गुजरात मुख्यमंत्री विजय रुपानी 29 अक्टूबर को सूरत में आयोजित दुनिया का सबसे बड़ा चिकित्सा शिविर “स्वास्थ्य जिंदगी” का करेंगे उद्घाटन

विश्व का सबसे बड़ा  चिकित्सा स्वास्थ्य शिविर 29 अक्टूबर २०१७  को सूरत में  आयोजित  किया गया है और संगठित आरके एचआईवी एड्स केंद्र द्वारा और कई व्यवसायों और सूरत के  व्यापारि आगे आए हैं।

शिविर का समर्थन करने के लिए  न सिर्फ वित्तीय, बल्कि रसद, मानव संसाधन और सांख्यिकीय तरीके से करेंगे उत्तर प्रदेश के मुख्यमंत्री योगी आदित्यनाथ, मंत्री  गिरिराज सिंह, अश्विनी कुमार चौबे, फग्गन सिंह कुलस्ते, रामदास अठावले  समारोह में भाग लेंगे। संरक्षक सूरत मेडिकल शिविर में  अजय  अग्रवाल शुभलक्मी  पॉलियेस्टर लिमिटेड, रक व्यास, ऑरेंज अस्पताल के अध्यक्ष है  एन. सी. पी के अध्यक्ष  शिव नारायण पालीवाल,  डॉ ऋषिकेश पई और डॉ रेशमा ढिल्लों पै और कई अन्य लोग शामिल होंगे।

सूरत मेडिकल कॉलेज, स्मिमर अस्पताल सूरत और अन्य सूरत में विश्व के सबसे बड़े मेडिकल कैंप के लिए डॉक्टरों और अन्य चिकित्सा कर्मचारी उपलब्ध कराएंगे। सुरत  में दुनिया की सबसे बड़ी  चिकित्सा और स्वास्थ्य शिविर में  फिल्म और टीवी  के सितारे  भी  उपस्थिति होंगे।आयोजकों के मुताबिक आर के एचआईवी एड्स केंद्र, 10,000 से अधिक चिकित्सा पेशेवरों सहित 6000 डॉक्टर और 300 फार्मा कंपनियों होंगी।  इस आयोजन में करीब 8 से 10 लाख व्यक्तियों के आने की संभावना है, जो इस शिविर से लाभान्वित होंगे .

यह एक  ऐतिहासिक दिन होगा-  चिकित्सा जांच शिविर  स्थानीय संगठनों की मदद से मुंबई स्थित में  गैर सरकारी संगठन आर के एचआईवी एड्स रिसर्च एंड केयर सेंटर की ओर से आयोजित की जा रही है और लगभग 5 लाख लोग नि: शुल्क जांच और उपचार करा सकेंगे।  इस   कैम्प में आवश्यकता के आधार पर स्वास्थ्य दुर्घटना बीमा, भी दिया जायेगा  इंडियाएससीबीस डॉट कॉम के जरिये।

आयोजकों ने कहा कि वे जरूरतमंद मरीजों के लिए  परिचालन और सर्जरी के लिए 20,000 रुपये से 20 लाख रुपये तक का खर्च उठा सकते हैं। सामान्य और विशेष शाखाओं सहित विभिन्न संकायों के लगभग 5,000 डॉक्टर इस शिविर में 10,000 से अधिक पैरामीडिकल स्टाफ के साथ मरीजों की जांच और उपचार करने के लिए अपनी सेवाएं देंगे।

पिछले पांच वर्षों में, आर के एचआईवी सफलतापूर्वक 7971 चिकित्सा शिविरों, जिसमें 37,71,578 से अधिक रोगियों गुजरात, महाराष्ट्र, गोवा, मध्य प्रदेश, छत्तीसगढ़, झारखंड, बिहार, राजस्थान, उड़ीसा जैसे राज्यों में जांच कर रहे थे संचालित किया है। शहरी स्लम और आस-पास के ग्रामीण क्षेत्रों में एक पार-अनुभागीय सर्वेक्षण को विभिन्न सामाजिक स्वास्थ्य-जनसांख्यिकीय पैटर्नों और एहतियाती उपायों को प्रभावित करने वाले विभिन्न स्वास्थ्य खतरों को समझने के लिए आयोजित किया गया था।

New 372 Room Hotel To Open At Ibn Battuta Mall

A new 372 room Avani hotel is to be constructed at Ibn Battuta Mall following an agreement between Nakheel and Thailand’s Minor Hotels.

The 18-storey hotel, which will be managed under the Avani Hotels and Resorts brand, will be the second Nakheel hotel at Ibn Battuta.

Nakheel chairman Ali Rashid Lootah said: “Today marks yet another key milestone in our commitment to enhancing and diversifying Dubai’s hotel offering by bringing new, reputable international hospitality brands to the emirate in line with the Government’s vision.

“We are delighted to welcome Minor and the AVANI brand to Ibn Battuta Mall, which, with over 20 million visitors a year, is one of Dubai’s leading tourist destinations.”

The management agreement was signed in Bangkok by Lootah and the CEO of Minor International, William E Heinecke who said: “We are very pleased to be partnering with Nakheel for the new Avani hotel at Ibn Battuta Mall in Dubai.

“Having launched our upscale Avani brand in the region last year, we are delighted to continue the brand’s expansion in the UAE with this new hotel and we are confident that the brand will prove successful in this key market.”

The new hotel will be positioned adjacently to the recently-opened Ibn Battuta Metro Link, which directly connects to the mall.

Some of the features to the hotel include a pool, spa, gym, all day dining restaurant, coffee shop and parking.

EAHM Students Showcase Talent At Dubai Food Festival

Students from The Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management (EAHM) were selected to create their own pop-up restaurants at the Etisalat Beach Canteen, at Kite Beach as part of the Dubai Food Festival.

The students were tasked with creating an innovative F&B concept to present to a panel of EAHM judges.

This is a great opportunity for our EAHM students to gain valuable industry experience in running a business and to showcase their culinary talents in the community,” said Ashil Sandeep Shah, assistant manager, business development and consulting, The Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management.

Two winning teams were chosen including ‘Burger Print’ a concept specialising in naturally coloured burgers, including black burger buns made with squid ink.

The second, ‘Tori Matsuri’, a Japanese and Mediterranean infusion concept offers dishes including beef Maki rolls and chicken Teriyaki risotto.

The winning teams took residence in a pop up food container sponsored by Dubai Department of Tourism Commerce Marketing (DTCM) to welcome the estimated 40,000 visitors to the Beach Canteen.

To launch the event, celebrity chef Manu Feildel most widely known for his participation in Australian cookery shows ‘Ready Steady Cook’, ‘MasterChef Australia’ and ‘My Kitchen Rules’ (MKR), took part in a media event on 24 February.

DIHW Exhibitors Target Booming Saudi Tourism Market

Saudi Arabia’s food and beverage sector is expected to reach US$ 18.2 billion by 2020, driven by a growing number of tourist arrivals as the kingdom’s strategic Vision 2030 blueprint diversifies the country’s economy.

The scale of opportunity across its hospitality industry is significant and increases the importance and value of the Dubai International Hospitality Week (DIHW), the largest hotel and foodservice expo in the Middle East.

Trixie LohMirmand, senior vice president, exhibitions & events management (DWTC), said: “In order for Saudi Arabia’s hospitality industry to keep up with demand, businesses need to be able to source the most relevant products and services – whether for front or back of house.

“The six complementary trade shows at DIHW offer immediate access to the broadest and latest range of industry innovations, products, technology and services from around the world for hotels, restaurants and cafés.

“Business owners, procurement officers and hospitality chiefs will be able to fulfil all their sourcing needs under one roof, and with easy daily flights between the kingdom and Dubai, a visit to DIHW could be the most efficient and productive event of the year for Saudi hospitality.”

Saudi Arabia is the most visited country in the Middle East, with ambitious growth plans to transform a 200-kilometre stretch of Red Sea coastline into luxury resorts to attract tourists.

The country’s tourism arrivals are expected to increase 12.8% in 2017, reaching 22.6 million.

The Restaurant Development Conference held at GulfHost, is an open-door educational platform drawing experience from big name players to meet the resource demands of Saudi, and the region’s booming hospitality and food & beverage industries.

Powered by International Centre for Culinary Arts and the Middle East Food Forum, the free-to-attend conference includes confirmed delegates from companies, including Hussain Nassar Factory, Altanous Group of Restaurants, Food Supplies Llc and Aldawar Almasry.

“Our rich regional experience, expertise and award-winning, application-focused initiatives will help Saudis build and extend exciting careers within the Kingdom’s hospitality industry,” commented Sunjeh Raja, director and chief executive officer, ICCA.

Hundreds of senior buyers from major global brands around the world are also being formally hosted to promote essential collaboration and commerce in the run up to Dubai World Expo 2020.

Confirmed senior buyers from Saudi Arabia include C-level representatives from Adil Ahmad Obeid Basaad and Al Jazeerah Shopping Center who are taking part in the GulfHost Meetings Programme which facilitates top level business matchmaking.

Exhibitors across the six trade shows are also aware of the value of the platform to reach the KSA market.

Exhibiting at speciality show Seafex Middle East, South African fishing company Cederberg Fishing recognises Saudi Arabia’s growth as a vital opportunity for international business.

Founder Clifford Krige, said: “We are aware of the broad spectrum the KSA market caters for, and its growing opportunity for international brands. Seafex creates excellent exposure for our business as we look to expand globally and introduce our product on a larger scale – and markets that are benefiting from significant F&B growth such as KSA will be of key focus for us.”

Ukraine-based sweet manufacturer Yarych Confectionery participating at Yummex ME has adapted its offering to cater for the Middle East market.

Marketing director Anton Yumaiev, said: “The KSA market is very interesting because of its development and openness to products from overseas. Our products always meet the requirements of Arab markets, including being fully Halal certified. We have made some significant steps to enter KSA as we see the huge potential in this market.”

Taking place from 18 – 20 September 2017 at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), the expo brings together six influential hospitality sector shows under one roof to deliver a 360-degree offering for global hotel and restaurant groups regional hospitality networks and independent F&B business owners from Saudi Arabia and beyond.

More than 50,000 trade professionals are expected to visit the 2,000 international exhibitors participating.

DIHW includes six co-located trade shows, each providing a valuable opportunity to connect with Saudi Arabia’s food and beverage sector: GulfHost, owned and organised by Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC); The Hotel Show and The Leisure Show, owned and organised by dmg events; The Speciality Food Festival (DWTC), SEAFEX Middle East (DWTC) and yummex ME, jointly organised by DWTC and Köelnmesse.

All shows are open until 20 September 2017 and are for trade and business professionals only.

TSSC Promotes Recycling Service For Glass Bottles

TSSC was promoting its recycling service for glass bottles at GulfHost 2017, which took place from 18 – 20 September at Dubai World Trade Centre.

The company introduced PEL waste reduction technology to the UAE after signing a deal with Irish firm Orwell in 2015.

Speaking to Catering News, Rashid Bahar, business development manager, TSSC, said: “We’re doing a recycling programme for glass bottles. Any bottles used in the industry are crushed in our PEL glass crushers made in Ireland.

“We transport the glass cullets to a facility in the UAE and we process them and turn them into new bottles by supplying them to bottle manufacturers.”

The company has been providing foodservice equipment to the UAE horeca sector for 25 years and selected its most innovative products to showcase at GulfHost.

One of TSSC’s USPs is its after-sales service, and it is also working on streamlining the business and using more automation.

Bahar said: “We built our company on service, so after-sales service is one of the key strengths and that started a long time ago.

“We also come up with solutions so if you come to us and say you’re opening a restaurant we can come up with ideas that will make it more efficient and effective.”

GulfHost, organised by Dubai World Trade Centre, took place as part of Dubai International Hospitality Week.

UAE publishes excise tax law for tobacco and energy and fizzy drinks

The UAE has published the law on excise taxes relating to tobacco as well as energy and fizzy drinks that will pave the way for introducing tariffs in the fourth quarter of this year.

The UAE plans to introduce excise tariffs at a rate of 100 per cent on tobacco and energy drinks and 50 per cent on sugary drinks.

“The project diversifies the government’s revenue streams and boosts its resources, which, in turn, will strengthen the economy and ensure its sustainability,” said Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, UAE Minister of Finance, and Chairman of the Federal Tax Authority.

“This tax is set to discourage the consumption of products that negatively impact the environment and, more importantly, people’s health, while the revenues it generates will go towards supporting advanced services for all members of society,” Sheikh Hamdan added.

The UAE is expected to be the second country in the Arabian Gulf to introduce excise taxes after Saudi Arabia began implementing the tax at the same rate in June this year.

The law is expected to be followed by the publication of the value added tax, which will be implemented at a GCC-wide rate of 5 per cent starting January 1, 2018.

The introduction of VAT and excise taxes are expected to boost the inflation rate by a one-off 1.4 per cent, Khalid Al Bustani, the director general of the country’s Federal Tax Authority, said earlier this month.

Around 250 companies will be subject to the excise tax, he added.

The UAE and other GCC states are introducing taxes to make up for dwindling income from energy caused by the slide in oil prices since mid-2014.

The Federal Tax Authority will open tax registration in September of the year for companies that produce, import or store products that are subject to excise tax.

“In general, as both (UAE and Saudi excise) laws are based on a common framework established by the GCC Excise treaty, unsurprisingly there are a number of similarities notwithstanding different terminology,” said Shiraz Khan, a senior tax advisor at UAE law firm Al Tamimi & Company. “However, it is difficult to fully compare the two laws since KSA (kingdom of Saudi Arabia) has issued the law and regulations and the UAE has only published the law with most of the detail to be made available in the regulations which are yet to be issued.”

In the UAE, the excise tax will be calculated as a percentage of the retail sale prices (RSP), the Federal Tax Authority said in May.

Globally, the amount of tax levied on such items is usually based on the sugar or tobacco content or a combination of content and value, according to experts.

The publication of the excise tax law is expected to be followed by the VAT law, with bylaws for both taxes set to be issued in the fourth quarter, Mr Al Bustani said.

The implementation of the GCC-wide tax is expected to boost GDP by about 1.5 per cent with the implementation of the 5 per cent VAT, the International Monetary Fund has said.

In the UAE, VAT could generate Dh12 billion in its first year and Dh20bn in its second year, according to Sultan Al Mansouri, the Minister of Economy.

The UAE last month issued the Tax Procedures Law, setting the foundations for the planned UAE tax system, regulating the administration and collection of taxes and defining the role of the Federal Tax Authority, and paving the way for more specific legislation on VAT and excise tax.

Under PM Narendra Modi’s Bima Yojana, Profit is Private, But Liability is Public

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bima Yojana (PMFBY) collected a total of Rs 22,437 crore as premium in 2016-17. Out of this, Rs 15,100 crore has been claimed by the farmers till August 15. While the insurance companies had approved the claims for Rs 9,446 crore, only Rs 6,624 crore from that has been paid to farmers till date. This data was reported by Indian Express from an RTI filed by them.

The insurance companies stand to earn huge profits from the reinsurers, even after the approved claims are paid in full. About 80-85% of the premium from these claims have been reinsured by the companies, allowing them to lose very little on the claims made by the farmers.

Newsclick reported earlier on the performance of the insurance schemes in the first season of 2016, along with the issues arising in implementation on the ground level. Down to Earth magazine recently wrote about the wrong weather predictions by Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) that caused huge crop losses. The IMD predicted early monsoon on the basis of heavy pre-monsoon showers, without properly assessing wind patterns. Accordingly, they issued an advisory to farmers for early sowing of crops. Following the advisory, farmers sowed their crops in late April and early June. However, they were soon met with a three week long dry spell, which led to the widespread devastation of the crops. Mid-June onwards, the rainfall diminished, but the IMD issued no apology for its earlier mistake of declaring an early monsoon, and cautioning farmers about sowing their crop early.

It is in such situations that the Fasal Bima Yojana is supposed to enter the picture and save farmers from heavy losses. But no such thing happened as the banks delayed collection of premium from farmers till mid of August. Since the premium was deducted after the farmers had already suffered losses, they will not be eligible for making any insurance claims. So they end up losing their crop and additional money for the premium payment while remaining out of insurance coverage.

According to the rules of Fasal Bima, if 75% or more of the crop sowing fails for a notified crop, then the notified farmers get 25% of the total insured sum immediately. The rest of the payment is made after loss assessment. However, Down to Earth reported, that during the last Rabi season in Tamil Nadu, only two districts received the payment of the insured sum after the sowing failed.

Not only have their been gross delays in payment of claims, there has also been a complete failure on part of the insurance companies and banks in addressing the concerns of the farmers. In village of Sohna district, Haryana, no farmer has received any insurance money. They have contacted the authorities, registered formal complaints, and even sat on protests, but their claims still haven’t been paid.

No action has been taken against the insurance agencies, for this delay in payment of these claims. The CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General) audited the Yojana, and stated , “In Rajasthan, the performance of HDFC Ergo General Insurance Company was declared by the State Government to be below par for the last seven crop seasons by the end of Kharif season 2014. However, DAC & FW has not acted on the recommendation of the State Government to de-empanel the insurance company.”

A crucial part of the claims payment involves CCEs or Crop Cutting Experiments, which give the threshold yield for the crops. If a farmer has a yield which is lower than the threshold yield, he or she is eligible to make an insurance claim. As reported earlier, a massive number of CCEs are required to get the threshold yield at the level of the insurance unit, which is the village. An agriculture department official of Haryana confessed that CCEs were not conducted in all places, as the scheme has increased the department’s workload. Officials of the department, in fact, went on a strike in September last year protesting against the number of CCEs that they were expected to conduct. Farmers said, however, that when the government officials came for estimating the yield, they did not conduct any experiments, they simply asked the farmers how much the yield is and used that for deciding the threshold yield.

A report released by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) in Delhi called “Fasal Bima Yojana – An Assessment ” presents an in-depth analysis of the performance of the scheme across the country. According to their report, PMFBY is a classic case of a poor implementation of a good scheme.

They have mentioned in their report how insurance companies do not have any offices at the Tehsil level or any agents who will go to villages for assessment of claims. This is a requirement which is mandated in the crop insurance policy. Because of this, plenty of cases have been reported across the country where claims cannot be paid because the insurance company failed to send an agent to assess the loss for which the claim is being made.

Moreover, often farmers are declared ineligible for claiming insurance because they have grown a crop which is different from the one they had been insured for. This happens since the banks often enrol farmers without consulting them. Any farmer who has availed a loan is automatically enrolled in the scheme, and he or she is insured for the crop which is stated on the farmer’s KCC (Kisan Credit Card). The information on the card is almost always outdated.

Another way in which the farmers are being denied their insurance claims is by the states declaring threshold yields which are much lower than the actual yields. CSE presented a case study of Maharashtra where the declared threshold yield was less than half of what the actual crop yield generally is. So even if a farmer produces less than half of what he generally does, he will not be able to claim any insurance, since the threshold will still be lower.

If in a particularly bad agricultural season, the claims made exceed the premium collected by 35%, then the Centre will pay the excess. But there is nothing in the policy on what will be done with the excessive profits made by the insurance companies everywhere on these collected premiums. “Under PMFBY, profit is private, but liability is public,” stated the report.

CSE’s report also stated that the crop insurance scheme has played a significant role in the growth of non-life insurance industry in 2016-17. The gross direct premium of general insurance companies grew by 32%, from Rs 96,376 crore in 2015–16 to Rs 1.27 lakh crore in 2016–17. Nearly half of this growth came from crop insurance.

If the ground level issues are looked at carefully, it would seem that the crop insurance scheme has been designed without taking the reality into consideration. It can also be easily concluded that the ones benefitting from this scheme are definitely not the farmers. It is a poorly disguised welfare scheme which works for the benefit of the private insurance companies.

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are the author’s personal views, and do not necessarily represent the views of this portal.