Economy

2017 was deadliest year for environmental activism: report

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At least 207 activists were killed, with Brazil, the Philippines and Colombia named as the most dangerous countries. Charlotte Mitchell AlJazeera Nearly four land and environmental activists were killed each week in 2017, making it the deadliest year on record, according to a new report by Global Witness. In the report, published on Tuesday, the UK-based watchdog said 207 people lost their lives last year in their fight against companies and governments that seize land and harm the environment. Latin America was once ... Read More »

Nearly half of Australian companies hit by cyber crime, PwC global survey reveals

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Australian companies are being ripped off more than ever by customers, suppliers and cyber-hackers using the dark web backed by organised crime. By senior business correspondent Peter Ryan ABC Advisory firm PwC revealed that customer fraud was now the number one economic crime in Australia, with 45 per cent of companies surveyed attacked during the past two years. PwC’s global economic crime survey, out today, warned businesses that organised crime syndicates using the dark web were becoming more sophisticated and ... Read More »

Mexican anti-poverty program targeting poor women may help men most, study finds

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Economic empowerment programs that target women may have an unintended effect: They help men instead. Nora Haenn The Conversation A growing number of economic development programs worldwide provide cash specifically to women in poor communities. Giving women access to money empowers them, the theory goes. And empowered women – especially mothers – can lift entire families out of poverty. Bangladesh’s Grameen Bank won a Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 for launching a microloan program just for women. Nine Indian states ... Read More »

Migrants are still buying into the dream of home ownership, but it’s becoming more elusive

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Recent Australian migrants are buying into the Great Australian Dream of home ownership. Brendan Coates The Conversation But rates of home ownership among recent migrants are falling, as they are among all Australians. Unless we build enough housing to match Australia’s growing population, all Australians, including migrants, will pay the price. A recent data release by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) shows 54% of permanent migrants aged 15 and over own their home, compared to 67% of Australians overall. ... Read More »

Trade war a reality, French finance minister warns

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A trade war is now a reality, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire has warned as G20 ministers gather for a summit in Argentina. BBC The current US trade policy of imposing unilateral tariffs is based on “the law of the jungle”, he said. But US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin defended the tariffs and urged the EU and China to open their markets to allow free competition. Last week, US President Donald Trump described the EU as a “foe” on trade. ... Read More »

Germany’s G20 call for multilateral trade falls on deaf US ears at summit

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German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz has added his voice to calls by the IMF and others to avoid a trade war with the US. DW But the US’ man at the G20, Steve Mnuchin, continued to threaten tariffs if US demands are not met. German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz on Saturday reiterated calls for “free and fair world trade” at the G20 meeting in Buenos Aires. Scholz went on to reject US criticism of European trade policy. “The EU pursues a very rational ... Read More »

Xi ends state visit to UAE with raft of deals signed

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The United Arab Emirates on Saturday said it agreed to set up a “comprehensive strategic partnership” with China as President Xi Jinping wrapped up a three-day visit to the Gulf country. Al-Monitor AFP “The UAE and China have agreed to enhance cooperation in all fields to higher levels and forge overall strategic partnerships,” the official WAM news agency said. It said this would “contribute to cementing and intensifying cooperation, boost joint development and prosperity, which is consistent with the common ... Read More »

David Mundell: There’s no alternative to the Brexit White Paper

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Today marks 250 days until the United Kingdom leaves the European Union. The day we will deliver on the result of the referendum and the decision of people in the UK to take back control of the UK’s laws, borders and money. David Mundell * The Scotsman Much has been achieved by the UK government as we prepare for exit day on 29 March, 2019. We have published our Future Partnership White Paper – a comprehensive and ambitious vision for ... Read More »

‘That is it!’ Tory MP delivers BRILLIANT Brexit speech Theresa May should give NOW

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BREXITEER Bob Stewart delivered the perfect Brexit speech as he called on Theresa May to toughen up against the EU in the Brexit negotiations. By ALESSANDRA SCOTTO DI SANTOLO Express Speaking on Talk Radio, the Conservative MP claimed the Prime Minister should get tougher in the Brexit talks as he delivered the perfect speech he would give if he was Theresa May. Mr Stewart claimed the Prime Minister and Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab should vow to trade with the EU under WTO rules. The ... Read More »

Get on board with China or miss out, former World Bank vice-president warns

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Australia should accommodate China’s expansion and tone down its rhetoric or risk missing out on a decade-long economic windfall, the former chief economist of the World Bank has warned. Eryk Bagshaw The Canberra Times Cautioning that a perception of Australia being “uncomfortable” with China’s rise had reached Beijing, Justin Yifu Lin – the former senior vice-president and chief economist of the World Bank – said the resources sector would pay the price for Canberra’s actions. “What is the purpose for Australia ... Read More »

The mega-machines helping China link the world

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China is creating a network of ambitious land- and sea-based transport links to connect its booming economy with those of Europe and Africa. Tom Calver BBC And it’s wasting no time – designing incredible bespoke construction machines to get the job done fast. President Xi Jinping’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), launched in 2013, aims to connect two-thirds of the world’s population across 70 countries through a network of land links (the “belt”) and sea routes (the… Officials talk about lifetime ... Read More »

Overtourism: a growing global problem

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The summer holidays are in full swing – and protests against overtourism have begun (yet again) in a number of popular European cities. Authors: The Conversation Overtourism is not a new problem. Barcelona, in particular, is at the centre of these mounting concerns about the rapid growth of tourism in cities, especially during peak holiday periods. In fact, Destination Barcelona estimates that there were 30m overnight visitors in 2017, compared to a resident population of 1,625,137. But across southern Europe ... Read More »

Brexit: Government sees off Conservative rebels to win vote on EU customs union

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MPs narrowly vote down Remainer rebel amendment that would have forced Theresa May to drastically change her Brexit plan Benjamin Kentish Independent Theresa May has narrowly avoided a humiliating Commons defeat on the customs union after another dramatic knife-edge vote. 12 pro-EU Tories voted against the government by backing an amendment that would have kept the UK in a customs union with the EU if Ms May proves unable to guarantee frictionless trade through other means by next January. However, ministers staved off a potential ... Read More »

BRICS From Above, Seen Critically From Below

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The Durban rapper Ewok captured the spirit of progressive social forces in South Africa with his condemnation of elite politics at a March 2013 protest outside the Durban International Convention Centre: “You dropping BRICS from above? We’re throwing bricks from below!” Patrick Bond CounterPunch For the second time, the leaders of the Brazil-Russia-India-China-SA (BRICS) summit in South Africa, this time at Johannesburg’s Sandton Convention Centre from July 25-27. The bloc has great potential to change the world in positive ways. But under ... Read More »

EU ‘positive’ on Russia-Ukraine gas talks

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Talks have taken place in Berlin with the EU, Ukraine and Russia over the transit of gas from Russia to Europe. The forthcoming Nord Stream 2 project has stoked Ukrainian fears of economic isolation. aos/kd (AFP, Reuters) DW The EU sounded an optimistic note on Tuesday following talks in Berlin with envoys from Moscow and Kiev over a dispute regarding future Russian gas shipments through Ukraine. According to European Commission Vice-President Maros Sefcovic, the three-way talks were “future-oriented” and “positive” although ... Read More »

EU and Japan say new trade deal is signal to the world that protectionism does not work

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European Commission said openness to trade and investment is ‘one of the best tools to… create more economic growth and jobs’ Caitlin Morrison Independent The EU and Japan have signed up to a “landmark” trade deal in a show of strength against protectionism among global economies. Japan is the EU’s second biggest trading partner after China and together the EU and Japan account for almost one third of global GDP. The deal was confirmed at a ceremonial signing in Tokyo on Tuesday, attended by ... Read More »