• The Ministry of Home Affairs has allowed the construction of renewable energy projects in its revised guidelines regarding lockdown measures to be taken by ministries and departments in a bid to contain the COVID-19 epidemic in the country.
  • The producers’ rate of inflation has come down to 1% in March as against 2.26% in February and 3.10% during March last year.

  • In a relief to lockdown-hit cement-makers, Andhra Pradesh Government has commenced the process cement procurement by launching a dedicated portal.
  • The online platform, YSR Nirman, has been developed to help various departments of the State Government to procure cement from suppliers for Government works such as Polavaram irrigation project, housing and roads. The portal will also display availability of cement demand and supply on a real-time basis. This was disclosed by T Vijaya Kumar Reddy, Commissioner, Information & Public Relations Department, and Member, State Level Task Force Committee.
  • Amid projection of sharp contraction in the global economy, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) cut India’s GDP (Gross Domestic Products) growth rate to 1.9% in fiscal year 2020-21 starting April 1. However, GDP growth rate is estimated to jump to 7.4% during 2021-22.

  • In a bid to minimise the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the heavily import-dependent domestic solar industry, Anand Kumar, secretary, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has asked state and port authorities to identify land sites suitable for renewable energy manufacturing and export services hubs.
  • The Plant Load Factor (PLF) of thermal power plants is likely to fall below 53% in the current financial year (2020-21) in the wake of the ongoing lockdown. A decline in PLF is expected on account of subdued demand from industrial and commercial segments and gradual ramp-up in economic activity post lockdown, CARE Ratings said in a statement.