Thursday, February 22

Day: April 5, 2017

Chinese finance is storing up trouble for the rest of the world
Asia, ENGLISH

Chinese finance is storing up trouble for the rest of the world

    Donald Trump, US president, is to meet Xi Jinping, his Chinese counterpart, at Mar-a-Lago in Florida this week. Discussions of economics seem likely to focus on China’s trade and exchange rate policies. This would be a mistake even if the US president’s views of trade were not mistakenly fixated on bilateral imbalances. Far more challenging and important is integrating China into the financial system. US policymakers should worry about China’s capital account, not its current account. That is where danger now lies. Why does the capital account matter more? The answer is that this is where two interrelated aspects of an economy interact with the world economy: macroeconomic balances between savings and investment; and the financial system. In both respects, the Chinese econ...
Theresa May arrives in Saudi Arabia without headscarf in rejection of strict dress code for women
Arab world, ENGLISH

Theresa May arrives in Saudi Arabia without headscarf in rejection of strict dress code for women

    Theresa May has eschewed the strict Saudi Arabian dress code for women, instead descended the steps from her plane with her hair showing. The Prime Minister touched down in capital Riyadh to meet the Crown Prince and other dignitaries without a headscarf, having earlier said she would be a role model for oppressed women in Saudi. She follows in the footsteps of other political figures including Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama, in refusing to adhere to the dress code for women. Saudi Arabia enforces a conservative dress code in public places which requires women to wear a full-length robe and cover for their hair, in keeping with other restrictive laws that include a guardianship system limiting women's movement and a ban on driving, but foreign visitors do not always fo...
Handouts for diesel cars hit by toxin tax
ENGLISH, United Kingdom

Handouts for diesel cars hit by toxin tax

    Drivers of diesel cars are to be given financial help by the Government, Theresa May has hinted, as cities across the UK prepare to introduce new taxes on the vehicles. The Prime Minister said that drivers who were encouraged to buy diesel cars by previous governments, only to see the policy reversed, must now be taken into account. Mrs May said she is very conscious of the fact that there was a push towards diesel under Labour more than a decade ago because of concerns over carbon emissions . Her comments are the clearest indication yet that the Government is considering introducing a scrappage scheme to incentivise drivers to trade-in older diesel vehicles. Alternatives could include dropping plans to tax diesels entering cities and preventing councils from making diesel...
Girls as young as 9 are physically and spiritually ready for marriage: Malaysian MP
Asia, ENGLISH

Girls as young as 9 are physically and spiritually ready for marriage: Malaysian MP

    A Malaysian MP said girls as young as nine were physically and spiritually ready for marriage, as the Muslim-majority Southeast Asian country passed a law on sexual offences against children without criminalising child marriage. Shabudin Yahaya, a member of the Barisan Nasional coalition, made the comments in response to a proposal by an opposition member of parliament to amend the Sexual Offences Against Children bill to include a ban on child marriages. The proposal was voted down by the majority of parliament. They reach puberty at the age of nine or 12. And at that time, their body is already akin to them being 18 years old. So physically and spiritually, it is not a barrier for the girl to marry,’ Shabudin said on Tuesday during a debate on the bill. He also said ther...
Trump’s response to Syria gas attack: blame Obama
America, ENGLISH

Trump’s response to Syria gas attack: blame Obama

    The Trump administration responded to the gas attack in Idlib with a condemnation of the Obama administration. The scale and horror of Tuesday’s gas attack on civilians in Idlib highlighted the vacuum in the Trump administration’s foreign policymaking: the incident was met first by silence, then by criticism of Barack Obama. Donald Trump described the attack, which killed scores of victims, including many children, as a direct “consequence” of his predecessor’s Syria policy. These heinous actions by the Bashar al-Assad regime are a consequence of the last administration’s weakness and irresolution, he said in a statement. President Obama said in 2012 that he would establish a ‘red line’ against the use of chemical weapons and then did nothing. The reflex illustrated Trump’...