The Centre has decided to extend the suspension on flights to and from the UK till January 7 in the wake of the spread of the new fast-moving strain of the coronavirus mutant. Till Wednesday the Union Health Ministry logged 20 cases in India of the variant.
Initial decision on suspension was till December 31. However, in the wake of samples increasing for the variant strain, a new decision was taken.
“Decision has been taken to extend the temporary suspension of flights to & from the UK till 7 January 2021,” Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said in a tweet on Wednesday.
“Thereafter strictly regulated resumption will take place for which details will be announced shortly,” he added.
The move comes a day after Puri said that a slight extension of the temporary suspension of UK flights beyond December 31 can be expected.
Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, the minister said that over 60 flights per week were being operated between UK and India prior to the suspension.
“I foresee a slight extension of the temporary suspension because we are getting a fuller picture of what has happened. I don’t expect the extension to be a long or indefinite extension,” Puri had said.
The suspension commenced with effect from 11.59 p.m. on December 22.
Prior to the suspension, Vistara, Air India, Virgin Atlantic and British Airways were operating flights between the two countries.
Fuel prices resurge after 3-day break
Country’s petrol and diesel prices continued its northward march on Saturday, after a three-day break, taking its retail rates to unprecedented levels and burning holes in the consumers pockets.
Oil marketing companies raised the pump price of petrol and diesel by 24 paise and 15 paise per litre on Saturday.
With this, petrol is now priced at Rs 91.17 a litre and diesel Rs 81.47 a litre in the capital.
Across the country as well the petrol and diesel prices increased between 20-30 paise per litre depending on the level of local duty at the state level.
Sources in OMCs said that price rise on Saturday followed movement in product price in global markets. The crude oil is also on boil with benchmark Brent crude still above $66 a barrel now. It was less than $60 a barrel just a few days back.
Petrol and diesel prices have been rising continuously since February 9. In the 14 increases since then, the prices have gone up by Rs 4.22 per litre for petrol and Rs 4.34 a litre for diesel in Delhi.
The increase in the previous weeks has taken petrol to cross historic high levels of Rs 100 a litre in several cities across the country.
In Mumbai, petrol prices is just Rs 2.4 per litre short at Rs 97.57 a litre (from the three digit mark of Rs 100 per litre for the very first time ever). Diesel prices in the city is closing in on Rs 90 a litre (Rs 88.60 a litre).
In all other metros, petrol is over Rs 90 a litre mark while diesel is well over Rs 80 a litre.
Premium petrol crossed Rs 100 per litre mark in several cities of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra a few days back.
Since fuel prices are benchmarked to a 15-day rolling average of global refined products’ prices and dollar exchange rate, pump prices can be expected to remain northbound over the next few days even if crude price stabilises.
The petrol and diesel prices have increased 26 times in 2021 with the two auto fuels increasing by Rs 7.46 and Rs 7.60 per litre, respectively so far this year.
Oil companies executives said that petrol and diesel prices may increase further in coming days as retail prices may have to be balanced in line with global developments to prevent OMCs from making loss on sale of auto fuels.
Maruti Suzuki exports 20L vehicles since 1986-87
Automobile Maruti Suzuki India on Saturday said it has accomplished two million (20 lakh) vehicle exports.
Accordingly, Maruti Suzuki commenced export of vehicles in FY1986-87.
The company’s first large consignment of 500 cars was shipped to Hungary in September 1987.
In FY2012-13, the Company achieved the milestone of one-million exports.
“In the first million, more than 50 per cent of exports were undertaken to developed markets in Europe,” the company said in a statement.
According to the statement, Maruti Suzuki achieved the subsequent million in over eight years with special focus on emerging markets in Latin America, Africa and Asia regions.
“With concerted efforts, the Company has been able to gain sizeable share in markets like Chile, Indonesia, South Africa and Sri Lanka. Models such as Alto, Baleno, Dzire and Swift have emerged as popular choices in these markets.”
Currently, we export 14 models, nearly 150 variants, to over 100 countries.
In January this year, the Company started production and export of Suzuki’s celebrated compact off-roader Jimny from India.
“With India as a production base for Jimny, Suzuki aims to leverage Maruti
Suzuki’s global production stature.”
Nirmala Sitharaman attends G20 Central Bank Governors’ Meet
Union Finance and Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has participated virtually in the First G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors (FMCBG) meeting under the Italian Presidency to discuss policy actions for transformative and equitable recovery.
The other issues on the agenda on Friday included global economic outlook, financial sector issues, financial inclusion and sustainable finance.
Sitharaman spoke about India’s policy response to the pandemic. She said that India’s domestic policies have been based broadly on supporting citizens through measures such as credit guarantees, direct transfers, food guarantees, economic stimulus packages and accelerating structural reform.
She also spoke about India’s vaccination programme, which is the world’s largest and the most ambitious vaccination drive. She mentioned that India has extended vaccine support to several countries.
During this meeting, G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors also discussed the implications of climate change on global growth and financial stability.
Speaking on the Presidency’s proposal to undertake systematic policy dialogue on climate risk and environment taxation, Sitharaman suggested that these conversations should remain within the ambit of Paris Agreement and should be based on the principles of common but differentiated responsibility, respective capability, and the voluntary nature of the commitments.
The Finance Minister also stressed upon the importance of transfer of green technologies and scaling up of climate finance.
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