Revue de Presse

Global Systemic Crisis

  • Valdis Dombrovskis, Günther Oettinger, Pierre Moscovici Commission wants more centralised eurozone by 2019 - The European Commission unveiled on Wednesday (6 December) a plan that would give it more power over the eurozone, while strengthening the links with non-euro member states. As expected, the EU executive proposed to transform the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), the eurozone’s emergency fund, into a European Monetary Fund by mid-2019. The fund would still be responsible for the financial support of countries in need, with a lending capacity of €500 billion. But it would have a greater role in designing the bailout plans. It would also provide the backstop to the single resolution fund, an additional mechanism to the existing fund for failing banks. The commission also proposed to create, as early as 2019, a European finance minister to manage the fiscal and macroeconomic surveillance of member states and ... Lire
  • poland Poland Risks Being the EU’s Rogue State - Behind the noise of Brexit negotiations, the talk in the European Union this year has been that there’s potentially a bigger problem in the east. And the prospect of another rupture looks to be increasing. Poland’s de facto leader, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, hand-picked his second prime minister in two years, opting last week for western-educated Finance Minister Mateusz Morawiecki as he seeks to boost the economy after revamping the judicial system. He is another Kaczynski acolyte who has backed the increasingly authoritarian Law & Justice party’s push to seize more control of the courts, a plan condemned by the European Parliament and European Commission. The mood in Brussels is that EU institutions can no longer stand by and watch a country that’s the biggest net recipient of European aid thumb its nose without paying ... Lire
  • california Why is Southern California burning in December? A climate scientist’s answer - Southern California may get the Santa Ana winds every year, but — according to recorded history — they’ve never been like this. With relative humidities in the single digits along the coastal mountains, where a series of fires has scorched thousands of acres and destroyed more than 100 homes, the air is the driest it’s been here in recorded history, said UCLA climate scientist Daniel Swain. “The [relative] humidities right now along the coast are much drier than what you’d normally see in the interior desert in the summertime,” Swain said. “Once you get down to 1% or 2%, you’re down almost as low as is physically possible.” It’s just a pile-on of bad news for firefighters and residents on the edge of the urban-wildland interface who are the first to get hit by wind-driven brush ... Lire
  • geabox2017fr A venir, l’édition anniversaire GEAB 12 ans, et l’histoire continue ! (annonce coffret cadeau) - 12 ans de GEAB déjà, 120 numéros ce mois de décembre 2017, et c’est un vrai plaisir de compter de plus en plus de lecteurs. La fidélité de nos abonnés est l’un de nos plus chers atouts. C’est donc avec plaisir que nous offrirons le Coffret Cadeau GEAB Anniversaire disponible pour tous les réabonnements et abonnements nouveaux effectués et payés pendant la période anniversaire 1er Déc. 2017 – 1er Fév. 2018 ! Le coffret contiendra pour chaque abonné les surprises suivantes : Le livre « Europe: Communauté ou Empire (Éléments de réflexion et principes d’action à l’usage des futurs citoyens européens) » écrit par Franck Biancheri, le fondateur du laboratoire LEAP, un livre extraordinaire qui vous est offert par notre partenaire Anticipolis. Envoyez-nous l’adresse de livraison ainsi que le choix de votre langue (français ou anglais) et le livre en format papier ... Lire
  • Communauté_cvR°_fr Europe: Communauté ou Empire (Éléments de réflexion et principes d’action à l’usage des futurs citoyens européens) - “Ou alors, elle (l’Europe) peut s’enfoncer dans les ornières de l’Histoire et être le « Mozart assassiné » de la politique du XXIe siècle. Alors, il lui suffira inconsciemment de se défaire du concept et du nom de Communauté (référence à son origine innovante) pour revêtir les habits classiques de la « puissance-union », d’« États Unis »(Le problème de « l’union », c’est que pour qu’elle vive, il faut que la diversité meure. L’Histoire nous l’enseigne… Or, depuis un an, on nous parle d’Union européenne.) Un échec des individus et des minorités face à un centre et une bureaucratie qui visent à contrôler, à normer et non pas à développer. Un échec des idéaux de paix également, car un empire, c’est toujours des marches où les conflits et les guerres prolifèrent, condition sine qua non du maintien ... Lire
  • corse Un raz-de-marée nationaliste submerge la Corse - À 18 heures, dans l’ancien hôtel de ville de Bastia, le maire nationaliste, Pierre Savelli, proclamait le scrutin clos. À 18 h 01, avec un sens certain de la mise en scène, Gilles Simeoni faisait son entrée dans ce bureau symbolique où sa victoire aux municipales en 2014 avait marqué le début de la conquête de la Corse par les nationalistes. Le dépouillement est sans appel: la liste Femu a Corsica recueille 46 % des voix à Bastia. Les applaudissements fusent et Gilles Simeoni scrute son smartphone pour observer les résultats qui tombent, invariables d’un bureau de vote à l’autre: la liste Femu a Corsica de Gilles Simeoni et Jean-Guy Talamoni a littéralement écrasé ses adversaires pour ce premier tour des élections territoriales, recueillant au total 45,36 % des suffrages sur l’île… Lire la suite : Le Figaro, ... Lire
  • germ1 Allemagne 2017 : une arythmie au cœur de l’Europe - Nous prévoyons que l’Allemagne devra affronter plusieurs difficultés économiques, culturelles et politiques en 2017 et l’année suivante. En premier lieu, la hausse de l’euro nuira considérablement à la bonne tenue des exportations allemandes. La stabilisation des prix du pétrole interdit l’effet de bulle d’oxygène qu’avait occasionné la baisse enregistrée en 2015. L’échec de la stratégie des migrants met également l’Allemagne face à toutes les conséquences de sa faiblesse démographique (en termes de marché domestique de consommation et de potentiel de baisse des salaires). Nous notons des tendances centrifuges au sein de cette fédération, en particulier dues aux divergences culturelles et politiques croissantes, à l’exemple de la Bavière. Enfin, le poids de l’Allemagne de l’Est risque de devenir de plus en plus lourd à porter pour l’Allemagne productive. L’Europe a connu ... Lire
  • dw Egypt mosque bombing kills more than 300 worshippers - Militants reportedly linked to “Islamic State” have targeted a mosque in the north of Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, killing at least 305 people and wounding scores. Egyptian authorities say the death toll is likely to rise. Authorities said that shortly after the noon prayer time on Friday, men in four off-road vehicles surrounded the Al Rawdah mosque, some 40 kilometers (25 miles) west of the provincial capital, Arish, before planting explosives. After the explosives went off, the attackers opened fire at those who fled. Media reports described at least 20 masked gunmen using automatic rifles in the assault. The victims included civilians and military conscripts… Read more : Deutsche Welle, 24.11.2017
  • Chinese manoeuvres further confounding Middle East - I was in Doha, Qatar, for a conference on 13-14 November 2017, which was being held against the backdrop of the continued Saudi Arabia-led blockade of Qatar since June 2017 and the occurrence coincidentally of three other sensational, Saudi-related events on November 4. The first and most astonishing of the three events was the arrest and incarceration of dozens of Saudi princes, serving ministers, and billionaires in the Ritz Carlton Hotel, Riyadh, on charges of corruption, linked to the country’s Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman’s reform plans for Saudi Arabia. The second was the resignation of the Lebanese prime minister, announced on TV in Riyadh. The third was the firing of a missile on Riyadh airport by Houthi rebels from Yemen, which Saudi Arabia and its allies, including the United ... Lire
  • Federica MOGHERINI, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the EC meets with Abdoulaye DIOP, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mali Mali blames West for chaos in Libya - Mali blames “external intervention” for the chaos that reigns throughout Libya given the Nato-led bombing campaign in 2011. Abdoulaye Diop, Malian minister of foreign affairs, on Wednesday (22 November) said the raids were “carried out without a strategic vision, without a plan, and without the ability to manage the consequences.” The bombing campaign included French and British sorties that helped topple the dictatorship under Muammar Gaddafi. Libya has since become the main staging point of migratory flows towards Europe, is home to some 1,500 armed militia groups, and is host to open slave auctions. Addressing the European Parliament and the EU’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, Diop said it was impossible to cooperate with the Libyan state “because the only people we have to cooperate with are militias.” He then ... Lire
  • dw Leader of rebel-held Ukraine region resigns amid infighting - Igor Plotnitsky, the head of Ukraine’s rebel Luhansk region, has resigned after accusing a rival of an attempted coup. With tensions simmering in the region, is the conflict in eastern Ukraine about to escalate? Where is Igor Plotnitsky? That question appeared to have been answered on Friday evening, as the leader of the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic turned up in Moscow after several days and submitted his resignation following a week of infighting between rival factions in eastern Ukraine. “Igor Plotnitsky has submitted his resignation for health reasons,” said the head of the region’s secret police, Leonid Pasechnik, in a video posted on a rebel news portal in Luhansk. Pasechnik said he would take control of the region as acting head ahead of a new election. Plotnitsky has yet to comment ... Lire
  • geab119 Global Europe Anticipation Bulletin, your crisis time companion - Stop searching. The Future is here. Your future! Are you ready for it? Have a seat, take a deep breath… and start reading the latest Global Europe Anticipation Bulletin, your loyal personal advisor. This month, it is about geopolitics, personal finance, oil and bitcoin investment trends, global news interpretation and much more. Our confidential analyses, exclusively for you at #geab.eu.
  • alj Russia, Iran and Turkey agree to hold ‘Syrian congress’ - Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his Iranian and Turkish counterparts have supported a proposal to hold a “Syrian people’s congress” that will bring together government and opposition figures. The Russian leader on Wednesday hosted Hassan Rouhani and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, just as some Syrian opposition groups met in Saudi Arabia’s capital, Riyadh, ahead of United Nations-sponsored talks in Geneva. “The congress will look at the key questions on Syria’s national agenda,” Putin told reporters at the summit  in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, sitting alongside Rouhani and Erdogan. “First of all, that is the drawing-up of a framework for the future structure of the state, the adoption of a new constitution, and, on the basis of that, the holding of elections under United Nations supervision.” The congress is expected to also take place in Sochi ahead ... Lire
  • forum The EU has signed a deal to integrate 23 armies - It took 70 years, but the European Union finally signed a pact today (Nov. 13) agreeing to integrate military funding, weapons development, and deployment of European defenses. US president’s Donald Trump’s frequent accusations that EU countries do not pay enough into NATO has been one catalyst for them move forward with a unified plan for military cooperation. The other is that it could legitimately diminish the bloc’s dependence on US military support. EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, called the pact “historic” as “the real problem is not how much we spend, it is the fact we spend in a fragmented manner.” She also said it would strengthen the work of the US-led NATO. The UK had always resisted the idea of joint EU defense, fearing some kind of big “European army,” but ... Lire
  • spain Spain ‘ready to discuss’ greater fiscal autonomy for Catalonia - Madrid is paving the way for Catalonia to be given the power to collect and manage its own taxes, similar to the system enjoyed by the autonomous Basque country, in an attempt to defuse the crisis over an illegal referendum on independence for the region. Senior sources in the Spanish government have told the Guardian that although there remains intense opposition within the ruling People’s party (PP) to any future referendum on self-determination, there is a renewed willingness to open discussions on a new fiscal pact under which Catalonia would have greater control of its finances. “If the Catalans ask for a fiscal pact, we are ready to discuss this,” one senior source said. “The Basque country [in northern Spain] and Navarre collect their own taxes. They have their own system and ... Lire
  • temptation The Great Petroyuan Temptation - All this occurs in the context of strong pressure from the Chinese to trade their oil in yuan[1], a gigantic strategic U-turn for the country and the whole region, therefore harming numerous well-established Saudi interests. In recent days, Saudi oil exports to the US have dramatically declined, a collapse likely to disrupt US interests as well it also corresponding to an old dream of freeing the US from Saudi oil dependence. Except that, finally, it is the Saudis who reduced their oil exports more than the US reduced their Saudi imports. But in fact the US is experiencing the first positive consequences of this reduction: their trade balance with Saudi Arabia, which has always been negative, has just moved into the green thanks also to the increase in arms sales ... Lire
  • bitcoin Bitcoin: bye bye! - The star of the e-currencies has been on a roller-coaster ride lately. But so far, smart (and lucky) speculators have been able to take advantage of these dizzying ups and downs, as well as of the considerable trend appreciation. But what happens to Bitcoins nowadays is more serious. Indeed, the bitcoin community, whose decentralised nature did not allow to opt for a currency modernisation, particularly regarding the massification potential, has ended up generating competition (fork), the Bitcoin Cash, which looks like the brand new super Bitcoin. We strongly recommend that you bet on this new “option”, incompatible with the first one because of its size (eight times stronger), by separating the transaction activities and the more centralised e-gold status (flaw for the people, but quality for the states); also, it ... Lire
  • dw Poverty and social exclusion: Millions of Germans on brink - About 20 percent of people in Germany are threatened by poverty and other forms of social exclusion. According to EU statistics, close to a quarter of the bloc’s residents faced such precarious conditions in 2016. Poverty and other forms of social exclusion affect 16 million people in Germany — 19.7 percent of the population — the Federal Statistical Office reported on Wednesday as part of an EU study. The study defines threatened people as those who receive less than 60 percent of the median national income, are subjected to severe or persistent material deprivation, or live in households with “very low work intensity.” According to the study, about 16.5 percent of people in Germany face such precarious conditions because they are paid too little. The threshold for determining whether a person is threatened by economic circumstances was ... Lire
  • euobs German coalition talks collapse - The liberal Free Democratic Party (FDP) pulled out of coalition talks in Germany on Sunday (19 November), leading to an uncertain political future for the EU’s largest member state. The move is a blow to Angela Merkel, leader of the centre-right CDU and chancellor of Germany since 2005, who was expected to lead the coalition government for a fourth time. But talks between CDU, its Bavarian sister party CSU, the Greens, and FDP, progressed slowly and missed a self-imposed deadline last Thursday. FDP’s leader Christian Lindner said on Sunday that after weeks of talks, there were still many open issues and conflicting goals, but “no common basis for trust”. “It is better not to rule than to rule wrongly,” said Lindner around midnight on Sunday… Read more : EUObserver, 20.11.2017
  • francetv Le parti LREM va lancer une “grande marche européenne” en janvier - La formation d’Emmanuel Macron se prépare pour les prochaines échéances électorales. La République en marche (LREM) entend lancer, début 2018, une “grande marche” pour débattre avec les Français de l’avenir de l’Europe, a annoncé, lundi 20 novembre, son nouveau délégué général, Christophe Castaner, à l’issue d’un entretien à l’Elysée. En France, elle sera menée “dans les villages, auprès des agriculteurs qui s’inquiètent des dérives européennes, mais savent l’importance de la politique agricole commune, de nos concitoyens qui peuvent trouver que l’Europe est un amoncellement de normes…” a-t-il expliqué. LREM “sera partout en France au premier trimestre pour que nous puissions porter cette ambition” pour l’UE. Un “débat interne” sur le mode de scrutin Par ailleurs, LREM reste “ouverte” sur la question du mode de scrutin pour les élections européennes de 2019. Avec deux options : la liste nationale, qui peut “favoriser ... Lire
  • china Securing China’s financial system - On June 30, Beijing launched Bond Connect, a programme which allows international investors to invest in the Chinese bond market via Hong Kong, and vice versa[1]. In March, another system, the China Interbank Bond Market (CIBM) [2], had already been launched. Both programmes are expected to have limited impact in the short term. But the Japanese bank Nomura, in an internal note[3] dated July 7, specifies that the goal is to obtain the insertion of the Chinese bond market in the major benchmarks calculated by JP Morgan, Barclays or WGBI. This introduction would favour a large influx of capital to China, thus to the Yuan, via index funds. Nomura predicts a “reallocation of bond investments” from the rest of Asia to China. Deutsche Bank, the leading bank operating on the ... Lire
  • gu There is no such thing as western civilisation - Like many Englishmen who suffered from tuberculosis in the 19th century, Sir Edward Burnett Tylor went abroad on medical advice, seeking the drier air of warmer regions. Tylor came from a prosperous Quaker business family, so he had the resources for a long trip. In 1855, in his early 20s, he left for the New World, and, after befriending a Quaker archeologist he met on his travels, he ended up riding on horseback through the Mexican countryside, visiting Aztec ruins and dusty pueblos. Tylor was impressed by what he called “the evidence of an immense ancient population”. And his Mexican sojourn fired in him an enthusiasm for the study of faraway societies, ancient and modern, that lasted for the rest of his life. In 1871, he published his masterwork, Primitive Culture, which can lay ... Lire
  • oilprice Russian LNG Unfazed By U.S. Sanctions - Russia’s energy industry faces a new round of U.S. sanctions—including on oil projects in any location if a designated entity holds more than 33 percent. And in Europe, where Russia’s gas giant Gazprom currently holds a large share of the gas supplies, Poland and Lithuania are buying U.S. LNG in an effort to shake off Russian dominance. Despite the sanctions and cold shoulders from Poland and Lithuania, Russia still has plans to boost its LNG capacity and exports, with one of its major LNG export projects focusing on Asia, more specifically China, as its destination. The LNG project has relied on Chinese funding to bring the project to completion. By securing funding from China, Russia is not only finding alternative sources of financing in the face of U.S. sanctions; it’s also securing sales ... Lire
  • eubusiness (2) 23 EU states launch new era for European defence cooperation -  23 EU Member States – though not the United Kingdom – signed an historic pact Monday to cooperate more closely in future on security and defence in the wake of Brexit and Russian aggression. The countires – Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain and Sweden – today signed the joint notification of the launch of the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) on defence, and handed it over to the EU’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini. The possibility of the Permanent Structured Cooperation in the area of defence security and defence policy was introduced by the Lisbon Treaty. It foresaw the possibility of a number of EU member states working more closely together in ... Lire
  • euobs German coalition talks in near collapse - Talks to form a coalition government in Germany were in deadlock on Friday morning (17 November), after negotiators separated early morning without a deal in sight. A new, last chance meeting was due at midday on Friday. But wide differences remained on migration, climate and energy and finance policies between the four parties involved in the so-called Jamaica coalition, because their colours echo the Caribbean country’s flag: the centre-right CDU and its Bavarian branch CSU, the liberal FDP, and the Greens. “We need some sleep,” said Green leader Simone Peter after the overnight 15-hour discussion. “Good morning, today it continues,” chancellor Angela Merkel simply said. On Thursday, Merkel had warned that forming a coalition between parties that have never worked together at the federal level was “a very complicated task”. ... Lire
  • temptation The Great Petroyuan Temptation - All this occurs in the context of strong pressure from the Chinese to trade their oil in yuan[1], a gigantic strategic U-turn for the country and the whole region, therefore harming numerous well-established Saudi interests. In recent days, Saudi oil exports to the US have dramatically declined, a collapse likely to disrupt US interests as well it also corresponding to an old dream of freeing the US from Saudi oil dependence. Except that, finally, it is the Saudis who reduced their oil exports more than the US reduced their Saudi imports. But in fact the US is experiencing the first positive consequences of this reduction: their trade balance with Saudi Arabia, which has always been negative, has just moved into the green thanks also to the increase in arms sales ... Lire
  • bloom Euro Economy Is Heading Towards a Golden Period - Europe is no longer the sick man of the world economy. The 19-nation euro-zone bloc is already enjoying the strongest growth in a decade and now economists at Credit Suisse Group AG and Oxford Economics are declaring that it’s heading toward a golden period of low-inflationary expansion. The turnaround is striking for a region that plunged from the global financial crisis into its own sovereign debt turmoil, record unemployment and near-deflation that threatened the very survival of the currency union. While still to make up most of the ground lost in the dark years, and with productivity still weak, the upturn at least holds out the hope that some scars will start to heal. “This is euro-area growth at its best,” said Nathan Sheets, a former international economist at the Federal ... Lire
  • bloom Bitcoin Plunge Exposes a Fundamental Flaw - Virtual currency’s threat to the human environment has been hitting the headlines recently. The race to mine new Bitcoins, exacerbated by rules that make the process use more computer power as time goes on, threatens one day to consume as much power as the whole of Japan, according to Citi. Already, Bitcoin mines stacked high with customized machines whir away in Inner Mongolia, hinting at the crypto-currency’s “Mad Max” problem, as ING’s Teunis Brosens puts it. But this is a problem only as long as people are desperate for new Bitcoin, and only as long as its rules remain fixed. The dramatic events over the past three days have shown us that neither is guaranteed. The tumble in value of the granddaddy of crypto-currencies, from about $7,300 to just more than $5,600, ... Lire
  • bloom The ECB Needs an Inflation Plan, Just in Case - Nearly three weeks after the European Central Bank halved the pace of its monetary stimulus to the euro zone economy, something strange is happening in the sovereign debt market. Even as the ECB takes a little step back from quantitative easing, investors are continuing to pile into government bonds, particularly from some countries that were most affected by the crisis. The risk is that markets may be in for a rude awakening. The cases of Italy, Spain and Portugal best represent this trend. The Italian 10-year bond yield has fallen by 20 basis points to 1.82 percent since the ECB announcement. The interest rates on similarly dated Portuguese and Spanish debt have decreased, respectively, by 30 and 11 basis points, to 1.95 percent and 1.52 percent. True, the ECB has extended purchases ... Lire
  • bbc Venezuela’s debt problem: To default or to pay - As creditors meet in Caracas to renegotiate the country’s foreign debt, BBC South America correspondent Katy Watson takes a closer look at Venezuela’s debt problem and the challenges facing the government. What is the Venezuelan government proposing? President Nicolás Maduro said on 2 November that the country would “refinance and restructure” all of Venezuela’s external debt, meaning that the government would effectively renegotiate the terms of how it repays the money it owes to foreign investors. The reason President Maduro cited for the move was to “fight against the financial persecution of our country”, a reference to the US sanctions that have targeted members of the Maduro administration… Read more : BBC, 15.11.2017
  • sweede The Shock of Sweden’s Housing Market is Hitting the Country’s Currency - Can a central bank steer the housing market? Not so long ago, Sweden’s Riksbank decided: no. Now, there’s a risk that decision may backfire as the biggest property market in Scandinavia risks sinking into a correction. The evidence of price declines was so worrying on Tuesday that it contributed to a 1.5 percent slump in the krona against the euro. A weak currency puts the Riksbank’s inflation target at risk. So should it be looking at the housing market more closely? Developments in Sweden’s housing market “could spark some doubts at the Riksbank as it may affect the overall economic outlook and inflation,” Nordea analyst Andreas Wallstrom said in a note… Read more : Bloomberg, 14.11.2017
  • marketwatch Household debt rises by $116 billion as credit-card delinquencies pile up - The numbers: Household debt rose by $116 billion, or 0.9%, to $12.96 trillion in the third quarter, the New York Fed said Tuesday. That’s the highest level in nominal terms, though not when compared to the size of the economy. Credit-card debt rose by 3.1% while home equity lines of credit, or HELOC, balances fell by 0.9%. There were small gains in mortgage, student and auto debt. Flows into credit-card and auto loans delinquencies rose, with 4.6% of credit card debt 90 days or more delinquent, up from 4.4% in the second quarter, and 2.4% of auto loan debt seriously delinquent, up from 2.3%. That’s still nowhere near the 9.6% of student loan debt that is delinquent, which itself is understated because about half of those loans are currently in deferment, ... Lire
  • zimbabwe Zimbabwe: What’s happening? - A vice president sacked, fears of a Mugabe dynasty, and a military threat. What is happening today in Zimbabwe? There is growing uncertainty in Zimbabwe. Soldiers on Wednesday took over the headquarters of the state broadcaster ZBC and blocked access to government offices, but the army says this is not a military take over. President Robert Mugabe, who leads the ruling Zanu-PF party, is safe, an army spokesman has said. But as yet, there is no official word from the government or the Mugabe family as to their whereabouts. What has happened so far: The backstory Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, an ally of the army chief and a veteran of the country’s struggle for independence, was sacked on November 8 by 93-year-old Mugabe for showing “traits of disloyalty”. Mnangagwa, who fled the country soon after, was seen ... Lire
  • alj Why we are suing the Norwegian government - For the first time ever, a government is being brought to justice for opening new areas for oil and gas extraction after signing and ratifying the Paris Agreement. This historic court case is set to begin in Oslo, Norway, on November 14. Greenpeace and Norwegian environmental organisation Nature and Youth are challenging the Norwegian government in court for allowing oil companies to drill for new oil in the Arctic. For the first time in more than 20 years, the government has awarded oil licenses in a completely new area of the Barents Sea to 13 oil companies, a move that violates the country’s own constitution and contravenes the Paris Agreement. At the time that the lawsuit was filed, then UN chief Ban Ki-moon said:“The fate of the Arctic is tied to the fate ... Lire
  • David Davis, Michel Barnier EU preparing for Brexit failure, Barnier says - The EU is drawing up plans for a no deal Brexit scenario, EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier said in an interview published on Sunday (12 November). Talking to France’s Journal du Dimanche newspaper Barnier warned that people should prepare themselves for the possibility of Brexit talks collapsing. “That’s not my preferred option … But it’s a possibility. Everyone has to prepare for it, states as businesses – we are technically preparing ourselves,” Barnier said. The chief negotiator said after the latest round of talks last week that the UK needed to clarify its position on the divorce bill for talks to be able to move on to their next phase on future relations. EU leaders will gather in December to assess whether Brexit negotiations have made enough progress on the key issues of the ... Lire
  • bloom Mysterious Gold Trades of 4 Million Ounces Spur Price Plunge - Trades that moved about 4 million ounces of gold in a matter of minutes awakened the precious metal from its slumber. After 11:10 a.m. on the Comex in New York almost 40,000 contracts, each representing 100 ounces of the metal, traded in a span of 10 minutes. That triggered a sell-off, sending prices down as much as 1.1 percent. The trades jolted the market, which has seen 60-day historical volatility languishing near the lowest since 2001. The metal has struggled to sustain the pace of gains from earlier this year as the outlook for rising U.S. borrowing costs curbs demand for non-interest-bearing assets like gold. “We didn’t see any headlines, any news to make gold drop $10, but it just did,” Miguel Perez-Santalla, a sales and marketing manager at Heraeus Metals ... Lire
  • ours Manque d’anticipation, erreurs stratégiques, faiblesse politique : l’ours russe est maintenant bien réveillé - Les armes et les hommes se massent autour de ce secteur : Américains, Canadiens, Britanniques, Français, Danois, Allemands d’un côté ; Biélorusses, Russes, Moldaves, Kazakhs, et même Chinois de l’autre. Et depuis l’exercice russe Zapad 2017 et l’exercice russo-chinois en mer Baltique, Maritime Cooperation-2017, l’UE a de quoi s’inquiéter du moment où l’escalade deviendrait incontrôlable, faisant peser le risque que le moindre incident déclenche une guerre qui aurait bien entendu toutes les caractéristiques d’une guerre mondiale compte tenu des protagonistes en présence. Il devient donc vraiment urgent de faire quelque chose pour mettre fin à la séquence d’événements qui conduisent à ce piège stratégique. L’intégration des pays baltes était une erreur ; ils auraient plutôt dû faire l’objet de statuts spéciaux donnant lieu à un dialogue euro-russe. L’intégration des pays baltes dans l’Otan ... Lire
  • gu Royal purge sends shockwaves through Saudi Arabia’s elites - Saudi Arabia’s leadership has pulled off its boldest move yet to consolidate power around its young crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, arresting 11 senior princes, one of the country’s richest men and scores of former ministers in what it billed as a corruption purge. The move sidelined at least 20 senior figures, among them outspoken billionaire, Prince al-Waleed bin Talal, sending shockwaves through the ranks of the kingdom’s elites, who had long viewed senior royals as immune. The scale and targets of Saturday’s purge – ordered by royal decree from King Salman – dwarfed anything seen in Riyadh in recent years, deliberately targeting figures deemed previously to be untouchables. Figures close to the crown prince said the move aimed to reshape public behaviour in a kingdom where patronage networks often determine business deals ... Lire
  • 20171031 Nordiska rådets session i Helsingfors. Foto: Magnus Fröderberg/Norden.org Nordic people prioritise closer defence cooperation - “I wish that we stand together in the Nordic countries as the world has become strange”, said one of 3,202 Nordic people interviewed in August and September about Nordic cooperation. The quote was highlighted in the presentation of a new Nordic survey to the public on Tuesday (31 October) in relation to the Nordic Council’s yearly session. It showed that security and defence issues overall are the number one reason for people in the five Nordic countries to want cooperation. Overall 31 percent of the respondents pointed out security and defence as the most important issue for Nordic cooperation – while a similar study in 2008 instead showed that “fighting international crime” was the most important area for cooperation. A lot has happened in the world since then. Today Britain is about ... Lire
  • Paradise Papers leak reveals secrets of the world elite’s hidden wealth - The world’s biggest businesses, heads of state and global figures in politics, entertainment and sport who have sheltered their wealth in secretive tax havens are being revealed this week in a major new investigation into Britain’s offshore empires. The details come from a leak of 13.4m files that expose the global environments in which tax abuses can thrive – and the complex and seemingly artificial ways the wealthiest corporations can legally protect their wealth. The material, which has come from two offshore service providers and the company registries of 19 tax havens, was obtained by the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and shared by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists with partners including the Guardian, the BBC and the New York Times… Read more : The Guardian, 05.11.2017
  • alj Japan PM Abe: ‘All options on the table’ with N Korea -  As US President Donald Trumparrives in Tokyo on Sunday, he and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe are expected to act in lockstep in terms of their messaging on North Korea – nuclear weapons and missile development are entirely unacceptable and “all options are on the table” in terms of how this threat may be met. The political phrase “all options on the table”, of course, encompasses the possibility that the United States and Japan might jointly launch an aggressive military attack on North Korea, which they would portray as being “pre-emptive” in light of the many verbal threats that have already been issued by the regime of Kim Jong-un. At a personal level, Abe hardly needs Washington to push him into a hardline stance vis-a-vis North Korea (or China or even South Korea for that matter) because his hawkishness towards mainland Asian neighbours has been ... Lire
  • gu European arrest warrant issued for ex-Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont - A Spanish judge has issued an international arrest warrant for Catalonia’s ousted president a day after she jailed eight members of the region’s separatist government pending possible charges over last week’s declaration of independence. In the latest twist in Spain’s worst political crisis in four decades, a national court judge on Friday issued a European arrest warrant for Carles Puigdemont in response to a request from state prosecutors. Puigdemont flew to Brussels earlier this week with a handful of his deposed ministers after Spanish authorities removed him and his cabinet from office for pushing ahead with the declaration despite repeated warnings that it was illegal. Puigdemont’s Belgian lawyer has already said his client will fight extradition without seeking political asylum. Puigdemont was summoned to appear at Spain’s national court on Thursday to give evidence relating to possible charges of ... Lire
  • catalonia Catalonia. Re-thinking the political-institutional architecture of the EU - The Catalan crisis has a whiff of the Spanish civil war, proportion wise. Rajoy government’s serious mistakes in managing the crisis of the independence referendum are due to the fact that Spain does not have a far-right party (like most other western countries); this political trend is completely integrated into the classic right-wing party, Mariano Rajoy’s People Party. Thus, instead of managing with finesse, the Catalans’ unconstitutional inclinations of independence have been treated frontally in a violence resulting in radicalisation. Catalans will soon have no choice but to be independantists or traitors to the cause, whilst the majority is in reality autonomist and expects Madrid to lower down the tension. The EU which has pushed forward a Europe of the regions, most certainly with an intention to weaken the national ... Lire
  • may2 October 2017-March 2019: Theresa May resigns in favour of Philip Hammond and the Brexit negotiations are extended - Following the publication of Boris Johnson’s articles, Philip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer (Finance Minister), a defender of the Remain camp and fervent supporter of May, did not hesitate to warn Johnson, by stating “no one is unsackable”. Several British newspapers announced then a reorganisation within the British government, allowing May to show Boris Johnson the door[1]. Currently, the Prime Minister has four options: – The status quo: to negotiate under the current conditions by keeping Johnson and risking the “no deal” trail. – Resign and organise new Conservative Party elections within the Westminster Chamber to appoint a new Prime Minister – Dismiss Boris Johnson, at the risk of seeing the latter organise a non-confidence vote in the assembly (minimum 48 deputies needed) automatically inducing a parliamentary vote to ... Lire
  • may United Kingdom: Towards a May-xit - “Since there is no future, the wanderings of the past are back in Europe”. On this topic, our team finds interesting to identify some sort of an echo of the Continental Blockade[1] within the Brexit affair. There will be of course no strict parallel, but this parallel might show that Brexit is at least as much the result of a rejection of the UK by the continent as the other way around. It is a fact that the glorious decade of the UK’s reign over the EU dates back to the 1990s. From the mid-2000s onwards, the entire continent mobilised in order to put the UK back in its place. Consequently, the latter lost its tactical advantage of being a connecting point between the United States and the EU. The ... Lire
  • gu New $400m army to fight human traffickers and terrorists faces UN moment of truth - Unprecedented plans to combat human trafficking and terrorism across the Sahel and into Libya will face a major credibility test on Monday when the UN decides whether to back a new proposed five-nation joint security force across the region. The 5,000-strong army costing $400m in the first year is designed to end growing insecurity, a driving force of migration, and combat endemic people-smuggling that has since 2014 seen 30,000 killed in the Sahara and an estimated 10,000 drowned in the central Mediterranean. The joint G5 force, due to be fully operational next spring and working across five Sahel states, has the strong backing of France and Italy, but is suffering a massive shortfall in funds, doubts about its mandate and claims that the Sahel region needs better coordinated development aid, and fewer security responses, ... Lire
  • alj IAEA’s Yukiya Amano: Iran is living up to nuclear deal - What would have been a routine visit by the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) became a public relations opportunity for the Iranian government. Yukiya Amano was in Tehran on Sunday, his first visit since US President Donald Trump told Congress that Iran is not complying with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), more commonly known as the 2015 nuclear deal. The IAEA chief put a positive face on proceedings, but the stakes are high. This time, his verification of compliance was a moment of vindication for Iran and another international rebuke of the White House. “Ladies and gentleman, I am very happy to come to your country again,” Amano said during a press conference at Iran’s nuclear agency. “Since January 2016, the IAEA has been monitoring and verifying the nuclear ... Lire
  • euobs EU takes aim at UK tax perks - EU competition authorities have sunk their teeth into UK tax perks for multinationals amid a wider crackdown on aggressive tax avoidance. The European Commission said on Thursday (26 October) it had opened an “in-depth investigation” into a British law that let big corporations shift profits to offshore subsidiaries. It said the opening of the probe did “not prejudge the outcome of the investigation”. But it indicated that if the UK scheme constituted illegal state aid, then Britain could go the way of Ireland or Luxembourg in terms of EU injunctions. “We will carefully look at an exemption to the UK’s anti-tax avoidance rules for certain transactions by multinationals, to make sure it does not breach EU state aid rules,” the EU competition commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, said. The Commission’s wider crackdown ... Lire
  • euobs Madrid and Barcelona on collision course - The Catalan parliament could declare independence on Friday (27 October), while the Spanish senate is set to vote in favour of suspending Catalonia’s autonomy. “It is the parliament’s duty to proceed with what the parliamentary majority determines in relation to the consequences of the application of article 155 against Catalonia,” Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont said on Thursday. Article 155 of the Spanish constitution is the clause that allows the national government to take “all measures necessary” to make a region meet its obligations to the state. Puigdemont’s governing coalition, Junts pel Si, said it would “continue with the mandate from the Catalan people,” given in the 1 October independence referendum, which had been declared illegal by the Spanish Constitutional Court. With the support of CUP, a staunchly separatist radical left ... Lire
  • guardian EU under mounting pressure to ban arms sales to Saudi Arabia - The European Union is under mounting pressure from MEPs to ban arms sales to Saudi Arabia in response to the Gulf state’s bombing campaign in Yemen. The leaders of four political groups in the European parliament have urged the EU foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, to propose an EU arms embargo on Saudi Arabia, because of the devastating war in Yemen that has left nearly 20 million people in need of humanitarian aid. In a letter to Mogherini, seen by the Guardian, the MEP leaders accuse the EU of flouting its own rules, by selling weapons to Saudi Arabia in defiance of a 2008 common code on military exports. Mogherini has the right to propose an arms embargo, but would need to win the backing of EU member states, including the UK, one of ... Lire