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Archive for 7. August 2019

The European Parliament’s Misguided Ambitions

Posted by hkarner - 7. August 2019

Ana Palacio is former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Spain and former Senior Vice President and General Counsel of the World Bank Group. She is a visiting lecturer at Georgetown University.

The European Union’s core institutions are undergoing leadership successions while besieged by well-known internal and external challenges. And yet, at a time when the EU desperately needs to be able to act effectively, it seems simply to be engaging in more political jockeying.

MADRID – In moments of political transition, initial signals make all the difference, because they set the tone for the process that follows. As new leaders take over the European Union’s core institutions, the first signs are not promising – and in particular those coming from the European Parliament.

The EU is undergoing this succession process while besieged by well-known internal and external challenges: demographic, social, and economic pressures abound, while Europe is more a geopolitical chessboard upon which global powers are playing than a player in its own right. And yet, at a time when the EU desperately needs to be able to act effectively, and is in great need of a realistic but forward-thinking vision, it seems simply to be engaging in more political jockeying. Here, the European Parliament has been ground zero. That is the message of the confirmation process for the new European Commission president – a process that began in early July, when the European Council nominated Ursula von der Leyen for the post. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Brexit: The idiot at No 10 insists EU must ‚change stance‘

Posted by hkarner - 7. August 2019

Brexit: No 10 rejects EU’s view of talks

The government has rejected claims it is unwilling to negotiate with the EU and wants talks to fail to allow a no-deal Brexit.

It comes after the EU said UK demands to remove the Irish backstop from Theresa May’s deal were unacceptable.

EU negotiators told European diplomats there was currently no basis for „meaningful discussions“ and talks were back where they were three years ago.

Downing Street said the EU needed to „change its stance“.

The European Commission said on Tuesday morning it was willing to hold talks in the coming weeks by phone or in person, „should the UK wish to clarify its position in more detail“.

A spokeswoman added the agreement negotiated by Mrs May – rejected three times by MPs – was the „best possible deal“, and could not be re-opened. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Real Cost of Trump’s Trade Wars

Posted by hkarner - 7. August 2019

Daniel Gros is Director of the Centre for European Policy Studies.

Economic analysis suggests that bilateral trade wars are unwinnable in an interconnected world. By firing his latest tariff salvo against China, US President Donald Trump has further raised the stakes in an increasingly damaging dispute – and America is likely to emerge as the bigger loser.

BRUSSELS – For a while at least, trade tensions between the United States and China seemed to have settled into a “new normal.” After both countries imposed high tariffs on a substantial proportion of each other’s goods, US President Donald Trump refrained from further escalation. But, following another inconclusive round of bilateral trade talks in Shanghai last week, Trump announced that the US will impose 10% tariffs on a further $300 billion worth of Chinese goods, effective September 1.

Should this new measure take effect, almost all US imports from China will be subject to tariffs. (The US already levies 25% tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese imports.) Although the US has also imposed non-tariff barriers in its trade war with China, reciprocal tariffs are the most visible component of the dispute – and are likely to hurt America more than China. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Trade War Becomes Currency War

Posted by hkarner - 7. August 2019

Date: 06-08-2019
Source: The Wall Street Journal By The Editorial Board

Exchange-rate shifts introduce a new risk to global growth.

President Trump claims trade wars are easy to win, but that boast looks worse than ever amid the financial carnage from his latest threat of tariffs on Chinese goods. His trade war has now become a currency war, which raises the potential economic harm to another level.

That was the ugly message Monday in financial markets, which sold off world-wide after China devalued the yuan following Mr. Trump’s threat of 10% tariffs on $300 billion in Chinese goods. Emerging-market currencies plunged, equity markets dropped 3% or so on the day, gold and the U.S. dollar soared as safe havens, and the 10-year Treasury yield fell to a stunningly low 1.74%.

The washout followed China’s decision Monday to set its yuan-dollar peg below 7 to 1, its lowest level since 2008. Mr. Trump tweeted that this is “currency manipulation,” but what did he expect? This is less retaliation than a recognition by Beijing and currency markets that decreasing trade flows with the U.S. and a softening Chinese economy create less global demand for the yuan. Mr. Trump with his tariffs is the architect of the weaker yuan he claims not to want. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Making Technology Work for Workers

Posted by hkarner - 7. August 2019

Shamina Singh is President of the Center for Inclusive Growth, Mastercard’s philanthropic hub, and Executive Vice President of Sustainability at Mastercard.

For workers, coping with the rapid technology-driven transformation of labor markets, without sacrificing dignity, autonomy, or ambition, will require a combination of economic mobility and financial security that can be delivered through a new kind of social safety net – one that puts benefits squarely in the hands of the individual.

NEW YORK – As technological innovation transforms our economies, workers all over the world are doing whatever it takes – whether crossing borders, changing jobs, or starting businesses – for a chance to thrive. Yet, social safety nets have been much slower to change, meaning that workers in transition are often highly vulnerable. What will it take to safeguard workers in the labor market of the future?

In the not-too-distant past, most workers were employed in the same industry – often at the same company – for most of their careers. But today, nearly 40% of employed people in the European Union are in atypical employment (not working under a full-time, open-ended contract) or self-employed. The average working-age American today will hold 11 jobs over their lifetime, with many working multiple jobs at once.Globally, the McKinsey Global Institute estimates that by 2030, up to 375 million workers (14% of the workforce) will need to switch occupational categories in order to meet the needs of a shifting labor market.

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