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General Awareness - Top Stories

12 Jan 2018

AROUND THE WORLD

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Chinese Company to Operate Apple's iCloud

The iCloud services of Apple in China will be operated by a local partner in Guizhou province from February 28, where the data of all Apple customers in China will be stored. The move aims to increase transparency and offer Chinese customers a safer and more fluent experience. Apple announced the new database in Guizhou last July, with an investment of $1 billion. Other major technology companies, including Amazon and Microsoft, have also made similar deals to run data centres in China. Guizhou is one of the least developed regions in China. Yet it has become a pioneer in China’s "big data" development due to its pleasant climate, power supply and network infrastructure. The provincial government has set up a leading group for big data, with the provincial governor as leader. Leaders at various levels are the "cloud chiefs" responsible for big data development in their own areas.

No-Deal Brexit Could Cost 482,000 Jobs to Britain

Leaving the European Union without a deal in 2019, could cost Britain almost half-a-million jobs, London’s key finance industry vacancies also plummeted the most in three years. The report was released hours after recruitment firm Morgan McKinley published a survey showing job vacancies in London’s finance industry fell 52% in December, the most in three years. There was also a 37% decline in job openings year-on-year, underscoring the looming "Brexodus" from the City. In the worst-case scenario in the Cambridge study, Prime Minister Theresa May would fail to secure a two-year transition to ease the passage for businesses, a situation that in London alone may create 87,000 fewer jobs and usher in 10 years of lower growth. Negotiations with the EU will resume in March, with the status of banks the new battleground of trade discussions. 

INDIA - BUSINESS/ECONOMY

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Modi Among Top 3 World Leaders

Ahead of his Davos visit, a Gallup International survey has ranked PM Narendra Modi among the top three leaders of the world ahead of US President Donald Trump, China’s Xi Jinping, Russia’s Vladimir Putin, UK PM Theresa May and Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu.

TATAs Repay Rs17,000 crore of Tata Tele Debt

TATA Group, paid around Rs17,000 crore to banks to settle a lion’s share of the outstanding debt of Tata Tele services. After the payment, around Rs6,000 crore of debt remains with the company. A third person said the group has promised a second tranche of payment towards the end of the month. The payment is a clear indicator that TATAs are serious about consolidating the remaining telecom and media businesses.

In a Relief to CPRL, Delhi HC Allows Company to Use McDonald's Brand Name

In a fresh development in the dispute between McDonald’s India and estranged partner Vikram Bakshi, the Delhi High Court declined to pass an interim order restraining their joint venture from selling products using the US restaurant chain’s brand. The court also allowed a representative of the McDonald’s legal team to visit the stores operated by the Bakshi-led Connaught Plaza Restaurants (CPRL) to conduct quality checks. CPRL was using products and packaging that did not measure up to its standards because they were obtained from different suppliers. If CPRL did not follow the global standards maintained by McDonald’s, then it could not use the brand.

INDIA - OTHERS

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India's Anti-Graft Steps, GST & More on Davos Table

Global investors will get an opportunity to ask top leaders of the Indian government about the country’s efforts to weed out corruption, make doing business easier, new tax system and much more at a special session on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum at Davos later this month. While PM Modi will try to hard sell India as an investment destination at the five-day conference at the Swiss town, his ministers and, more importantly, non-governmental organisations will pitch in to convince global businesses about why the country should be on their mind when they think of investment. The India Foundation, a think tank based in India, in collaboration with industry body Assocham and Switzerland based not for profit Indo-Swiss Centre, will hold an India-World Business Leadership Summit on the sidelines of WEF on January 23.

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