Economy

‘Australia is in trouble’: The plan to fix Australia’s tax system

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Australia has more than 125 taxes at a state and federal level, but 90 per cent of revenue is raised through just 10 of them. The pressure is now on to tear up the system and start again. Eryk Bagshaw WAtoday The tax-free threshold would be scrapped, tax rates would increase for every $1000 of income earned, and savings would be targeted by the tax office under one of the most ambitious blueprints for… The proposal has been unveiled as ... Read More »

What would it take for North Korea to join the IMF?

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At the recent UN General Assembly, South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in was discussing North Korea’s strides to build relations and open up to the world. Ana Nicolaci da Costa BBC He said Kim Jong-un had even said he would be “willing to join the IMF and the World Bank and other international agencies”, Reuters reported. Those ambitions, if vague for now, cast a light on the challenges North Korea will face as it tries to become part of the global ... Read More »

Ukraine accuses Russia of violating the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea

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The Ukrainian delegation to the United Nations has accused the Russian side of violating the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea due to its brutal actions in the Sea of Azov, which, among other things, lead to blocking of maritime traffic. Ukrinform Ukraine made such a statement at the UNGA Sixth Committee meeting on the rule of law at the national and international levels, an Ukrinform correspondent reports. “Control over the Sea of Azov is a current Russian target, after the ... Read More »

In the exclusive economic zone of Latvia was invaded by Russian warship – news ZIK.UA

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In the exclusive economic zone of Latvia near the border recorded the appearance of the Russian warship. TSP This is reported by the National armed forces of Latvia in Twitter. “On 6 October in the exclusive economic zone of Latvia, at a distance of 14 nautical miles from the state border was fixed the Russian military ship “guarding”, – stated in the message. We will remind, military ships and aircraft of the Russian Federation with the beginning of the conflict ... Read More »

Japan surveying border isles to protect maritime interest, security

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Japan has started surveying border-area islands, whose owners and usage often remain a mystery, to maintain its territorial waters and far-flung locations in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ). By SATOSHI OKAMOTO/ Staff Writer The Asahi Shimbun Many of these outlying islands serve as fiducial points to mark the boundaries of territorial waters and the EEZ. Government officials also hope that updated, detailed information on ownership and usage will help protect against intrusions, occupations and… Japan has the world’s sixth largest ... Read More »

Why so many businesses are behaving badly

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While we digest the royal commission’s evidence of shocking misconduct by the banks and insurance companies, there’s another unpalatable truth to swallow: they have no monopoly on bad behaviour. Ross Gittins Brisbane Times It seems almost everywhere you look you see examples of companies behaving badly. In a major speech he gave a few months ago, the chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Rod Sims, offered a remarkable list of business household names the commission was taking proceedings ... Read More »

Cooperation needed to tackle fisheries subsidies

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In July 2016, an arbitral tribunal established that China — through failing to exercise due diligence in preventing Chinese-flagged vessels fishing in various locations in the South China Sea — had violated the… Margaret Young EastAsiaForum China had not, the tribunal found, exhibited due regard for the Philippines’ sovereign rights with respect to fisheries in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ). China was also found to have breached provisions in the Convention relating to the protection of marine environment. The findings ... Read More »

‘Prepared to go to PRISON’ Pimlico Plumbers founder REFUSES to take down anti-Brexit sign

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A TV host quizzed Remain campaigner Charlie Mullins over his anti-Brexit sign outside Pimlico Plumbers demanding to know whether it was a “good idea” as the founder claimed he is prepared to go to prison rather than take it down. Darren Hunt Express Former Conservative doner and Pimlico Plumbers founder Charlie Mullins erected a sign over his company’s London HQ proclaiming “Brexit – Nobody voted to be poorer.” RT host Bill Dod asked whether it was “wise marketing” to install the ... Read More »

EU to hit Cambodia with trade sanctions, says Myanmar may follow

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BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union told Cambodia on Friday it will lose its special access to the world’s largest trading bloc, and said it was considering similar trade sanctions for Myanmar in a toughening of EU policy on human rights in Southeast Asia. Robin Emmott, Philip Blenkinsop After months of pressure from rights groups and the European Parliament, the EU’s trade chief Cecilia Malmstrom said the bloc was ready to punish abuses in both countries by removing trade preferences. ... Read More »

Why Europe Overlooks Trump’s Threat, Increases Russian Gas Imports

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European consumers see no reason for abandoning cheap Russian pipeline gas and substituting it for expensive American super-chilled fuel. While Washington is fuming over the Russian-European energy cooperation, EU member states are increasingly buying Russian… Sputnik Despite US threats and reprimands, Europe remains stuck with Russian gas. Speaking at the Russia Energy Week (REW) forum, President Vladimir Putin highlighted that the country’s gas exports to the EU were about to reach 200 billion cubic meters (bcm) in… Why Europe Overlooks… Read More »

How to deal with the next financial crisis – take some lessons from Iceland

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It has been ten years since the global recession hit – and the perfect opportunity to rethink and reassess the crisis with the benefit of time. Iosif Kovras The Conversation Much of the focus so far has been on economic or policy failures, with the question of accountability left out of the discussion. In stark contrast to the grassroots calls for punishing those responsible, political leaders were not overly concerned with accountability, leaving bankers off the hook. This was a ... Read More »

Tanzania law punishing critics of statistics ‘deeply concerning’: World Bank

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DAR ES SALAAM (Reuters) – The World Bank said it was deeply concerned about new Tanzanian legislation which would punish anyone who questions official statistics, saying the law would undermine the production of useful and… Lawmakers last month passed amendments to the Statistics Act that would impose fines, at least three years jail time, or both, on anyone who questioned the accuracy of official figures. The attorney general said the changes were needed to… Opposition groups and other critics have ... Read More »

Pipeline Dreams

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Eastern Mediterranean gas creates new allies—and deepens old enmities John Psaropoulos the weekly Standard Athens On January 30, the deepwater drillship Saipem 12000 sent its drill bit into a cavern beneath one-and-a-quarter miles of water and a mile of rock in the eastern Mediterranean. The Italian oil and gas company Eni, which had contracted the ship, announced a week later that the cavern, called Calypso, was “an extended gas column,” containing an estimated six to eight trillion cubic feet of ... Read More »

Arctic Options: Why America Should Invest in a Future with China

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America needs to increase its engagement in the Arctic’s rapidly-changing geopolitical environment because inaction could lead to Washington losing future opportunities in the area. Alison McFarland The National Interest In August, the Arctic’s oldest and thickest sea ice broke up, releasing water on Greenland’s northern coast that typically remains frozen throughout the year. Occurring for the second time this year, the melting ice not only raises environmental concerns, but also brings the potential for geopolitical change. China presents a driving ... Read More »

Forget the pledges to act – London is still a haven for dirty Russian money

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After Salisbury, the Tories said we would get tough on rich Russians. But billionaires are still coming and sanctions are nowhere to be seen. Oliver Bullough The Guardian Britain, we’re told, has a new policy on dirty Russian money. We are finally pulling the red carpet from under the feet of the rich Russians who have turned London into a private members’ club. This new “hostile environment” was trailed in February after the security minister, Ben Wallace, watched McMafia – ... Read More »

Greedy banks and inept regulators but not much more

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It began so well. The banks were lashed as greedy institutions focussed on gouging the living – and the dead – and anything else they could squeeze a dollar out of in the pursuit of targets and bonuses. Adele Ferguson Brisbane Times It then went on to the regulators, in particular the corporate regulator, which it eviscerated for its lack of teeth and inability to do its job and enforce the law. The Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) was ... Read More »