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Minimally invasive surgery without extensive hospitalisation, which can easily be done by skilled surgeons outside major hospital chains in smaller/mid-sized units is poised to be a nearly $80 billion market in India.

Healthcare startups in India have brought about an uberisation of the secondary care surgery market in the country with a focus on specialist care, personal attention and affordability.

Surgeries are the biggest part of healthcare expenditure with secondary care surgery a growing market.

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The festive quarter may see a larger impact of chip shortage that is affecting the entire industry.

Apple, which took a massive $6-billion hit in its September quarter owing to supply constraints, has said that the festive quarter may see a larger impact from the chip shortage that is affecting the entire industry. In an earnings call late on Thursday, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that the primary cause of supply-chain-related shortages will be the chip shortage in the ongoing quarter.

"By the time we finish this quarter, the constraints will be larger than the $6 billion that we experienced in Q4 (July-September period)," he told the analysts. Apple faced about a $6-billion hit from the supply constraints, and it affected the iPhone, the iPad, and the Mac devices in its Q4 earnings.

"There were two causes for this in Q4. One was the chip shortages that you've heard a lot about from many different companies throughout the industry. The second was COVID-related manufacturing disruptions in Southeast Asia, "Cook informed. The Covid disruptions have improved materially across October to where we currently are, Cook said.

"So for this quarter, we think that the primary cause of supply-chain-related shortages will be the chip shortage. It will affect, or it is affecting, I should say, pretty much most of our products currently. But from a demand point of view, demand is very robust, " the Apple CEO mentioned. The chip shortage is happening on legacy nodes. "Primarily, we buy leading edge nodes, and we're not having issues on leading edge nodes. But on legacy nodes, we compete with many different companies for supply and it's difficult to forecast when those things will be normal," Cook elaborated. (IANS/ MBI)


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International Monetary Fund said that India will continue to be the fastest growing economy

India will continue to be the world's fastest growing major economy, clocking a growth rate of 9.5 per cent this fiscal year and 8.5 per cent in the next, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) projections released on Tuesday.

The IMF's World Economic Outlook (WEO) kept the gross domestic product (GDP) growth forecasts it had made in July for India, whose Covid-battered economy had shrunk by 7.3 per cent in the last fiscal year. In July, while India was in the grip of Covid-19's second wave, the IMF had cut its forecast of 12.5 per cent made in April before the pandemic's resurgence by 3 per cent.

The WEO's long-term forecast for India's GDP growth is 6.1 per cent in 2026. In the WEO tables, China followed India with 8 per cent this year and 5.6 per cent the next - a reduction of 0.1 per cent for both years from the forecast made in July.

The UK came next with 6.8 per cent growth this year, followed by France at 6.5 per cent, and the US at 6 per cent.

The global economy is projected to grow 5.9 per cent in 2021 and 4.9 per cent in 2022 - a 0.1 percentage point lower for 2021 than in the July forecast.

The WEO said: "The downward revision for 2021 reflects a downgrade for advanced economies -- in part due to supply disruptions -- and for low-income developing countries, largely due to worsening pandemic dynamics."

IMF's Chief Economic Gita Gopinath said in her foreword to the WEO, "The global recovery continues but the momentum has weakened, hobbled by the pandemic. Fuelled by the highly transmissible Delta variant, the recorded global Covid-19 death toll has risen close to 5 million and health risks abound, holding back a full return to normalcy. Pandemic outbreaks in critical links of global supply chains have resulted in longer-than-expected supply disruptions, further feeding inflation in many countries. Overall, risks to economic prospects have increased, and policy trade-offs have become more complex," she warned.

They projected a wary outlook: "Overall, the balance of risks for (global) growth is tilted to the downside. The major source of concern is that more aggressive SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) variants could emerge before widespread vaccination is reached."

The WEO, which stressed the importance of vaccination, said:, "The development of Covid-19 vaccines was encouraged by unprecedented public support." As an example, it cited the help in scaling up manufacturing by the Indian government grants to vaccine producers.

The IMF forecast is more than a per cent higher than the World Bank's estimate of 8.3 per cent for this fiscal year, which puts it behind China's 8.5 per cent growth this year.

The Bank's Regional Economic Update released last week said India's GDP growth is expected to moderate to 7.5 per cent next year and 6.5 per cent in 2023-24.

The United Nations, which made its forecast for the calendar year, rather than the fiscal, said it expected India's economy to grow by 7.5 per cent this calendar year and rebound to 10.5 per cent next year. India's consumer price index is expected to grow by 5.6 per cent this fiscal year and by 4.9 the next, according to the IMF's WEO.

The Maldives, whose economy shrunk by 32 per cent last year, is expected to rebound to 18.9 per cent this year and moderate to13.2 per cent next year, the WEO said.

Elsewhere in South Asia, growth is expected to be slower. Pakistan's GDP is forecast to grow by 3.9 per cent this year, and by 4 per cent the next, and Bangladesh by 4.6 per cent this year and 6.5 per cent the next year, according to the WEO.

Sri Lanka's growth is forecast to grow 3.6 this year and moderate to 3.3 next year, while Nepal's GDP is expected to grow by 1.8 per cent this year and then rebound to 4.4 per cent, the report said.

Bhutan's economy is forecast to continue to shrink by 1.9 per cent this year, but grow by 4.2 per cent next year, according to the WEO. (IANS/JB)

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The analysis revealed that the number of person-days in which city dwellers were exposed went from 40 billion per year in 1983 to 119 billion in 2016

A new study of more than 13,000 cities worldwide has found that the number of person-days in which inhabitants are exposed to extreme combinations of heat and humidity has tripled since the 1980s. The authors said, the trend, which now affects nearly a quarter of the world's population, is the combined result of both rising temperatures and booming urban population growth.

The study was published late on Monday night India time in the 'Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences'. To come up with a measure of person-days spent in such conditions of heat and humidity, the researchers matched up the weather data with statistics on the cities' populations over the same time period. The analysis revealed that the number of person-days in which city dwellers were exposed went from 40 billion per year in 1983 to 119 billion in 2016 -- a threefold increase. By 2016, 1.7 billion people were being subjected to such conditions on multiple days.

Over recent decades, hundreds of millions have moved from rural areas to cities, which now hold more than half the world's population. There, temperatures are generally higher than in the countryside, because of sparse vegetation and abundant concrete, asphalt and other impermeable surfaces that tend to trap and concentrate heat-the so-called urban heat island effect. "This has broad effects," said the study's lead author, Cascade Tuholske, a postdoctoral researcher at Columbia University's Earth Institute. "It increases morbidity and mortality. It impacts people's ability to work, and results in lower economic output. It exacerbates pre-existing health conditions."

assorted garbage bottles on sandy surface Over recent decades, hundreds of millions have moved from rural areas to cities, which now hold more than half the world's population. | Photo by John Cameron on Unsplash

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