April 2020

Daily Top-10 Current Affairs MCQs/News (April 17, 2020) for CSS, PMS

Daily Top-10 Current Affairs MCQs/News (April 17, 2020) for CSS, PMS
Written by Shahzad F. Malik

April 17 2020: National / International Current Affairs

1. In surprise move, SBP slashes key rate by 200bps

• Industry leaders were taken by surprise when the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) announced a sharp cut of two percentage points in the key policy rate after an emergency meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) on April 16, 2020.
• The rate cut has turned the clock back to the fall of 2018, when the newly arrived Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf government had just entered into talks for a large bailout package with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the key target policy rate was raised from 8.5 per cent to 10pc. For its part, the IMF had asked for a six percentage point hike in the rate as a prior condition for programme accession, according to then finance minister Asad Umar.
• Thursday`s action took the policy rate down to 9pc, back in single digit territory for the first time since that fateful fall. It is the third rate cut in 30 days, and the second time that the State Bank has called an emergency meeting of the MPC in the past 30 days. By itself this makes the move historic since nobody can recall when in the last decade and a half at least, the policy rate was reduced so sharply and in so hurried a fashion.

2. IMF okays over $1.3bn aid to help Pakistan

• In a major support to shore up the declining reserves following the outflow of hot money, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday night approved the disbursement of$1.386 billion to Pakistan under the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) to address the economic impact of the Covid-19 shock.
• `The Executive Board of the IMF approved a purchase of Pakistan under the RFI equivalent to SDR 1,015.5 million ($1.386 billion, 50 per cent of quota) to meet the urgent balance of payments needs stemming from the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic,` the IMF said in a statement.
• With the near-term outlook deteriorating sharply, the authorities have swiftly put in place measures to contain the impact of the shock and support economic activity. Crucially, health spending has been increased and social support strengthened.

3. GB minister quits over failure to get lockdown eased

• Gilgit-Baltistan minister for works Dr Mohammad Iqbal announced his resignation here on Thursday over non-implementation of the government committee`s decision to relax lockdown in the region.
• Addressing a press conference at Gilgit Press Club, he accused the local bureaucracy of humiliating GB representatives by not implementing their decisions.
• Dr Iqbal said the GB cabinet committee, including six ministers and secretaries, had decided on Tuesday to relax the lockdown restrictions in Gilgit-Baltistan.
• The committee had decided to allow opening of markets, construction work and government offices from 6am in the morning to 1pm from Monday to Thursday while complete lockdown would be continued on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

4. Three-hour complete lockdown in Sindh today

• The Sindh government on April 16, 2020 announced that a complete lockdown would be observed on Friday from 12:00noon to 3:00pm.
• Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah met with a delegation of Ulema’s headed by Mufti Munib-ur-Rehman here on April 16, 2020 evening. The delegation members included Mufti Abid Mubarak, Mufti Rafi Rehman, Mufti Abid Saeed, Abdul Waheed, Dr Abdul Bari, Dr Adeel, Dr Saeed and others.
• The Chief Minister was assisted by Minister Religious Affairs Nasir Shah and Education Minister Saeed Ghani. Murad thanked Ulema and religious scholars for their unconditional support to contain coronavirus.

5. Appointment of President/Ceo Mr. Zafar Masud The Bank of Punjab

• Mr. Zafar Masud has joined as President/CEO of The Bank of Punjab today. He was appointed as President/CEO of The Bank of Punjab by Government of the Punjab.
• Mr. Masud brings with him 27 years of rich and diversified experience as an International Banker and Entrepreneur, served at top positions at multinational banks in Pakistan and abroad. He has extensive experience of working at Board of Directors level including State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), Barclays Bank
• Southern Africa and National Bank of Pakistan. He had earlier worked as Director General – National Savings, Ministry of Finance, Government of Pakistan, CEO (Interim) at Infra Zamin Pakistan and Founding Partner Burj Capital.

6. Torkham border to be opened temporarily for stranded Pakistanis

• Pakistani and Afghan officials agreed to open the Torkham border temporarily to bring back stranded Pakistani nationals on April 16, 2020.
• Officials in Torkham said that a joint meeting of Pak and Afghan officials attended by Pakistani armed forces personnel, Deputy Commissioner Khyber Senator Taj Muhammad, tribal elder
• Malik Darya Khan, and high-ups of Afghan forces decided to bring back trapped Pakistan nationals on Saturday, 18 April and Tuesday 21 April.

7. UN calls to protect children from COVID-19 consequences

• The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on April 16, 2020 on families and global leaders to “protect our children,” who stand to suffer severe consequences of the pandemic even if they are at lower risk.
• “I appeal to families everywhere, and leaders at all levels: protect our children,” Guterres said in a statement, while presenting a report on the pandemic’s impact on children.
• “With the global recession gathering pace, there could be hundreds of thousands of additional child deaths in 2020.” According to the UN, this estimate could in one year destroy the progress made over the last two or three in lowering the infant mortality rate.

8. Israeli president asks parliament to choose PM

• Israel`s president on April 16, 2020 asked the Knesset to choose a new prime minister, giving parliament three weeks to agree upon a leader or plunge the country into an unprecedented fourth consecutive election in just over a year.
• President Reuven Rivlin made the move after his prime minister-designate, former military chief Benny Gantz, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu failed to reach a power-sharing deal by a midnight deadline.
• The bitter rivals had pledged to form an emergency government to steer the country through the coronavirus crisis, which has ravaged the economy and sent unemployment to record highs. But after weeks of talks, including a final 48-hour extension granted by Rivlin, the president said he had lost confidence in their chances of striking a deal.

9. Syria denounced in UN over chemical weapons

• UN Security Council members Britain, Estonia and Germany denounced Syria for a lack of accountability after being accused of conducting chemical weapons attacks in 2017.
• The accusations came in speeches delivered during a closed door Security Council videoconference, and later made public despite confidentiality rules.
• The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons released a report April 8 blaming the Syrian military for chemical weapons attacks on the village of Lataminah in northern Syria in 2017.

10. US virus job losses hit 22 million as Trump eyes restart

• Job losses from the coronavirus pandemic in the United States reached 22 million on April 16, 2020, government data said, as President Donald Trump vowed to unveil plans to re-open the world´s largest economy.
• The new weekly unemployment claims data from the Labor Department indicates US employers purged 5.2 million jobs last week, a massive number brought about by business shutdowns and movement restrictions ordered to stop the virus´s spread.
• And separate Census Bureau data detailed the virus´s damage to the housing market, with homebuilding sinking by more than 22 percent in March, while a Federal Reserve report showed plunging manufacturing activity in the northeastern US.

Daily Top-10 Current Affairs MCQs/News (April 17, 2020) for CSS, PMS

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About the author

Shahzad F. Malik

Shahzad Faisal Malik is the administrator of CSSTimes.pk and is responsible for managing the content, design, and overall direction of the blog. He has a strong background in Competitive Exams and is passionate and sharing information with others.
Shahzad Faisal Malik has worked as a Graphic Designer/Content Creator at CSSTimes in the past. In his free time, Shahzad Faisal Malik enjoys watching Cricket, writing blogs for different websites and is always on the lookout for new and interesting content to share with the readers of this website.
As the website administrator, Shahzad Faisal Malik is dedicated to providing high-quality content and fostering a welcoming and engaging community for readers. He looks forward to connecting with readers and hearing their thoughts and feedback on the website.

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