Category Archives: Economy

The Globalization of Our Discontent

NEW YORK – Fifteen years ago, I published Globalization and Its Discontents, a book that sought to explain why there was so much dissatisfaction with globalization within the developing countries. Quite simply, many believed that the system was “rigged” against them, and global trade agreements were singled out for being particularly unfair.–stiglitz-2017-12


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Posted by on December 6, 2017 in Economy



From the Caucasus to the Balkans, China’s Silk Roads are Rising

The 19th Chinese Communist Party Congress made it clear that the New Silk Roads – aka, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) – launched by President Xi Jinping just four years ago, provides the concept around which all Chinese foreign policy is to revolve for the foreseeable future. Up until the symbolic 100th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China, in 2049, in fact.

Virtually every nook and cranny of the Chinese administration is invested in making the BRI Grand Strategy a success: economic actors, financial players, state-owned enterprises (SOEs), the private sector, the diplomatic machine, think tanks, and – of course – the media, are all on board.

It’s under this long-term framework that sundry BRI projects should be examined. And their reach, let’s be clear, involves most of Eurasia – including everything from the Central Asian steppes to the Caucasus and the Western Balkans.

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Posted by on December 1, 2017 in Asia, Economy, Europe


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Too right it’s Black Friday: our relentless consumption is trashing the planet

Everyone wants everything – how is that going to work? The promise of economic growth is that the poor can live like the rich and the rich can live like the oligarchs. But already we are bursting through the physical limits of the planet that sustains us. Climate breakdown, soil loss, the collapse of habitats and species, the sea of plastic, insectageddon: all are driven by rising consumption. The promise of private luxury for everyone cannot be met: neither the physical nor the ecological space exists.

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Posted by on November 24, 2017 in Economy


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How Turkey, Iran, Russia and India are playing the New Silk Roads

Vladimir Putin, Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Hassan Rouhani will hold a summit this Wednesday in Sochi to discuss Syria. Russia, Turkey and Iran are the three power players at the Astana negotiations — where multiple cease-fires, as hard to implement as they are, at least evolve, slowly but surely, towards the ultimate target — a political settlement.

A stable Syria is crucial to all parties involved in Eurasia integration. As Asia Times reported, China has made it clear that a pacified Syria will eventually become a hub of the New Silk Roads, known as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) — building on the previous business bonanza of legions of small traders commuting between Yiwu and the Levant.

Away from intractable war and peace issues, it’s even more enlightening to observe how Turkey, Iran and Russia are playing their overlapping versions of Eurasia economic integration and/or BRI-related business.

Much has to do with the energy/transportation connectivity between railway networks — and, further on the down the road, high-speed rail — and what I have described, since the early 2000s, as Pipelineistan.

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Posted by on November 23, 2017 in Asia, Economy, Europe, Middle East


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Elon Musk Will Not Help Lead a Climate Leap

The finger snapping started at an unlikely moment, in a session called “benchmarks for racial and economic justice.” OK, not an obviously inspiring name. But as the ambitious political demands popcorned around the room, the energy surged, and the snapping reached a crescendo.

  • “End corporate welfare as we know it.”
  • “Get the combustion engine off the roads within 10 years.”
  • “A massive expansion of public housing, built on the principle of development without displacement.”
  • “All 5,000 diesel trucks servicing the port upgraded to locally manufactured electrics, financed by a new public bank.”

As the afternoon sun danced in the courtyard fountain of the Audubon Center at Debs Park, 60 movement leaders from across the city—and from a sparkling spectrum of causes—gathered to share their wildest dreams of a different Los Angeles. This was the founding meeting of a new coalition, gathered to draft a document called the “L.A. Leap Manifesto”: a vision for a carbon-free city by 2025. Over two days, a clear picture emerged of a city that values all of its residents, as well as the natural systems—water, soil, air—that we all depend upon to thrive. No one and no place to be treated as disposable.

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Posted by on November 22, 2017 in Economy, North America


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Watch “Europe’s Forbidden Colony (Part two) – Featured Documentary” on YouTube

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Posted by on November 17, 2017 in Economy


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Watch “The Business of Colonisation on Youtube

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Posted by on November 17, 2017 in Economy


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« Paradise Papers » : l’évasion fiscale met en danger nos démocraties

Le voyage par les couloirs dérobés de l’économie mondiale n’en finit pas. Après le Luxembourg en 2014, la Suisse en 2015, le Panama l’an dernier, la nouvelle enquête au long cours « Paradise Papers », menée par le Consortium international des journalistes d’investigation (ICIJ), Le Monde et 95 médias partenaires, s’arrête cette semaine sur un chapelet d’îles. Caïmans, Vanuatu, Malte, Jersey, Man ou encore Bermudes, l’archipel nord-américain où s’est établi le cabinet d’avocats Appleby, l’un des leaders mondiaux de la finance offshore, dont nos enquêteurs ont pu analyser 6,8 millions de documents internes.

En 2016, les données des « Panama Papers » avaient permis de sonder les fleuves souterrains de l’argent sale, où se mêlent les eaux grises de l’évasion fiscale et les flots noirs des revenus du crime. Cette fois, c’est une tout autre cartographie que dressent les montages financiers sur mesure des employés d’Appleby : celle des nombreuses failles du système fiscal international, explorées par ces avocats de haut vol pour permettre à une infime minorité d’ultrariches et de multinationales d’échapper aux taxes et aux impôts tout en demeurant aux limites de la loi.

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Posted by on November 15, 2017 in Economy



Wer wird Youtube-Millionär?

Das Märchen fängt mit Regen an. Aber es gibt Hoffnung auf Sonnenschein. Morgen soll die Wolkendecke aufreissen. Dann kann ein Imagefilm gedreht werden, im Freien, mit drei Outfits. Das wird sehr gut aus­sehen. Aber nun zupft Melanie, 23, erst mal braune Halme aus einem Wiesenstreifen an der Bahnhofsunterführung in Simbach am Inn.

Simbach, eine Kleinstadt in Niederbayern an der deutsch-österreichischen Grenze. Irish Pub, Solarium, Putz, der seit der Flutkatastrophe 2016 vom ersten Stock der Häuser bröckelt. Aber die Reissverschlüsse an Melanies Parka sind golden und glänzen, und aus ihrer Handtasche zaubert sie Kostbarkeiten der deutschen Drogerie: Shampoo, Conditioner, Hydro-­Gesichtscrème. Sorgfältig in Gefrierbeutel eingepackt. Sie werden ausgepackt und im Gras aufgestellt. Kameraschwenk mit dem Handy, ganz langsam, von links nach rechts. Der Regen macht alles nass. «Gewollt», sagt Melanie, «das ist der Duscheffekt.»

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Posted by on November 9, 2017 in Economy


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About the Paradise Papers Investigation

The Paradise Papers is a global investigation into the offshore activities of some of the world’s most powerful people and companies.

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and 95 media partners explored 13.4 million leaked files from a combination of offshore service providers and the company registries of some of the world’s most secretive countries.

The files were obtained by the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung.

The Paradise Papers documents include nearly 7 million loan agreements, financial statements, emails, trust deeds and other paperwork from nearly 50 years at Appleby, a leading offshore law firm with offices in Bermuda and beyond.

The documents also include files from a smaller, family-owned trust company, Asiaciti, and from company registries in 19 secrecy jurisdictions. The records range from complex, 100-page corporate transaction sheets and dollar-by-dollar payment ledgers to simple corporate registries of countries, such as Antigua & Barbuda, that do not publicly list names of company shareholders or directors.

As a whole, the Paradise Papers files expose offshore holdings of political leaders and their financiers as well as household-name companies that slash taxes through transactions conducted in secret. Financial deals of billionaires and celebrities are also revealed in the documents.

The Paradise Papers files include far more information about U.S. citizens, residents and companies than previous ICIJ investigations – at least 31,000 of them.

ICIJ collaborated with more than 380 journalists working on six continents in 30 languages. Many team members spent a year using online platforms to communicate and to share documents. Journalists tracked down court records, obtained financial disclosures of politicians in Africa, Europe, and Latin and North America, filed freedom of information requests and conducted hundreds of interviews with tax experts, policymakers and industry insiders.

Special thanks go to the the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting for supporting visual elements of the project, and Neo4j for database support.

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Posted by on November 7, 2017 in Economy


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