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Union Cabinet chaired by PM Modi approves signing of Air Services Agreement between India and Fiji

The Agreement is for updating of the existing Air Services Agreement (ASA) between the two countries which was signed on 28th January 1974

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PM Narendra Modi with PM of Fiji Frank Bainimarama. newsroompost.com

NEW DELHI, August 24, 2016: The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for signing of new Air Services Agreement (ASA) between India and Fiji.

The Agreement is for updating of the existing Air Services Agreement (ASA) between the two countries which was signed on 28th January 1974. The update is as per latest ICAO template keeping in view the latest developments in the civil aviation sector and with an objective to improve the air connectivity between the two countries.

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A draft text of Air Service Agreement has been finalized in consultation with Ministry of Law & Justice (Department of Legal Affairs), Ministry of Finance (Department of Economic Affairs, Department of Revenue), Ministry of External Affairs, Department of Commerce and Ministry of Tourism.

The essential features of the Air Services Agreement are as follows:

i. Both countries shall be entitled to designate one or more airline.

ii. The designated airlines of either country shall have the right to establish offices in the territory of the other country for the promotion and sale of air services.

iii. The designated airlines of the two countries shall have fair and equal opportunity to operate the agreed services on specified routes. The routes and frequencies shall be decided subsequently.

iv. The designated airline will be free to decide tariffs in respect of the agreed services at reasonable levels based on the commercial considerations.

v. The designated Airline of each party can enter into cooperative marketing arrangements with the designated carriers of the same party and another party.

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vi. Apart from the above, the ASA also has the provisions relating to Revocation or Suspension of Operating Authorization, Principles governing operations of agreed services, commercial opportunities, safety related clause etc. that were incorporated in the line of Indian model ASA.

vii. The existing Route Schedule annex to the ASA has also been revised and new points of call have been added for enhanced connectivity. Now Indian carriers can operate to any points in Fiji from points in India whereas the carriers of Fiji can establish a direct operation to Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai in India and by code share with Indian carriers to Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad apart from points given for direct operation. Besides this, Kochi, Varanasi, Ahmedabad and Amritsar may be served through domestic code-share operations.

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“India Has Opportunity To Become One of The Top Three Economies in The World”, Says Reliance Chairman Mukesh Ambani

The RIL chairman said that empowering small and medium businesses would be key to driving India's growth faster

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Mukesh Ambani
The RIL chairman said that empowering small and medium businesses would be key to driving India's growth faster. Wikimedia Commons

Riding on the power of technology, India has the opportunity to become a premier digital society and one of the top three economies in the world, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani said here on Monday.

Ambani said that India has the opportunity to become the most technically-enabled society where all the development could be powered by the tools of technology. “We can argue about whether it will happen in five years or 10 years but it is going to happen, and we will be in the top three countries in the world,” he said in a fireside chat with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

The RIL chairman said that empowering small and medium businesses would be key to driving India’s growth faster. “Every small business and entrepreneur in India has the potential to become a Dhirubhai Ambani or Bill Gates. And that is the power that differentiates India from the rest of the world,” he said during Microsoft’s “Future Decoded Summit” here.

“I think that the entrepreneurial power that we have at the grassroots is enormous. We have to realise that small, medium and micro enterprises provide 70 per cent of India’s employment. They drive 40 per cent of India’s exports,” Ambani added. India has transformed tremendously over the past two decades — from a $300 billion economy in early 1990s to becoming a $3 trillion economy in 2020.

“And I think, I can easily say that the mobile networks in India now are better or at par with anybody else in the world,” he said. About 38 crore people have migrated to the 4G technology platform offered by Jio in about three years, Ambani informed, adding that since the establishment of Jio, average data rate has come down drastically in India — from Rs 300-Rs 500 per GB to Rs 12-Rs14 per GB.

Congratulating Nadella for his leadership of the organisation, Ambani said that the collaboration between Microsoft and Jio would be a defining partnership of the decade. RIL in August last year announced partnership of its subsidiary Reliance Jio Infocomm with Microsoft in the technology space, including creation on cloud solutions.

As per the partnership, Jio will leverage the Microsoft Azure cloud platform to develop innovative cloud solutions focused on the needs of Indian businesses. Jio will set up data centres in locations across India, consisting of next-generation compute, storage and networking capabilities, and Microsoft will deploy its Azure platform in these data centres to support Jio’s offerings.

Mukesh Ambani
Riding on the power of technology, India has the opportunity to become a premier digital society and one of the top three economies in the world, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani said here on Monday. Wikimedia Commons

Nadella said that the mission of Microsoft is to help organisation to become independent — not dependent — to build their own Artificial Intelligence and other tech capabilities, and tech intensity. “In the next decade, our main investment will be on making software engineeres that organisations hire more productive,” Nadella said, adding that Microsoft will build complete toolchain for developers.

The Microsoft CEO said that the increasing rate of digitization of people, places, and things, will be the defining secular trend over the next 10 years. Saying that Microsoft’s differentiated approach across the cloud and edge is winning customers, Nadella said that Microsoft now has 57 data centre regions in the world.

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In India, Microsoft has three data centre regions — Mumbai, Pune and Chennai — besides a Cybersecurity Engagement Centre in New Delhi. (IANS)