Current Affairs March 21 AND 22, 2019
1. Paris, Hong Kong join Singapore as the world's most-expensive cities
- According to the annual Worldwide Cost of Living survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit, the title of most expensive city is shared by Paris, Hong Kong, and Singapore-the first time in the survey's 30-year history that three cities are in the top spot.
- The report looks at 133 cities and the cost of 160 items, such as food and drink, utility bills, rent, and transportation. Using New York as a benchmark, it determines whether prices for these items have gone up or down.
- The survey will help the companies to calculate cost of living allowances and build compensation packages for business travelers and expatriates.
2. International Day of Happiness 2019 celebrated on March 20
- International Day of Happiness 2019 was celebrated on March 20
- United Nations has celebrated the International Day of Happiness as a way to recognize the importance of happiness in the lives of people around the world.
- Happier Together is the theme for International Day of Happiness 2019.
3. SBI inks pact with Bank of China for business opportunities
- The country's largest lender SBIhas signed a pact with the Bank of China to boost business opportunities.
- This MoU will facilitate the clients of both the banks to access banking products and services of each other, which will lead to a mutually beneficial relationship.
- Both banks' clients will be able to use the vast combined network to expand their businesses abroad.
4. World Water Day observed on 22 March
- World Water Day celebrated annually on March 22.
- An international day to celebrate freshwater was recommended at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro.
- The theme for World Water Day 2019 is 'Leaving no one behind'.
5. 33rd Edition of India-Indonesia Coordinated Patrol (Ind-Indo Corpat) Commences at Port Blair
- Indonesian Naval Ship KRI Sultan Thaha Syaifuddin and Maritime Patrol Aircraft CN-235 led by Cmde Dafit Santoso arrived at Port Blair.
- The ship and aircraft from both the countries would undertake patrolling on the respective sides of 236 nautical miles long International Maritime Boundary line.
- It is also a part of the Indian Government's vision of SAGAR (Security and Growth for All in the Region), for assisting countries in the Indian Ocean Region.
6. ADB to Invest $50 Million in Avaada Energy for Expansion of Solar Projects in India
- The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has announced that it will invest $50 million in Indian renewable energy independent power producer Avaada Energy Private Limited.
- Avaada aims to use the capital to expand its solar energy generation capacity in India.
- Avaada is a developer of utility-scale, rooftop, and off-grid solar projects. The company has secured power purchase agreements of about 1,700 megawatts.
7. Mumbai social worker Gauri Sawant becomes first transgender election ambassador
- The Election Commission of India has appointed transgender social activist Gauri Sawant, as one of the 12 election ambassadors from Maharashtra.
- According to the Election Commission, Gauri Sawant's appointment would help in more people from this category getting registered during the final phase of voters enrollment.
- Election Commission has nominated the renowned sportsmen, film-makers, literary personalities of the respective constituencies as the goodwill ambassadors to induce more voters to vote in the Lok Sabha elections.
8. Finland is the happiest nation, India slips 7 spots, ranks 140th
- Indian figures at 140th place, seven spots down from last year, on UN World Happiness Report- 2019.
- The list is topped by Finland for the second year in a row.
- The report was released by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network for the United Nations on March 20, which was designated as the World Happiness Day by the UN General Assembly in 2012.
9. India's deepest shaft cave discovered in Meghalaya
- Barely a year after the discovery of the world's longest sandstone cave Krem Puri in Mawsynram region of Meghalaya's East Khasi Hills district, now a cave with the deepest shaft in the country has been discovered.
- The discovery was made during the 28th edition of the annual 'Caving in the Abode of the Clouds Expedition'.
- The milestone of this year's expedition was the 503 km of cave passage explored and mapped in Meghalaya.
10. International Workshop on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure-2019 concludes successfully
- The two-day International Workshop on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (IWDRI) successfully concluded.
- In his special address, the Chairman of the 15th Finance Commission of India, Shri N. K. Singh called for collective action on resilient infrastructure so that people-centric solutions are found.
- The need and practical issues concerning finance and insurance for infrastructure were also discussed during the workshop.