Coronavirus continues to be a serious issue in Europe. At this time Europe is one of the hardest hit continents due to this pandemic. The European Commission has actually announced that it intends to postpone the entry into force of Regulations on Medical Devices (MDR) and In Vitro Devices (IVDR) until 2021. The European Union’s (EU) Medical Device Regulation (MDR) and In Vitro Diagnostic Regulation (IVDR), originally published on May 5, 2017 by the EU Parliament, sets forth new and important requirements for medical device and in vitro diagnostic manufacturers that distribute products in the EU.
According to experts in Pakistan, the global Coronavirus crisis is causing serious threats to Pakistan’s impoverished economy. If not improved, the government’s economic data will be shattered. Business activity in the country has shrunk in the past two years, and the government was running a difficult country with borrowings from friendly countries and the IMF.
The world is trying to fight the coronavirus pandemic. In North America, both the US and Canada extended directives of social distancing until the end of April. Russian President Vladimir Putin just gave everyone who is not considered essential business a week off with pay. However, as much as US President Donald Trump tries to be upbeat and claim by June 1st the economy will jump start, this is not feasible for a myriad of reasons and it is highly unlikely it will rebound by the fall of 2020.
Currently, Canada has 415 confirmed cases of coronavirus in all 10 provinces. In an official announcement Canada closed its borders to all non-citizens. The only exemption is US citizens. Starting March 18th, all international flights will be restricted to airports in four major Canadian cities: Calgary, Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver. Nevertheless, commercial vehicles are still allowed travel through Canada/US border check points.
This week, one of the main topics around the world is the so called “oil war” between Russia and Saudi Arabia. A myriad of publications are claiming the Russian economy will tank during this oil price war. According to the various economic models, the Russian economical crises is supposed to reach its peak in 2025. That is another reason, beside Putin’s personal aspirations, why he wants to remain in control of Russia. At that point, it could be possible for the West to weaken Russia.
The British (some of them) are waving the flag of the United Kingdom (“Union Jack”) after Brexit became official, and government buildings are highlighted in its colors, red, white, and blue. Having opened up a radically new space for political maneuvers, the country celebrates this achievement.
Reputable US publication The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) published an article this month titled “The World’s Cash Is Disappearing. Bankers Aren’t Sure Where It Went.” The article claims a strange phenomenon of the 1.5 trillion US dollars disappeared in 100 dollar bill denominations. Every month the central bank continues injections into the electronic currency in the amount of $100 billion in order to lower the volatility, but the analogue in US paper currency and precious metals disappeared without a trace. The central banks continue to increase the amounts of the paper currency being printed and they just disappear without any explanation.
International strategic expert, Nick Allan, CEO of Control Risks International, which specializes in risk management evaluations and recommendations, expected 2020 to carry five major risks affecting international politics and the global economy. These risks centered on the state of geopolitical attraction and the rise of a society activists, the growth of electronic wars, the fragility of economic and political conditions, and the rise of leaders without a vision or strategy. Strategic expert Sean Clary, Vice President of the Future of the World Foundation, saw that the world in 2030 will be more polarized, and the two experts pointed out that the world will witness a technological revolution in the next decade.
French President Emanuel Macron has not been a strong leader. France is experiencing a negative pattern and the next election will be held in 2022. France reached its zenith in global influence in 1812. Napoleon Bonaparte became the Emperor of France in 1804. The title was created for Napoleon to preserve the appearance of the French Republic and show that after the French Revolution, the feudal system was abandoned and a nation state was created.
On November 14, the NASA Inspector General Office of Audits published a report entitled NASA’s Management of Crew Transportation to the International Space Station. The audit data was collected from February 2019 to November 2019 as per the audit standards. One of the main goals of the audit is to compare the piloted programs by Boeing, Space X and Soyuz.
The European Union (EU) members will hold discussions on the November 19 in Brussels, Belgium on measures needed to stop China’s domination in the area of rare earth elements and other critical resources. The issue is relevant due to the US-China trade war and security issues. It does not help that Russia recently decided to send over 82 tones of monazite to China in the near future. Monazite is a reddish-brown phosphate mineral containing rare earth metals.
Roskosmos and Russian space programs have been experiencing certain difficulties for some time. The Roscosmos State Corporation for Space Activities is a state corporation responsible for the wide range and types of space flights and cosmonautics programs for the Russian Federation. Russia is unfortunately known for corruption and theft.
Recently, construction of the new Vostochny Cosmodrome resulted in the theft of 11 billion roubles ($171.3 million). This was confirmed by Russian press secretary Dmitriy Peskov, a Russian diplomat, translator and Turkologist. Since 2012, Peskov has been the Press Secretary for the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin.
Indian Prіmе Mіnіѕtеr Nаrеndrа Mоdі is gоіng tо Saudi Arabia оn a two-day tоur. He will rеасh Riyadh оn Oсtоbеr 28 and will mееt Sаudі Kіng Sаlmаn on October 29. The Prime Minister wіll also аddrеѕѕ thе Futurе Invеѕtmеnt Inіtіаtіvе Fоrum оrgаnіzеd bу the Sаudі Arаbіаn Gоvеrnmеnt Invеѕtmеnt Fund Agency, Sovereign Wеаlth Fund.
The Central Bank of Venezuela revealed that inflation at the end of September was 52.2%. The Venezuelan economy contracted 26.8% in the first quarter of 2019, compared to the same period of 2018, it said on Friday. This was the first report of this index by the Central Bank (BCV) so far this year. The entity also reported that the accumulated inflation since last January reached 4,679.5%, after a variation of 52.2% in September.
The US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign’s Grainger College of Engineering announced on October 14th their intend to form the Midwest Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Coalition to raise awareness of the potential for hydrogen and fuel cells to provide energy resilience and security, reduce emissions and foster economic growth.
In 1939, Operation Bernhard was a Nazi Germany project to forge British banknotes, counterfeit currencies. Originally, the project was dubbed “Andreas”. A the time the British pound was the reserve currency and was used as a main international payment method.
Nazi Germany needed forged currency to purchase raw materials for their defense industries. Counterfeiting currency was designed to solve German financial issues during World War II and also destabilize the economies of the nations they dubbed as enemies. Additionally, financing of espionage requires the use of foreign currencies. The challenge for the Nazis was to reproduce an identical paper for the banknotes and the watermark matrix. At the time, the task was given to professional counterfeiters, who were serving prison sentences. The process took close to 7 months.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi received Chinese President Xi Jinping in the scenic southern town of Chennai. The town has a historic old temple and is popular with tourists because it is suitable for surfing. In this seaside town, Xi and Modi held a few hours of one-on-one talks. Xi said on Saturday that he had a free and frank discussion with Modi.
Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has warned of a possible power shortage in 2021 and asked other officials to speed up stalled power plant projects, according to the Financial Times. In late September, Vietnamese media reported on the risk of power shortage, while a series of power plant projects were behind schedule. Power shortages could be a barrier for foreign investors and challenge Vietnam’s position as one of the countries that will most benefit from the U.S.-China trade war, according to Reuters analysis.
Joe Biden, whose campaign has been marked by repeated criticisms of the Trump administration, recently took a jab at the President’s handling of the economy. During a September town hall, Biden argued that Trump is becoming “more erratic” in dealing with the economy. The presidential hopeful claimed “the president is feeling pressure on the economy…He inherited a pretty good economy from Barack Obama, just like he inherited everything in his life.”
On September 23, 2019 Thomas Cook halted its operations. The company owned Thomas Cook Airlines and Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia. Thomas Cook was formed in 2007 by the merger of Thomas Cook AG and MyTravel Group. The group operated in two separate segments: a tour operator and an airline. Thomas Cook went into compulsory liquidation on September 23, 2019 and is now under the control of the Official Receiver. The company went into liquidation due to £1.7 billion debt. As a result, the UK Government is having to fly home over 150,000 customers from 18 countries. Brexit uncertainty contributed to the faster demise of Thomas Cook. The company was known for its all-inclusive travel model.
The Saudi monarchy experienced attacks against their oil production facilities in the last week. Tensions in the Middle East escalated following the drone attacks on the two largest oil facilities in Saudi Arabia. Yemen’s Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for the attacks.
The global economic impact will be felt, since Saudi Arabia lost more than half of their crude output via the attacks. The nation is the number one oil producer in the world, holds 5% of the global oil supply, and cut output by 5.7 million barrels per day. last year, Aramco’s net income was $111.1 billion.
Up to this point the Trump presidency has been marked with controversy, uncertainty, disapproval, and excitement. Of All of the president’s policies none embody these characteristics as well as his tariffing of Chinese imports, and the subsequent trade-war with China. This trade war has caused volatility in the stock market, increased costs to American manufacturers, and has threatened US imports into China. It has also has also helped to protect American industry and to give the US leverage against China to renegotiate trade agreements.
Brexit is the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union, after the referendum held on 23 June 2016. The HBO documentary Brexit depicts the behind the scenes experience of the referendum. The UK is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of governance that is based off of the Westminster system. Executive power rests in the hands of Her Majesty’s Government, the prime minister and the cabinet who are all members of the Privy Council. Legislative power is held within the bicameral parliament, the House of Commons and the House of Lords, the former being elected and the later appointed.
Hong Kong is presently experiencing a political crisis. Large scale use of law enforcement and military is being used to disperse the protesters. However, the system itself is failing and it will lead to additional protests. Historically, an achievement of the Freudo-Marxists was the quantum leap through the rationalistic outlook which had dominated in the Marxist tradition. Furthermore, the escalation of the crisis in Hong Kong is inevitable due to the bygone times and political reality of the Chinese territory.
If a manufacturing firm has a goal to sell products in both the US and China, locating the production in China gave them an unfair economic advantage. China imposes very heavy tariffs and regulations on almost all imported goods, making access to China’s market far more costly for the production of manufactured goods outside of the country.
- In China, weak economic data has been coming in thick and fast. The country’s statistics bureau announced that retail sales in November grew at their slowest pace in 15 years, with car sales on course for their first annual decline in nearly three decades. Industrial output was also weaker than anticipated, growing at its slowest pace in nearly three years.
- China’s economy has slowed sharply in recent months, presenting the biggest challenge to its top leader, Xi Jinping, in his six years of rule. He faces difficult choices that could rekindle growth but add to the country’s long-term problems, like its heavy debt. On the world stage, he has been forced to make concessions to the United States as President Trump’s trade war intensifies.
- The Federal Open Market Committee is expected to raise its short-term interest rate — a benchmark for many consumer and business loans — by a modest quarter-point to a range of 2.25% to 2.5% after a meeting on Wednesday. This would be its ninth hike since late 2015. The central bank forecasts three more rate hikes in 2019, but softer global growth could cause a shift in its hawkish stance, as China announced that its industrial output and retail sales had slowed in November.
- With economic growth at its weakest since the global financial crisis, Chinese policymakers are ramping up spending, pushing banks to increase lending and cutting taxes to shore up businesses and ward off a more damaging slump. November industrial output and retail sales growth numbers showed that downward pressure on the economy is increasing.
- Xi wants to see the trade war resolved sooner rather than later given the disproportionate effect of trade on the Chinese economy when compared to that of the United States. China’s exports to America amounts to a larger segment of the Chinese economy than the amount to which China-bound U.S. exports represent to the U.S. economy. Last year China exported $500 billion worth of goods to America out of a total Chinese economy of $12 trillion. The U.S. exported $130 billion goods to China out of its GDP of $19 trillion .
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