature reached 50.2°C in Sweihan in Abu Dhabi on Friday. The spike in humidity was by a change in the wind direction, with the conditions catching many residents by surprise. Meteorologists asked motorists to drive with caution since high humidity could lead to fog. “The direction of the wind until three to four days ago was a southerly wind coming over the desert, so conditions were dry,” said Ahmed Habib, a meteorology specialist with the National Centre for Meteorology and Seismology, on Friday. Humidity is likely to increase over some western areas, the report predicts. While the temperature could go up to 48°C in interior regions, it will rise to 43°C in coastal areas and 35°C in the mountains. Humidity levels will be between 55 to 90 per cent in coastal areas, 45 to 70 per cent in interior regions and 35 to 45 per cent in the mountains.

Published: 28th August 2015.

Read more: http://www.thenational.ae/uae/environment/502c-and-its-getting-stickier

Ban on plastic packaging of food, drugs: NGT seeks Centre view

The Hindu

The National Green Tribunal has directed the Centre and various stakeholders to file their submissions on a proposal that there should be a complete prohibition on the use of plastic packaging in food and pharmaceutical formulations of any kind. “It appears that none of the concerned ministries are prepared to take a decision which according to them at one time was need of the hour in larger public interest. Be that as it may, we will proceed with hearing of the matter and take appropriate decision in accordance with law.” “We direct all the parties before us i.e. Ministry of Health and MoEF (Ministry of Environment and Forests), CPCB and the Board under the Drugs Act and all the other respondents, stakeholders, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India and all the private stakeholders to place a note,” a bench headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar said. The tribunal was hearing a petition filed by NGO Him Jagriti Uttaranchal Welfare Society seeking restrictions on the use of plastic bottle and multi-layered, plastic packages or pet bottles by imposing a ban on packaging of carbonated soft drink.

Published: 30th August 2015.

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/ban-on-plastic-packaging-of-food-drugs-ngt-seeks-centre-view/article7596373.ece

Technology

 

Can’t stay away from phone? Find out if you’re a nomophobe

The Hindu

Do you get worked up immediately when your phone runs out of battery? Or be completely fine with it atleast for a while? Are you a nomophobe? Researchers can tell! US researchers have developed a questionnaire that can determine if you suffer from nomophobia or a fear of being without your mobile phone. Caglar Yildirim, a PhD student in human computer interaction at the Iowa State University (ISU), and Ana-Paula Correia, an associate professor in ISU’s School of Education, have identified four dimensions of this modern-day phobia. In the study published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior, study participants were asked to respond to statements on a scale of 1 (strongly disagree) to 7 (strongly agree). Total scores were calculated by adding the responses to each item. The higher scores corresponded to greater nomophobia severity. The questionnaire includes statements such as- I would feel uncomfortable without constant access to information through my smartphone; I would be annoyed if I could not look information up on my smartphone when I wanted to do so; Being unable to get the news (example: happenings, weather, etc) on my smartphone would make me nervous.

Published: 27th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/science/cant-stay-away-from-phone-find-out-if-youre-a-nomophobe/article7586703.ece

Education+

 

Empowering the biotech sector

The Hindu

With the Reserve Bank of India declaring biotech as a priority sector, the biotech market has acquired new hope and opportunities. Incidentally, furthering this trend, Bengaluru which is already a biotech hub, now has the support of two initiatives from the State Government: Institute of Bioinformatics and Applied Biotechnology (IBAB) which intends to promote education, research and entrepreneurship in bioinformatics and biotechnology and Karnataka Biotech Finishing Schools (BTFS), which plans to enhance the placement opportunities for fresh graduates. IBAB offers a two-year M.Sc. degree in Bioinformatics and Applied Biotechnology which blends Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Programming with Molecular Biology, Microbiology, Biochemistry, Bioinformatics and Systems Biology. It also offers a Ph.D. programme. Students are selected for the course through an online exam followed by an interview. If IBAB takes care of the academic requirement, an initiative like BTFS aims to address the paucity of industry-ready graduates in the field of bio-technology. Initiated by the Department of IT BT and S&T, Government of Karnataka, via the implementing arm KBITS (Karnataka Biotechnology and Information Technology Services), BTFS aims to address this issue. The programme has been designed specially for life science students to give them hands-on training in various soft skills related to the field. The programme is currently in its fourth year and so far, 337 students have graduated from the schools. After six months of academic work, students are asked to intern with a company related to their domain of expertise. This programme is present in 12 institutions across Karnataka: Dayanand Sagar Institution, Bengaluru; Maharani Lakshmi Ammani College, Bengaluru; Siddaganga Institute of Technology, Tumkur; Padmashree Institute of Management of Sciences, Bengaluru; St. Aloysius College, Mangalore; Manipal Life Sciences, Manipal, etc. to name just a few. Students are selected for the BTFS programme through the Karnataka Biotechnology Aptitude Test (KBAT) which is followed by interviews and counselling sessions. Those who have completed a Masters in the subject can join BTFS.

Published: 27th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/features/education/empowering-the-biotech-sector/article7587152.ece

Indian traits of perseverance and adaptability excels in a global workplace

The National

From PepsiCo to Google, Indians are increasingly rising to the top roles in some of the world’s biggest companies. A number of factors are contributing to India becoming a breeding ground for global business leaders, including the country’s sharp focus on education and its citizens’ ability to integrate themselves into different cultures, experts say. The most recent high profile example of the trend came this month when Sundar Pichai, who was born and grew up in Chennai, took charge as the chief executive of Google. Also from Chennai, Indra Nooyi is the chief executive for PepsiCo. Meanwhile, Ajaypal Singh Banga from the city of Pune in Maharashtra leads Mastercard, while Ivan Manuel Menezes, also from Pune, heads the beverages giant Diageo. Satya Nadella from Hyderabad is in charge of Microsoft. In recent decades, a large number of Indians have moved to the United States and the United Kingdom to further their education after graduating from top institutions in India such as the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) and the Indian Institutes of Management (IIM). Those graduates have since risen to leading positions, explains Arun Bala, the chief operating officer at Invenio Business Solutions. “That is one of the factors that have brought Indians to the fore at this time,” he says. “You’re talking about some of the best that have been produced as graduates in India that have moved to the US over a period of about 30-odd years,” he says. “That’s a substantial number of academically bright and highly ambitious youth that have migrated to the UK and US.”

Published: 29th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thenational.ae/business/economy/indian-traits-of-perseverance-and-adaptability-excels-in-a-global-workplace

Sports – Campaign PASS

 

Campaign PASS (Promote All Sports Simultaneously) is an initiative started through my blog to promote all sports(other than cricket – which gets lot of attention) and sports personnel associated to give them more exposure.

Trendsetters in their own way

The Hindu

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At 22 and 27 years of age, Dipa Karmakar and P.R. Sreejesh have been trendsetters in their own way for their respective sport. On Saturday, they were rewarded for their hard work with the Arjuna Award here. Dipa became the first Indian female gymnast to win medals at the Commonwealth Games last year and followed it up with another bronze at the Asian Championships in Hiroshima recently. One of only 3-4 gymnasts in the world to practice the difficult Produnova vault — a double frontal vault — Dipa’s achievements are significant given the constant administrative wranglings and lack of training camps. Sreejesh, meanwhile, has created history in his own way. Coming from Kerala, a state that boasts of multiple winners across sports, being the first male hockey player to be conferred the Arjuna is recognition of a brilliant run of form for the past couple of years. Considered among the best goalkeepers in the world today, Sreejesh’s journey from the backwaters of Kerala to the Ashoka Hall is one of perseverance and grit.

Published: 30th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/sport/trendsetters-in-their-own-way/article7594331.ece

Hope you enjoyed reading the above news items and links. More sections will come as it take shape and interest. Your response to this initiative is highly appreciated.

Regards,

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi

Electronic world – Short Take – Gulf Today Dt 29 August 2015

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IMG_2490

This is the age of electronic communication. This makes things easier for all. Children are well read and if they have any doubt on anything in this universe, they have the Google guru to assist. They don’t need to ask anyone else. They don’t believe anyone else too! Either their friends or what they find from searching on the Internet through Google.

I am amazed and amused by this trend. The other day I was in a shopping mall lift. A family of three came in with their child in the pram. I noticed the cute little boy of 3 to 4 years playing with an Android phone.

I thought he might be playing some games. As I observed closer, I was proved wrong, he was watching videos from a YouTube link active in it. Selecting and changing one after another!

As it was Onam, the harvest festival of Keralites, I went to the vegetable section of the supermarket.

I found a young couple, probably recently married, busy shopping. The boy and the girl were trying to impress each other on their mastery on vegetables and cooking! It was nice to see them trying to make headway in their life journey.

In between the girl too was searching on the Internet for various ingredients to be bought for a traditional Kerala recipe.

As I stood in the queue, I could see her calling her mother to confirm whether the items and quantity to be purchased were correct!

What would we do in this modern world if the mobile or electronic gadgets stop working?

Ramesh Menon

Gulf Today, Short Take Dt 29 August 2015

Onasamsakal – Happy Onam to all

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Onasamsakal – Happy Onam to all

Onasamsakal 2015

Mind Speaks – Elephant Beauty & Elephant Walk Policy

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Mind Speaks - Elephant Beauty and Elephant Walk Policy

Elephants – Temple elephants are an integral part in the life of Keralites. Especially, if you are from Trichur area. The attachment towards the animal and interaction are very emotional and sensitive that they even address them by names and from ancient times there are several stories propagating the love and affection between man and elephant.

An Elephant’s walk is a beauty to watch. However, imagine a situation if it get’s wild. You just have to do a small search on youtube, you will see several videos of attacks by wild and angry elephant’s killing it’s mahout or others who come across.

Out of love and passion for the animal, I too have developed a very important Management Principle based on Elephant, closely following it’s gentle and beautiful walking style which is a beauty to watch and it’s actions terrorising all when it is wild. I have termed it as ELEPHANT WALK POLICY. It is somewhat related to our Gandhian and Hitler’s philosphies and principles.

First part of this principle follows Gandhi. Be mild – as mild as you can till you cannot tolerate any more when you may change over and follow Hitler and be wild and aggressive – as aggressive as you can. Create a wild impact and then let this impact force the results. It may be harmful, but till you shift the gear to Hitler, be a Gandhian. 

Enjoy the photo of a beautiful temple elephant taking bath at the Shiva Temple Ernakulam before a festival.

Beware, I am not mild! I am sure you too.

News U Wish to Read – 25th August 2015

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News U Wish to read 2 - 25 August 2015

Tuesday, 25th August 2015

Note: News U Wish to Read is a compilation of articles published in the press, in the UAE, India and world around. Its purpose is to keep us informed of important news items which we all wish not to miss. Enjoy reading the below news items and links. More sections will come as it takes shape and interest. Your response to this initiative is highly appreciated.

Politics & Economy

Bear attack on Gulf equities

Khaleej Times

Bears took control of Gulf bourses on Sunday in the wake of lower oil prices and Friday’s global selloff of capital markets. The Dubai Financial Market General Index plunged seven per cent to 3,452.5 points, its lowest close since March 30. Its neighbour, the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, recorded a 5.01 per cent decline and closed at 4,286.49 points. Other Gulf countries also followed the bearish mood. Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul index lost 6.86 per cent, Qatar’s main benchmark finished down 4.7 per cent, Oman’s Muscat Stock Market witnessed a 2.94 per cent decline and the Kuwait Stock Exchange suffered a 2.36 per cent loss. Bahrain also declined, but it was the only market that lost below one per cent at 0.37 per cent. Oil prices plunged to their lowest level in more than six years on Friday, closing the day at $45.46 a barrel. The Dow Jones Industrial average also recorded its biggest loss in four years on Friday, closing down 3.1 per cent on growing fears over China’s slowing economic growth.

Published: 24th August 2015

Read more: http://khaleejtimes.com/business/local/bear-attack-on-gulf-equities

UAE stocks get off lightly as global rout persists

The National

UAE investors helped local equities escape relatively unscathed yesterday, even as plummeting Chinese stocks and additional pressure on oil prices provoked a further global sell-off of shares. China’s Shanghai Composite plunged 8.4 per cent yesterday, despite a move by authorities to allow pension funds managed by local governments to buy shares in an attempt to halt declines. The sell-offs hit bourses across Asia. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng ended the day 5.1 per cent down, while the Nikkei fell 4.6 per cent. In Europe stock markets in London, Paris and Frankfurt all ended down more than four per cent. However headline indexes in Dubai and Abu Dhabi ended a volatile day of trading only marginally down, as investors took advantage of attractive valuations to pile back into blue chips. The Dubai Financial Market General Index fell by 6.1 per cent to a new low for the year in the opening minutes of trading yesterday, before rallying into positive territory about midday, and finally closing down 1.4 per cent at 3,401.62.

Published: 24th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thenational.ae/business/markets/uae-stocks-get-off-lightly-as-global-rout-persists

Panic grips markets on ‘Bloody Monday’; global contagion keeps markets under pressure

Gulf News

The Dow Jones industrial average finished down 585 points  on a day of massive swings. The U.S. stock market took investors on a stomach-churning ride Monday, as the Dow Jones industrial average briefly plunged more than 1,000 points and sent a shiver of fear from Wall Street to Main Street. Stocks regained much of that ground as the day wore on. But the slump – part of a global wave of selling triggered by the slowdown in China – reflected uncertainty among investors over where to put their money when the world’s second-largest economy is in a slide. “What’s a company that’s doing business with China actually worth right now? When you’re not sure, you tend to sell,” said JJ Kinahan, TD Ameritrade’s chief strategist. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index also fell sharply shortly after the opening bell, entering “correction” territory – Wall Street jargon for a drop of 10 percent or more from a recent peak. The last market correction was nearly four years ago. U.S. treasury securities surged as investors bought less risky assets. Oil prices fell. But investors also saw opportunity, moving fast and early to snap up some bargains. That helped trim some of the market’s earlier losses. The Dow closed 588 pointsd down. The S&P 500 was down 73 points, or 3.7 percent, at 1,897. The Nasdaq composite had shed 162 points, or 3.5 percent, at 4,543 points. The three indexes are down for the year.

Published: 24th August 2015

Read more: http://gulfnews.com/business/sectors/markets/panic-grips-markets-on-bloody-monday-global-contagion-keeps-markets-under-pressure-1.1571919

Top five factors which pushed Sensex lower by over 1600 points

Economic Times

Global rout extended to Indian markets with the S&P BSE Sensex closing at 1,624 points down. The 50-share Nifty index ended at 7,809 level.

The rupee slumped to as low as 66.69 per dollar, its lowest since September, 2013, as Asian markets reeled under fears of a China-led global economic slowdown.

Published: 24th August 2015

Read more: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets/stocks/news/top-five-factors-which-pushed-sensex-lower-by-over-1600-points/articleshow/48648085.cms

Wall Street suffers worst day in 4 years

The Hindu

The Dow Jones industrial average briefly slumped more than 1,000 points, its most dramatic intraday trading range ever. Investors rattled about China sent U.S. stock indices almost 4 per cent lower on Monday in an unusually volatile session that confirmed the S&P 500 was formally in a correction, even after a dramatic rebound by Apple. The Dow Jones industrial average briefly slumped more than 1,000 points, its most dramatic intraday trading range ever. Monday’s drop followed an 8.5 per cent slump in Chinese markets, which sparked a selloff in global stocks along with oil and other commodities. Wall Street had stayed in s narrow range for much of 2015, but volatility jumped this month as investors became increasingly concerned about a potential stumble in China’s economy and after Beijing surprisingly devalued its currency. Some investors unloaded stocks ahead of the close after looking to make money from volatile price swings earlier in the session. “If things don’t settle down in China, we could have another ugly open tomorrow and you wouldn’t want to be caught holding positions you bought this morning,” said Randy Frederick, managing director of trading and derivatives for Charles Schwab in Austin.

Published: 25th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/business/markets/stock-market-mayhem-wall-street-suffers-worst-day-in-4-years-sp-confirms-correction/article7576209.ece

IMG_2476a

Hope you enjoyed reading the above news items and links. More sections will come as it take shape and interest. Your response to this initiative is highly appreciated.

Regards,

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi

News U Wish to read – 23rd August 2015

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News U Wish to read - 23 August 2015Sunday, 23rd August 2015

Note: News U Wish to Read is a compilation of articles published in the press, in the UAE, India and world around. Its purpose is to keep us informed of important news items which we all wish not to miss. Enjoy reading the below news items and links. More sections will come as it takes shape and interest. Your response to this initiative is highly appreciated.

Energy

Weak outlook as oil prices continue to slide

Gulf News

Oil prices are unlikely to recover in the near term as production continues to rise and demand slows down across the globe. Crude oil in the United States fell below $40 (Dh147) per barrel on Friday, the lowest since 2009. It recovered later to close at $40.45. International benchmark brent was at $45.46, down by 2.49 per cent. According to analysts, the very near term outlook for oil prices is not good. “There is a reasonable risk that in the coming weeks the West Texas oil price will fall into the thirties, brent maybe as low as $40 (per barrel),” said Gary Dugan, Chief Investment Officer at National Bank of Abu Dhabi.

Published: 18th August 2015

Read more: http://gulfnews.com/business/sectors/energy/weak-outlook-as-oil-prices-continue-to-slide-1.1571574

UAE domestic energy usage doubles in 10 years: Study

Khaleej Times

The UAE’s gross domestic electricity consumption has more than doubled over the past 10 years, and is expected to grow even more rapidly over the next five years as the country undergoes substantial population and economic growth, according to a study by management consultancy Strategy &, formerly Booz & Company. The study reveals that energy usage in the UAE has grown at an annual average of four per cent over the past six years, and is projected to increase to five per cent through 2020. A recent forum organised by the Energy Working Group of the UAE-UK Business Council and facilitated by Strategy&, highlighted three key aspects of energy efficiency which comprise of smart cities, building efficiency and water usage. Although numerous initiatives have already been launched in the UAE, implementing additional comprehensive measures and policies can help reap the full benefits of an improved energy efficiency strategy, as challenges cannot be overcome in isolation. While UAE’s increased urbanization is a sign of the country’s growth and progress, it also presents some challenges alongside. According to the UN, 85 per cent of the UAE’s population resided in urban areas as of 2014, and this is forecasted to reach 91 per cent by 2050. The UAE, therefore, needs to have integrated infrastructure planning as a prerequisite to any urban master plan. Per-Ola Karlsson, a senior partner with Strategy&, formerly Booz & Company in Dubai, said one of the best way of doing this, which takes advantage of digitization and the Big Data that urban populations produce, is through the so-called ‘smart city approach’. “This term typically entails integrated infrastructure planning that applies digital technologies to deliver better services and, critically for the UAE, reduce energy consumption. Smart cities allow city planners and managers to improve efficiency at the intersection of different infrastructure sectors, such as electricity, water, transport, telecommunications, cooling and waste.”

Published: 21st August 2015

Read more: http://khaleejtimes.com/business/energy/uae-domestic-energy-usage-doubles-in-10-years-study

Other Sectors

Government, Apollo Hospitals partner to launch telemedicine services

Economic Times

The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology will launch telemedicine services in collaboration with the Apollo Hospitals on August 25, under which people can consult doctors through video link and also order generic drugs online. Under the service, people can visit Common Service Centres (CSC) and fix an appointment for seeking expert consultancy with a doctor. The doctors at Apollo Hospitals will be able to provide consultancy to the patients using the video link facilities, a Ministry official said. The Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) has a network of 1.5 lakh CSCs across the country and Apollo Hospitals will provide the services using the network. To begin with, the services will be launched in 60,000 CSCs across the country. The initiative will benefit the patients in remote areas of the country where there is acute shortage of doctors.

Published: 23rd August 2015

Read more:

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/healthcare/biotech/healthcare/government-apollo-hospitals-partner-to-launch-telemedicine-services/articleshow/48639432.cms

 

Bandhan Bank to fund SMEs, create jobs: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley

Economic Times

Newly-launched Bandhan Bank will fund lakhs of small and medium entrepreneurs, create jobs and act as a response to agrarian poverty, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today. “A great institution is being born in West Bengal,” he said while inaugurating Bandhan Bank here. Bandhan Bank today launched its operations with 501 branches in the country. The company, which started operations as a micro finance institution, got final approval from RBI in June to launch commercial banking operations. Jaitley said Bandhan Bank Chairman and Managing Director Chandra Shekhar Ghosh has said that the priority area of the bank will be small and medium enterprises (SMEs). “It is a landmark initiative in the service of country and state. It is these entrepreneurs in SMEs, many of them in unorganised sector, who today form the backbone of Indian economy. “Small entrepreneurs, from shopkeepers to hawkers, they are generating almost 11-12 crore jobs in this country. The large organised industry is able to generate only a small fraction of that,” Jaitley said.

The Bandhan experiment – a transformation from a micro lender to a full-fledged bank, may shape the India’s future banking, felt who’s who of the country’s financial field who thronged to the city in numbers for the Bandhan Bank’s inaugural programme. The formation of Bandhan Bank in fact, marked a new beginning of Indian banking, which in another one-and-a-half year will see emergence of payments banks and small finance bank. Reserve Bank of India has decided to offer licenses to entities with different capabilities with a single agenda in mid: improve financial penetration. “India is home to several experiments and an MFI turning unto a bank is one such experiment,” former RBI deputy governor Shyamala Gopinath said at pre-launch event on the eve of Bandhan’s inauguration on Sunday.  Bandhan Bank is the first to be off the block as the new change happening in the country’s finance and banking field,” Uday Kotak, executive vice chairman and managing managing director of Kotak Mahindra Bank, said at the event. West Bengal finance cum industry minister Amit Mitra, who was present at the inaugural event, said that Bandhan Bank would serve the twin purpose of women empowerment and poverty alleviation.

Published: 23rd August 2015

Follow: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/banking/finance/banking/bandhan-bank-to-fund-smes-create-jobs-finance-minister-arun-jaitley/articleshow/48640337.cms

Politics & Economy

 

Mohammed bin Rashid issues law regulating partnership between public, private sectors in Dubai Emirate

Wam.ae

Vice President and Prime Minister, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, in his capacity as the Ruler of Dubai, has issued Law No. 22 for 2015, regulating partnerships between the public and private sectors in the Emirate of Dubai. The new law aims at encouraging the private sector to participate in the development of projects and increasing investment in different fields in a way that serves economic and social development in the Emirate of Dubai. It also allows the government to implement its strategic projects effectively and efficiently, as well as harness financial, administrative, technical and technological expertise of the private sector. This will also enable individuals in the community to have better access to services at less cost. The new law also aims to increase productivity and improve the quality of public services, transfer of knowledge and experience from the private to the public sector, as well as training and qualifying Emirati public employees in the areas of management and operation of projects.

Published: 18th August 2015

Read more: http://www.wam.ae/en/news/economics/1395284468285.html

Arabian Gulf markets lose $58 billion as weak oil and global equity rout spark sell-off

The National

Billions of dirhams were wiped off the value of Dubai shares yesterday, as stock markets across the Arabian Gulf lost US$58 billion on a day of calamitous trading. The sharp sell-offs came in the wake of sliding oil prices and a global equity rout on Friday, spurred by fears of a slowdown in China’s economic expansion, a key engine of global growth. Dubai’s stock market led losses in the Middle East yesterday: the Dubai Financial Market General Index fell as much as 7.2 per cent on the day, before closing down 6.96 per cent at 3,451.48, its lowest level since the end of March.“There’s been absolutely no discrimination, it’s red across the board,” said Sebastien Henin of the The National Investor in Abu Dhabi. “Many stocks are back to their lowest level since December or January.” Emaar Properties, the heaviest-weighted stock on Dubai’s headline index, ended the day down 8.3 per cent at Dh6.18, its lowest level since December. The market plunge in Dubai was closely mirrored in Saudi Arabia, where equities have suffered severe losses in the past month in the wake of plummeting oil prices.

Published: 23rd August 2015

Read more: http://www.thenational.ae/business/markets/arabian-gulf-markets-lose-58-billion-as-weak-oil-and-global-equity-rout-spark-sell-off

Inflation climbs to 4.43% in UAE

Khaleej Times

The overall inflation in the country rose to 4.43 per cent year-on-year in July, highest in six years. In a month-on-month comparison, CPI rose to 126.03 points from 125.66 points or 0.37 points.  The chief contributing factors to the rise in inflation were led by food and beverages that rose 1.37 per cent; followed by textiles, clothing and footwear that went up 0.33 per cent and rise of 0.13 per cent in housing rents. Decreases to the CPI came from miscellaneous goods and services 0.12 per cent; medical care 0.07 per cent and furniture and household goods 0.01 per cent. Housing and utility costs, which account for over 39 per cent of consumer expenses, jumped 10.0 per cent from a year earlier in July and rose 0.1 per cent from the previous month. Abu Dhabi hiked electricity and water tariffs from January 1. Food and soft drink prices, which account for nearly 14 per cent of the basket, rose 3.4 per cent year-on-year and 1.4 per cent month-on-month. At the emirate level, CPI fluctuated highest in Sharjah measuring 0.54 per cent; followed by Ajman where 0.49 per cent growth was witnessed. In Dubai, it rose 0.45 per cent followed by 0.31 per cent in Abu Dhabi, according to latest data. Lowest fluctuation of 0.15 per cent was noted in Fujairah, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. On the rise in food prices in July which is reflected on the CPI, a leading retailer Wissal Ahmed Khan, chief executive officer of Alam Supermarkets in Abu Dhabi, said: “The period covered in the survey includes the second half of Holy month of Ramadan, when the promotions launched by the retailers came to an end, to normal price levels.”

Published: 21st  August 2015

Read more: http://khaleejtimes.com/business/economy/inflation-climbs-to-443-in-uae

Community, Environment & Society

 

Ecocity World Summit 2015 to welcome 13 ministers and government officials as speakers

Wam.ae

Ecocity World Summit, ECWS, 2015 has confirmed a line-up of 13 ministers and government officials as speakers, in addition to 22 subject matter experts, up to a dozen from academia, and other visionary leaders from the private sector. The event is scheduled to take place in Abu Dhabi from 11th to 13th October, marking its debut in the Middle East. As part of the city-wide preparation for the summit, the ECWS host committee members conducted their first official meeting on 19th August with over 15 bodies to discuss their anticipated outcomes and collaborative efforts towards the successful launch of the Middle East’s first ECWS edition. ECWS 2015 is to be hosted by the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi, supported by the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Urban Planning Council, Masdar, and will be facilitated by Abu Dhabi Environmental Data Initiative with Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority as the destination host. “The response to the 11th edition of the Ecocity World Summit conference series has been tremendous, and we are very much looking forward to the contribution of our list of speakers, from across the globe. By creating an opportunity for dialogue with the greatest minds in this field, we are confident that the summit will help pave the way for greener cities across the globe,” said Ahmed Baharoon, Executive Director of the Environmental Science, Information and Outreach Sector and Acting Director of AGEDI of Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi.

Published: 23rd August 2015.

Read more: http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395284593286.html

National Archive signs agreement with BP Archive on UAE documents

Wam.ae

The UAE National Archive has signed an agreement with British Petroleum (BP), allowing it to access documents and records about the Emirate in the company’s archive. The agreement, signed on the directives of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of the National Archive, grants the National Archive a 10-year exclusive access to all documents in the BP archive about the UAE. The company’s documents and records relating to the UAE chronicle a critical era in the country’s history. The agreement was signed by Dr. Abdulla Al Raes, Director-General of the National Archive and Peter Housego, BP Archive Manager, in presence of Abdul Rahman Ghanem Al Mutaiwee, UAE Ambassador to the United Kingdom.

Published: 20th August 2015.

Read more: http://www.wam.ae/en/news/emirates/1395284541068.html

Technology

 

Tweets now visible on Google search

The Hindu

Now you can see Tweets in the Google search results as Google has added Tweets to their real-time search results on the desktop. Google’s results will now show Tweets along with standard search results on your desktop, especially when search terms have to do with keywords that are trending on Twitter at the time the search is made, Slashgear.com reported. For example, searching for ‘NASA Twitter’ will not only show you a link to NASA’s official Twitter page, it will also show NASA’s most recent Tweets.

Published: 22nd August 2015

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/internet/tweets-now-visible-on-google-search/article7569448.ece

Education+

 

Government looking to open education, legal services for foreigners

The Economic Times

The government is following a “calibrated approach” to open its education and legal services for foreigners, a move aimed at boosting country’s services sector. Commerce Secretary Rita Teaotia said that work is under progress for opening education and legal services for foreign players. In a country like India, “this (the liberalisation of the services sector) is to be slow and should have a calibrated approach. It is at a very early stage. A roadmap has been prepared,” she told PTI. Explaining about the country’s approach to open education sector, the secretary said, in the beginning, opening online courses could be an option.

Published: 23rd August 2015

Read more: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/services/education/government-looking-to-open-education-legal-services-for-foreigners/articleshow/48639907.cms

Money matters

The Hindu

The Youth Money Olympiad (YMO) is a national level competition open to college students. Its aim is to help students evaluate their personal finance awareness. The winners of the first edition of Youth Money Olympiad were honoured by Principal Mutual Funds and Money Wizards at a function in Mumbai recently. The first edition had the YMO reaching out to more than 7,700 students across 75 colleges, from 41 cities in India.  The students were assessed on the basis of a personal finance IQ test conducted first at the college level, and then at a national level. The participants were given personal assessment reports and were provided with educational material to help them understand personal finance issues. Ranjai Banerji from IIM Calcutta bagged the first prize, while the second spot was shared by students from IIM Kozhikode and IIM Ahmedabad and IIM Ranchi, followed by Janani Srinivasan, a student from Ethiraj College for Women at the third position.

Published: 22nd August 2015

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/features/education/an-interview-with-janani-srinivasan-a-winner-of-the-youth-money-olympiad/article7569374.ece

Sports – Campaign PASS

 

Campaign PASS (Promote All Sports Simultaneously) is an initiative started through my blog to promote all sports(other than cricket – which gets lot of attention) and sports personnel associated to give them more exposure.

Indian Table Tennis League launched

The Hindu

The inaugural Indian Table Tennis League, offering Rs. 1 crore prize money, will take off in May-June next year, the organisers announced today besides boasting that the franchise-based event will be the first ever league to get a dedicated window by world body ITTF. The announcement came after months of planning though many questions still remain unanswered for the league scheduled from May 28 to June 12 in the Olympic year. As of now, the league will have eight teams battling out for the lucrative prize money. Besides that, the teams will have a foreign male and female player each as well as an Indian in both categories. Officials of 11EVEN Sports, the company formed to run the league and which has the backing of Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI), said the event format will be worked out soon. “Today we have just announced the launch of the league. We are still in the process of working out the number of teams, who their owners will be and players’ participation from all around the world. Now that we have got the ITTF nod, we are confident the best players of the world will be a part of this league, which will turn out to be a great learning experience for the Indian players,” 11EVEN Sports director and former player Kamlesh Mehta told PTI.

Published: 20th August 2015

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/sport/other-sports/indian-table-tennis-league-launched/article7562063.ece

Hope you enjoyed reading the above news items and links. More sections will come as it take shape and interest. Your response to this initiative is highly appreciated.

Regards,

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi