Cabinet approves IBSA maritime pact
The agreement between India, South Africa and Brazil is meant to improve relations and promote direct links.india Updated: Sep 08, 2006 20:32 IST
The Cabinet on Thursday approved the signing of the India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) trilateral agreement on merchant shipping and other maritime related matters.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the leaders of the other two countries will sign the pact during the first IBSA summit at Brazilian capital Brasilia on September 13.
"Promoting direct links between the three countries is important from India's point of view. The proposed agreement is an important component of this," government spokesperson Deepak Sandhu told reporters after a cabinet meeting presided over by the Prime Minister.
"It will further strengthen the relations and cooperation between the three countries," she added.
The Cabinet also approved enhanced funding of Rs 5.18 billion ($11 million) for the Bangalore International Airport at Devenhalli to cater to its redesign.
"Due to the redesign, certain clauses of the Concession Agreement needed to be amended to reflect the enhanced scope of work and specifications," the spokesperson pointed out.
The Cabinet also approved the release of an additional instalment of dearness allowance to government employees and dearness relief to pensioners at the rate of five per cent over the existing 24 per cent that has become due from July 1.
This will entail additional expenditure of Rs 18.88 billion (in a full financial year) and Rs 12.59 billion in the eight months of fiscal 2006-07 till March 31, 2007.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), which also met under Manmohan Singh's chairmanship, approved non-plan budgetary support of Rs 1.24 billion towards outstanding statutory dues and salary for the period January 1-June 30 of 15 public sector enterprises.
"This will mitigate the hardships of the employees and motivate them toward better output and prepare them to achieve the goal of reviving the companies," the spokesperson added.
The enterprises include Andrew Yule & Co, Kolkata; HMT, Bangalore; Hindustan Photo Films, Ooty; Bharat Heavy Plates and Vessels, Visakhapatnam; and Triveni Structurals, Allahabad.