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22nd May, 2024

Polo Ponies, Global AI summit, XP 100, TReDS, BSE, FIEO, State and Trends of Carbon Pricing 2024” report, ICRA, Copilot+ PCs’, GalaxEye, F-16, May 21: National Anti-Terrorism Day, May 21: International Tea Day, May 21: World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, Tata Steel, RITES, Airbus, President of the Dominican Republic, golden-backed frog

  1. Manipur Government Allocates 30 Acres Grassland to Protect Iconic ‘Polo Ponies’
  2. World’s top AI firms make new safety commitments at Global AI summit in Seoul
  3. IOCL Exports 1st consignment of India’s 1st Premium Fuel “XP100” to Sri Lanka
  4. TREDS Platform RXIL Crosses Rs 1 lakh crore in MSME Invoice Financing
  5. BSE market cap hits $5 trillion mark for first time; adds last trillion in just 6 months
  6. India’s merchandise exports may grow to $500-510 bn in FY25: FIEO
  7. World Bank’s annual “State and Trends of Carbon Pricing 2024” report
  8. GDP growth to dip to a four-quarter low of 6.7% in Q4 FY2024 from 8.4% in Q3: ICRA
  9. Microsoft introduces ‘Copilot+ PCs’ featuring advance AI
  10. GalaxEye successfully tests Synthetic Aperture Radar technology
  11. USA launched an AI-powered fighter jet version of the F-16
  12. May 21: National Anti-Terrorism Day
  13. May 21: International Tea Day
  14. May 21: World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development
  15. Tata Steel partners with National Grid to create a green steel project in the UK.
  16. RITES Signs Pact to Supply Coaches to Bangladesh
  17. Airbus Helicopters and SIDBI sign an MoU for helicopter financing in India
  18. Luis Rodolfo Abinader has been re-elected as the President of the Dominican Republic
  19. Sri Lankan golden-backed frog rediscovered in India at Koundinya Wildlife Sanctuary

Table of Content

State News

  1. Manipur Government Allocates 30 Acres Grassland to Protect Iconic ‘Polo Ponies’
      • What: The Manipur Government, in collaboration with various equestrian groups, has taken decisive steps to safeguard the endangered Manipuri Pony (a horse breed), also known as Meitei Sagol.
      • These ponies hold immense historical and cultural value in Manipur.
      • Tell me more:
        • Policy Framework: In 2016, the Manipuri Pony Conservation and Development Policy (MPCDP) was established to protect this breed.
        • Population Decline: Despite their significance, the Manipuri Pony population has drastically declined over the years due to factors like urbanization, loss of grazing land, disease.
        • In 2019, there were only 1,089 Manipuri Ponies, down from 1,898 in 2003
          Source: Economic Times
Knowledge Nuggets -
Meitei Sagol:
- They are one of seven recognised horse and pony breeds of India.
- Others breeds: Marwari Horse, Kathiawari Horse, Zanskari Pony,Spiti Pony, Bhutia Pony and Kachhi-Sindhi Horse.
- Physical appearance: They are of short height, however, known for their unique stamina, agility, intelligence, speed, etc.

International News

  1. World’s top AI firms make new safety commitments at Global AI summit in Seoul
      • What: At a recent global AI summit in Seoul, sixteen leading companies involved in artificial intelligence, including Alphabet (Google), Meta, Microsoft, and OpenAI, have made significant safety commitments to ensure the responsible development of AI technology.
      • Tell me more:
        • Summit hosted by: Britain and South Korea
        • Summit Venue: Seoul (South Korea)
        • Steps for Safety Frameworks: The participating companies pledged to publish safety frameworks detailing how they will measure the risks associated with cutting-edge AI models.
        • Mitigating Risks: The companies voluntarily agreed not to develop or deploy AI models if the risks cannot be sufficiently mitigated. This commitment emphasizes the importance of public safety.
          Source: The Hindu

Banking and Economy

  1. IOCL Exports 1st consignment of India’s 1st Premium Fuel “XP100” to Sri Lanka
      • What: Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL), exported its first-ever consignment of XP100, India’s 1st superior 100-octane premium fuel, from Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT), Mumbai, to Lanka IOC, a subsidiary of IOCL in Sri Lanka.
      • Why: This move aims to provide customers in Sri Lanka with high-performance fuel that enhances the efficiency and longevity of their machines.
        • The move also aims to improve India’s fuel export to the world.
      • Tell me more:
        • Made in India: The fuel is domestically developed, and it leverages Indian Oil’s indigenous Octamax Technology, designed for high-end vehicles.
        • The delivery to Sri Lanka marks the third time Indian Oil has exported a product offshore, showcasing its potential to deliver quality products from India to the world.
          Source: Indian Oil
Knowledge Nuggets -
About Lanka IOC
- Lanka IOC (LIOC), a subsidiary of Indian Oil in Sri Lanka, is the only private oil company managing retail outlets in the country.
- Established in 2003, it has grown significantly, becoming one of the largest listed companies in Sri Lanka.
- LIOC ensures energy security and supply stability for Sri Lanka and is listed on the Colombo Stock Exchange.
  1. TREDS Platform RXIL Crosses Rs 1 lakh crore in MSME Invoice Financing
      • What: India’s 1st Trade Receivables electronic Discounting System (TREDS) exchange platform, Receivables Exchange of India Limited (RXIL), has financed over 50 lakh Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise (MSME) invoices totaling Rs 1 lakh crore.
        • TReDS is an online platform that allows MSME suppliers to discount their bills and invoices.
      • Tell me more:
        • RXIL has over 25,000 registered MSMEs.
        • It has strategic partnerships with state governments for timely and competitive payments.
        • In FY24, RXIL’s monthly invoice financing volumes exceeded Rs 6,000 crore. The platform aims to finance Rs 75,000 crore worth of invoices in FY25.
          Source: The Hindu Business Line
Knowledge Nuggets -
- RXIL is a joint venture (JV) promoted by the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), NSE Investments Limited, State Bank of India (SBI), ICICI Bank, and YES Bank Limited.
- RXIL is the 1st entity to receive the Reserve Bank of India (RBI)'s approval to launch the TReDS Exchange Platform in 2016.
  1. BSE market cap hits $5 trillion mark for first time; adds last trillion in just 6 months
      • What: The Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) has achieved a significant milestone by crossing the $5 trillion market capitalization mark for the first time.
        • Market capitalization is the aggregate valuation of the company based on its current share price and the total number of outstanding stocks.
      • Why: The strong growth sentiment for the market, along with new listings on the exchange, has fueled this remarkable increase.
      • Tell me more:
        • BSE’s total market capitalization reached the $4 trillion mark in November 2023.
        • It added another $1 trillion in just six months, racing past the $5 trillion level.
        • Notably, all BSE-listed firms had already reached the market cap of $1 trillion back in May 2007, doubling to $2 trillion by July 2017, and then hitting the $3 trillion mark in May 2021.
        • Other than India, the US, China, Japan, and Hong Kong have a total market capitalization of more than $5 trillion.
          Source: Business Today
  2. India’s merchandise exports may grow to $500-510 bn in FY25: FIEO
      • What: According to the Federation of Indian Export Organizations (FIEO), the apex body for exporters in India, merchandise exports from India are expected to increase around 14% i.e. to USD 500-510 billion in FY25(2024-25).
      • Tell me more:
        • In FY24: However, India’s merchandise export saw a contraction of 3% with USD 437 billion in FY24.
          • India’s total exports stood at USD 788 billion in FY24.
        • In FY 25: FIEO has estimated that services exports will reach USD 390-400 billion in FY25.
          • This will be driven by sectors such as engineering, and advertising services.
        • Thereby, the net worth of total exports from India (merchandise (USD 500-510 billion) and services (USD 390-400 billion) will be around USD 890-910 billion in FY25.
        • Key points:
          • As per FIEO, the traditional markets of India which are: United States of America (U.S.A.) and Europe, and Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) of India with Australia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and European Free Trade Association (EFTA) will give boost to exports sector of India.
          • Key sectors promoting growth: machinery, electrical and electronic, automobile, pharma, and biotechnology, among others.
            • These sectors will receive benefits from the Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) schemes
          • Rise in Credit Demand: Demand for credit has increased due to increased inflation, high commodity prices and significant increase in sea and freight prices.
          • It underscored that US has imposed new tariffs on Chinese goods such as Electronic Vehicles (EVs), Batteries, and high-end technology products, among others. So, China needs new markets with lower tariffs.
            • Thus, India needs to seize this opportunity and fix the supply gap.
        • Key Recommendations:
          • FIEO has suggested that Government of India (GOI) need to establish an export development fund in order to support Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in India, with budgetary allocation of 1% of previous year exports.
          • Target: It is expected that there will be an increase in Indian exports from USD 778 billion (2023-24) to USD 2000 billion by 2029-30.
          • Need for setting sub targets: It emphasized that a sub-target for exports within overall target for the Priority Sector Lending (PSL) is required.
            Source: Business Standard

Report and Indices

  1. World Bank’s annual “State and Trends of Carbon Pricing 2024” report
      • What: In 2023, carbon pricing revenues reached a record $104 billion, according to the World Bank’s annual “State and Trends of Carbon Pricing 2024” report.
        • Carbon pricing is a policy tool aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), which contributes to climate change.
        • It involves putting a price on carbon emissions, either directly through taxes or indirectly through cap-and-trade systems.
      • Tell me more:
        • This report highlights that there are now 75 carbon pricing instruments in operation worldwide.
          • Carbon pricing instruments refer to the various mechanisms and policies implemented by governments or organizations to put a price on carbon emissions.
        • Over half of the collected revenue ($52 Billion of $104 Billion) was used to fund climate and nature-related programs.
        • While traditional sectors like power and industry continue to dominate, carbon pricing is increasingly being considered in new sectors such as aviation, shipping, and waste.
        • However, despite the record revenues and growth, global carbon price coverage and levels remain too low to meet the Paris Agreement goals.
        • Currently, less than 1% of global greenhouse emissions are covered by a direct carbon price at or above the range recommended by the High-level Commission on Carbon Prices to limit temperature rise to well below 2ºC. Closing this implementation gap.
        • Right now, less than 1% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions are taxed at a rate that meets expert recommended by the High-level Commission on Carbon Prices to keep global warming below 2ºC.
          • To help fight climate change, we need to increase this coverage significantly.
            Source: World Bank
Knowledge Nuggets -
About the Paris Agreement
It is a landmark international treaty aimed at combating climate change. Here are some key aspects:
- Temperature Goals: The central aim of the agreement is to limit global temperature rise this century: Well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. But Pursue efforts to limit the increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Achieving these goals is crucial to prevent severe climate impacts.
- Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs): All Parties (countries) are required to submit their best efforts through NDCs. These contributions outline their commitments to reduce emissions and strengthen efforts over time. Regular reporting on emissions and implementation efforts is also mandatory.
- The agreement was adopted on 12 December 2015 at COP 21 in Paris.

GDP Forecasts

  1. GDP growth to dip to a four-quarter low of 6.7% in Q4 FY2024 from 8.4% in Q3: ICRA
      • What: According to Investment Information and Credit Rating Agency (ICRA), India’s GDP growth is expected to moderate to a four-quarter low of 6.7% in Q4 FY2024, down from 8.4% in Q3 FY2024.
      • The lower volume growth and diminishing gains from commodity prices are expected to dampen India’s growth in Q4 2024.
        Source: Financial Express
Knowledge Nuggets -
- Gross Domestic Product is the total value of all goods and services produced within a country's borders in a specific period, without accounting for the depreciation of capital assets. It reflects the economic activity and overall productivity of a nation.
- Net Domestic Product (NDP) adjusts Gross GDP by subtracting the depreciation. This depreciation represents the loss of value of physical assets due to wear and tear, aging, or obsolescence. Therefore, Net GDP provides a more accurate picture of the economy's sustainable output.
In summary:
- GDP: Total economic output without adjusting for depreciation.
- NDP: Total economic output minus depreciation of capital assets.

Science and Technology

  1. Microsoft introduces ‘Copilot+ PCs’ featuring advance AI
      • What: Microsoft has unveiled a new category of Windows PCs called Copilot+ PCs. These devices are designed to harness the power of AI and offer unparalleled performance.
      • Tell me more:
        • Developed by: Microsoft in collaboration with Acer and ASUSTek Computer.
        • These PCs have powerful new silicon capable of an incredible 40+ TOPS (trillion operations per second).
          Source: Live Mint
Knowledge Nuggets -
Here are some recent AI-related initiatives
India AI Mission:
- The Indian government has approved the ambitious IndiaAI mission with a budget of ₹10,371.92 crore. This mission aims to strengthen the AI innovation ecosystem in India.
- Global AI Developments in 2021: South Africa’s AI Patent: First country to grant a patent to an invention by AI.
  1. GalaxEye successfully tests Synthetic Aperture Radar technology
      • What: Bangaluru-based space technology start-up GalaxEye has successfully tested its Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) technology on a subscale High Altitude Pseudo-Satellite (HAPS) developed by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) – National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL).
      • Tell me more:
        • With this, GalaxEye becomes the world’s 1st private entity to conduct SAR trials on the HAPS platform.
        • HAPS are like high-flying drones that operate in the stratosphere, offering unprecedented capabilities for prolonged aerial surveillance.
          • These platforms leverage solar energy and advanced battery systems to stay aloft for extended periods.
        • At the stratosphere, SAR emerges as a pivotal technology for all-weather, all-time imaging, hence overcoming the challenge of cloud cover, which impedes traditional electro-optical cameras
          Source: The Hindu

Defence News

  1. USA launched an AI-powered fighter jet version of the F-16
      • What: USA has launched the AI-controlled version of the F-16 aircraft, named “Vista”.
        • The aircraft was not controlled by a human pilot, but it was controlled by the AI.
      • Why: This initiative has been launched to reduce the human casualties during the dogfight
        • “Dogfight” refers to a close-range aerial combat between military aircraft, typically fighters, in which pilots engage in aggressive, fast-paced maneuvers to gain a tactical advantage over their adversaries
        • Vista flew its first AI-controlled dogfight in September 2023.
          Source: Indian Express

Knowledge Nuggets -
AI Adoption in the Indian Military
- In 2019, a Defence AI Project Agency (DAIPA) and a Defence AI Council (DAIC) were established.
- In 2022, the government published a list of 75 priority projects related to using AI for defence.
- Defence Research and Development Organisation has dedicated laboratories for application-oriented research in AI such as Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR), Bengaluru

Important Days

  1. May 21: National Anti-Terrorism Day
      • What: National Anti-Terrorism Day is annually observed across India on 21 May to mark the death anniversary of former Prime Minister (PM) Rajiv Gandhi.
      • He was assassinated in 1991 at Sriperumbudur, a village near Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
      • In 1992, the Government of India (GoI) decided to observe 21 May as National Anti- Terrorism Day to honour the memory of Rajiv Gandhi.
        Source: Business Standard
Knowledge Nuggets -
About Rajiv Gandhi
- Rajiv Gandhi was sworn in on October 31, 1984 as the Prime Minister of India when he was 40 years old. He was the 6th and youngest PM of India till date.
- His tenure lasted from 1984-89. Gandhi had sent Indian peacekeeping forces to Sri Lanka in 1987 to restore peace in the country, but the move was widely criticised both within the country and outside of it.
- This also caused animosity toward the LTTE, which is believed to have led to his assassination in Sriperumbudur, about 30 miles from Madras in Tamil Nadu, during an election campaign.
  1. May 21: International Tea Day
      • What: The United Nations (UN)’s International Tea Day (ITD) is annually observed across the globe on 21st May to promote sustainable production and consumption of tea and highlight the role of tea cultivation in combating hunger and poverty.
      • 21st May 2024 marks the observance of the 5th ITD.
      • Organized by: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).
      • Note: The 2024 ITD highlights women and their role in the tea sector.
        Source: News18
Knowledge Nuggets -
About Tea Board of India
- The Tea Board of India is a state agency under the control of the Indian Government’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Here are some key facts about it:
Establishment and Purpose:
- The Tea Board of India was established on April 1, 1954, through the enactment of the Tea Act of 1953.
- Its primary purpose is to promote the cultivation, processing, domestic trade, and export of tea from India.
Headquarters and Location:
- The Tea Board’s headquarters is in Kolkata (formerly known as Calcutta), West Bengal.
- It also has global offices in London (United Kingdom), Moscow (Russia), and Dubai (United Arab Emirates).
  1. May 21: World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development
      • Why: To celebrate the richness of the world’s culture and underscore the importance of its diversity.
      • Organized by: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
        Source: Pioneer
Knowledge Nuggets -
UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization)
- It Created in 1946,
- Its permanent headquarters are in Paris, France.
- UNESCO aims to promote world peace and security through international cooperation in education, arts, sciences, and culture.

Memorandum of Understanding

  1. Tata Steel partners with National Grid to create a green steel project in the UK.
      • What: Tata Steel Limited has signed an agreement with National Grid Plc’s Electricity System Operator (ESO).
        • National Grid plc is a British multinational electricity and gas utility company headquartered in London, England.
        • National Grid Plc ESO manages electricity network in England and Wales.

      • Why: To develop the necessary power infrastructure for converting Tata Steel’s power plant at the Port Talbot site in Wales, UK, into a green steel project.
      • Tell me more:
        • The National Grid Plc ESO will construct a new electrical framework to power Tata Steel’s 3.2 million-ton electric arc furnace by the end of 2027, replacing the aging blast furnaces.
        • Tata Steel’s electric arc furnace aims to cut emissions by 30% by 2030 and reach net zero by 2045.
          Source: Economic Times
  2. RITES Signs Pact to Supply Coaches to Bangladesh
      • What: RITES Limited, a government-owned company and the exporting part of Indian Railways, was recently awarded a large contract to provide Bangladesh Railways with 200 broad-gauge passenger coaches.
      • Tell me more:
        • Funding: The European Investment Bank paid for the deal, which was worth USD 111.26 million (about Rs 915 crore).
        • The RITES, has won this contract through a global competitive bidding process
        • Contract Details: RITES and Bangladesh Railways have a deal that includes more than just selling carriages.
          • It also includes helping with design, providing spare parts, and training.
          • The contract sets out 36 months for delivery and commissioning, followed by a 24-month warranty term.
        • Footprint of Make in India: This contract underscores RITES’ commitment to exporting indigenously developed railway stock, aligning with the ‘Make in India, for the World’ vision.
          Source: Economic Times
Knowledge Nuggets -
- RITES Limited, a Government of India Enterprise, was established in 1974 under the aegis of Indian Railways.
- It specializes in transport consultancy and engineering sector projects.
- Key areas include urban and regional planning, infrastructure, the design of highways, airports, seaports, and mass transit systems.
- It is internationally recognized with projects in 55 countries, notably in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East.
- RITES is involved in leasing and exporting railway equipment.
- It provides consultancy services for the operation and maintenance of transportation facilities.
- RITES is listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and the National Stock Exchange of India (NSE).
  1. Airbus Helicopters and SIDBI sign an MoU for helicopter financing in India
      • What: Airbus Helicopters and the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) signed a MoU to facilitate helicopter financing in India.
      • Why: The MoU aims to provide financing solutions for the purchase of Airbus helicopters in India.
      • Tell me more:
        • Collaboration: Both entities will work together to identify potential civil helicopter operators in India who are interested in acquiring Airbus helicopters.
        • Exclusive Financing: After the identification, SIDBI will evaluate these prospects and exclusively finance them for Airbus. The technical and industry knowledge will be provided by Airbus.
          Source: AIRBUS
Knowledge Nuggets -
- Small Industries Development Bank of India was established under an Act of the Parliament in 1990.
- SIDBI is mandated to serve as the Principal Financial Institution for executing the triple agenda of promotion, financing and development of the MSME sector and coordination of the functions of the various institutions engaged in similar activities.
- Headquarters: Lucknow


  1. Luis Rodolfo Abinader has been re-elected as the President of the Dominican Republic
      • What: Luis Rodolfo Abinader Corona has been re-elected as the President of the Dominican Republic for 2nd four-year term from 2024 to 2028.
      • He has been serving as the President of the Dominican Republic since 2020.
        Source: CNBC TV18
Knowledge Nuggets -
Dominican Republic
- President- Luis Rodolfo Abinader Corona
- Capital- Santo Domingo
- Currency- Dominican Peso


  1. Sri Lankan golden-backed frog rediscovered in India at Koundinya Wildlife Sanctuary
      • What: A Sri Lankan golden-backed frog has been rediscovered after 200 years in India at Koundinya Wildlife Sanctuary.
      • Discovered by: Researchers from the Zoological Survey of India, in partnership with the Andhra Pradesh Biodiversity Board.
  2. Sri Lankan golden-backed frog (Hylarana gracilis)
      • Scientific name: Sri Lankan golden-backed frog (Hylarana gracilis)
      • Discovered at: Koundinya wildlife sanctuary.
        • With this finding, the number of freshwater frog species in India rises to 20.
          Source: The Hindu
Knowledge Nuggets -
About Koundinya Wildlife Sanctuary
- It lies in Kuppam and Palmaner Ranges of Chittoor district, Andhra Pradesh.
- It is the only sanctuary in Andhra Pradesh known for harboring Asian elephants.
- Kaundinya and Kaigal tributaries of Palar River flow through it.
CEO of Anujjindal.in

About Anuj Jindal

Anuj Jindal, the founder, is an ex-manager from SBI, with an M.Com from Delhi School of Economics. He also has a JRF in Commerce & Management and NET in HRM, along with more than 5 years of experience in the field of Education.