1. Conservative Mauricio Macri wins presidential polls in ArgentinaConservative opposition candidate Mauricio Macri of Republican Proposal Party has won Argentina’s 2015 Presidential election. Mr Macri had secured more than 53 per cent votes defeating his rival Daniel Scioli of ruling Peronist Party who secured 47 per cent votes and ended the 12 years of leftist rule. He will succeed Christina Kirchner who had ruled the South American country since 2007 and reached the end of her two-term limit.
2. Michael Keating appointed as Special Representative for Somalia and Head of UNSOM
The Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on 23 November 2015 announced the appointment of Michael Keating of United Kingdom as Special Representative for Somalia and Head of the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM).
Keating will succeed Nicholas Kay, who will complete his assignment in December 2015. Kay was associated with UNSOM for over the past two and a half years.
3. India-Singapore signed 10 agreements on mutual co-operation
India and Singapore signed 10 agreements on mutual co-operation. These include Defence, Civil Aviation, National Planning and cyber Security.
The agreements were signed in presence of Prime Minster of Narendra Modi and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Narendra Modi was on a two-day visit to Singapore (23 November to 24 November 2015).
List of Joint Declaration/Agreements/MoU’s signed
Joint Declaration on a Strategic Partnership: Seeks to elevate bilateral relations to a strategic partnership to deepen and broaden engagement in existing areas of cooperation. The Strategic Partnership is also a framework to contribute to greater regional stability and growth.
Agreement concerning Defence Cooperation: It provides for
a) Defence Ministers’ Dialogue
b) Joint exercises between armed forces
c) Cooperation between defence industries to identify areas of co-production and co-development
Agreement on the Extension of Loan of Artifacts to the Asian Civilisations Museum of Singapore Executive Programme on Cooperation in the Fields of the Arts, Heritage, Archives and Library for the Years 2015-2018: Programme envisages detailed plan of action and cooperation in the field of Arts, Museums, Archives, Monuments, Library and Exchange of Technical Experts & Students for the period 2015-2018.
Operationalisation of the Technical Agreement on Sharing White Shipping Information: Was signed between the Indian Navy and the Singapore Navy signed on 21 July 2015.
MoU on Cooperation in the area of Cyber Security: The agreement was inked between Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In), Department of Information Technology of India and Singapore Computer Emergency Response Team (SingCERT), Cyber Security Agency of Singapore.
The MoU promotes closer cooperation and exchange of information pertaining to cyber security between the CERTs of the two nations by establishment of a broader framework for future dialogue; exchange of information on cyber-attacks; research collaboration in smart technologies; exchange of information on prevalent cyber security policies and best practices as well as professional exchanges.
MoU in Civil Aviation: It was inked between Airports Authority of India (AAI) and Singapore Cooperation Enterprise (SCE). The MoU facilitates mutual cooperation in a number of mutually agreed areas of civil aviation services and airport management beginning with Jaipur and Ahmedabad airports.
MoU on Cooperation in the Field of Planning: It was inked between National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog) and Singapore Cooperation Enterprise (SCE). The MoU promotes knowledge and information exchange in areas such as
a) Urban planning
b) Waste water management
c) Solid waste management
d) Public-private partnerships between the two organisations
MoU on Cooperation to Combat Illicit Trafficking in Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substance and their Precursors: It was inked between the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) of India and the Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) Singapore.
The MoU facilitates and enhances cooperation by exchange of Information on trends in the illicit manufacture and those arrested on drug trafficking charges and establish direct contact points between the two Bureaus. Capacity building, skill upgrading and knowledge development are also identified as areas of cooperation.
MoU in Capacity Building in the Field of Urban Planning and Governance: It was inked between the Town and Country Planning Organisation of the Government of India and the Singapore Cooperation Enterprise.
The MoU provides for participation of government officials from India in capacity-building programmes in areas such as urban planning and management.
Besides, the Prime Ministers Narendra Modi and Lee Hsein Loong also released commemorative stamps depicting Rashtrapati Bhawan and Istana-Official residence of Singapore President-as a mark of 50 years of bilateral relation.
4. Pfizer to take over Allergan in blockbuster merger deal of $160 billion
US drugs giant Pfizer Inc. has struck upon a deal to buy Ireland based Allergan for 160 billion dollars making it the biggest pharmaceuticals merger deal in history of healthcare sector. The blockbuster merger would create the world’s biggest drugmaker to be called Pfizer Plc with its headquarters in Dublin, Ireland. Under this deal, Allergan shareholders will receive 11.3 shares in the merged company for each of their Allergan shares. Currently Pfizer Inc is selling flagship pharmaceutical products like Viagra and cholesterol drug Lipitor, while Allergan is best known for selling anti-wrinkle treatment drug Botox, Alzheimer’s drug Namenda and dry-eye medication Restasis.
5. Noted labour economist T.S. Papola passes away
Noted labour economist Dr. T.S. Papola passed away in New Delhi. He was 74. He had served as an advisor with the erstwhile Planning Commission of Union Government for eight years from 1987 to 1995.
6. Ratan Tata invests in Singapore’s startup Crayon Data
Tata Sons Chairman Emeritus Ratan Tata has invested an undisclosed amount in Singapore-based big data company Crayon Data.
The investment was made in his personal capacity.
Crayon, a portfolio company of Jungle Ventures, had previously raised 10 million Singapore dollars in seed and Series A funding from angel institutional investors like Jungle Ventures and Spring Seeds.
The veteran industrialist has been aggressively investing in start-ups, ranging from e-commerce firms to cab aggregators.
He has invested in firms like Snapdeal, Kaaryah, Urban Ladder, Bluestone, CarDekho, Sabse Technologies, Xiaomi and Ola.
Tata, who served as chairman of Tata Sons for over two decades until his retirement in 2012, has also joined some venture capital funds as advisor, including Kalaari Capital and Jungle Ventures in the past year.