Category: World

US wants to make sure India’s data localisation plan does not stymie growth in transactions: Steven Mnuchin The US wants India to ensure that its data localisation plan does not’stymie growth’ and monetary transaction businesses are treated’fairly’,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has said. Mnuchin insisted that America has no difficulty if countries want to have data for regulatory purposes as long as they do not eliminate it . Data localisation is the practice of storing data on servers located within the territory of a country. The Reserve Bank of India had, in April last year, requested payment firms to ensure their data were saved only on local servers, setting a tight two-year deadline. US firms like Amazon, Mastercard, Visa and Google have lobbied against data localisation rules around the world including India, stressing that it would make their operations costly and more complex. Mnuchin, who was in India, said that this had been an issue of discussion between the two nations. The US has been on the issue of data localisation, Mnuchin told members of the House Financial Services Committee during a Congressional hearing on Thursday. ‘In my recent trip, we’ve had conversations. We’ve been dealing with them within the last year on this issue. We should ensure, one, US businesses are treated fairly and can compete that,’ he said. ‘We have no difficulties with if countries want to have data for regulatory purposes. It’s the matter of then eliminating data out it, and I think, we’re in a global economy, as you know,’ Mnuchin stated. ‘So this is a complicated problem that we continue to work on to be sure that our financial providers are treated fairly,’ said the Treasury Secretary in response Frank Kustoff. ‘We’ve read the media accounts about as it pertains to this data localisation, India is attempting to raise the bar, and frankly the constraints on trade as it relates to companies and startups. Can you discuss what the obstacles are for US companies operating now in India and what impact that could have?’ Kustoff asked. Describing data security as a matter of critical importance, Mnuchin said the US wants to make sure that data localisation’doesn’t stymie growth’ .

USA came along with Hong Kong. The Human Rights and Democracy Act mandates an annual review, to check whether Hong Kong has enough autonomy to justify its special status with the US, BBC reported. The US move came almost simultaneously along with a key improvement in the estuary state on Thursday where police and firemen entered a university that was under police siege for at least 10 days. I signed these bills out of admiration for President Xi, China, and the people of Hong Kong. They’re being filmed in the hope that Leaders and Representatives of China and Hong Kong will be able to amicably settle their differences leading to long term peace and prosperity for all,’ Trump said in a statement on Wednesday. China said it would take’company counter steps’ – accusing Washington of’absolutely sinister intentions’, overseas media reported. The Chinese state media said the bill was’unnecessary and groundless, and will damage exchanges between the region and the US’. The US President is looking for a deal with China, in order to finish a damaging trade war between the two nations. He had been noncommittal about whether he would sign the bill, stating he had been’with’ Hong Kong but that Mr Xi was also’an incredible man’, BBC reported. However, the bill had widespread congressional support, which meant that even if he vetoed it, lawmakers could potentially have voted to overturn his decision. Trump also signed a second bill, which bans the export of crowd-control munitions to the police in Hong Kong – such as tear gas, rubber bullets and stun firearms’ (The invoices ) have been enacted in the hope that leaders and agents of China and Hong Kong will have the ability to amicably settle their differences, resulting in long-term peace and prosperity for all,’ he added. On Sunday, Hong Kong held local council elections which were seen as a barometer of public opinion to the government and the protesters. The elections saw a landslide victory for its pro-democracy movement, together with 17 of those 18 councils now commanded by pro-democracy councillors.

UK’s latest Mahatma Gandhi statue unveiled in Manchester. LONDON: A new statue of Mahatma Gandhi, described as a gift to the UK town of Manchester, was introduced amid fanfare on Friday. The 9-foot large, 800 kg bronze statue, created by well-known Indian artist Ram V Sutar, marks among the tallest sculptures of this Father of the country outside India. “The statue of Gandhi will celebrate the universal energy of the message. The team said it had been inspired by the city’s unique civic pride that exhibited the values of non-violence and empathy after the 2017 Islamic State-claimed terrorist attack in a concert at Manchester Arena. “We’re inspired by the people of Manchester because of their strength, decency and community in the face of the unparalleled tragedy,” the statement noted. The Expense of the statue, installed outside Manchester Cathedral in the Medieval Quarter of the city, was sponsored by the Indian-origin Kamani Family in memory of their grandfather Bhanji Khanji Kamani. The performer, Ram V Sutar, is the sculptor who designed the Statue of Unity, the planet’s tallest sculpture. The project, supported by Manchester Cathedral, Manchester City Council, the Manchester India Partnership and the High Commission of India in London, marks part of ongoing initiatives across the UK to celebrate the 150th birth anniversary season of Mahatma Gandhi. “In the tumultuous times we are living in, his heritage of peace is one we could all appreciate and reflect on,” he explained. The statue, the latest addition to a number of Gandhi figurines across the UK, was planned considering the location, scale at the context of the distance and ensuring there will be necessary pedestrian and disabled access, the organisers said. Andrew Cowan, seat of the Manchester India Partnership and CEO of Manchester Airport, stated:’The unveiling of this statue is the most recent example of this’living bridge’ that exists between Greater Manchester and India. A large amount of work has become forging closer ties between the two because the creation of the Manchester India Partnership . “It is a welcome addition to our city and is sure to prove popular with everybody who visits the town centre in the years ahead.” During a 1931 trip to the UK, Gandhi had visited with the manufacturers in Lancashire, traveling from London to Blackburn via Manchester, to match with mill workers and clarify the view about the boycott of British products that was detrimental their Cottage industry. In this trip, Gandhi got a warm welcome and attracted crowds of admirers. The new statue harks back into the city of Manchester and association between Gandhi and this history.

Diaspora is 17.5 million strong, the greatest from a single nation: UN report United Nations: India is still the most significant state of origin of international migrants with a 17.5 million-strong diaspora throughout the world, and it obtained the highest remittance of USD 78.6 billion from Indians living abroad, the UN migration bureau said. The International Organisation for Migration stated in its’Global Migration Report 2020′ which the amount of migrants in 2019 is estimated at 270 million and also the destination stays the US, at nearly 51 million. In its latest global report, the IOM noted that the general figure represents a tiny fraction of the world’s population, although it’s a 0.1 percent increase on the amount indicated in its last report, released a couple of decades ago. ‘This figure remains a tiny percentage of the world’s population (at 3.5 per cent), meaning the vast majority of individuals globally (96.5 percent ) are estimated to be living in the nation in which they had been born,’ IOM’s International Migration Report 2020 said. An estimated 52 per cent are male, and almost two-thirds of migrants are currently looking for work. India continued to be the country of origin of international migrants. The report also noted that remittances climbed to USD 689 billion in 2018. The top three remittance recipients were India (USD 78.6 billion), China (USD 67.4 billion) and Mexico (USD 35.7 billion). The United States remained the top remittance-sending nation (USD 68.0 billion) followed by the United Arab Emirates (USD 44.4 billion) and Saudi Arabia (USD 36.1 billion). Although most migrants went into the US, the report confirmed other significant migration corridors from poorer countries to richer nations such as those to France, Russia, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. ‘This pattern is likely to remain the exact same for many years into the future, particularly as populations in some developing sub-regions and nations are projected to rise in coming decades, putting migration pressure on future generations, IOM said. In Africa, Asia and Europe, many international migrants remain inside their regions of arrival, but the vast majority of migrants from Latin America and the Caribbean and North America don’t. Data showed that Gulf countries have some of the quantities of temporary labour migrants from the world in which they constitute almost 90 per cent of the population. After nearly nine years of conflict, Syria is also the top refugee-originating nation, at well over six million – dwarfing Afghanistan (at around 2.5 million) – from a total of nearly 26 million. Finally, turning into the impact of climate and weather disasters, the report notes Typhoon Mangkhut from the Philippines contributed to the fact that 3.8 million people were newly displaced there in the end of 2018, the largest number internationally.

Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party would win in UK London: Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party would win a comfortable majority in Britain’s parliament if the election were held this week, according to a poll by respected research company YouGov. Britain votes December 12, together with Prime Minister Johnson hoping to secure a majority to have the ability to push through his Brexit deal to take the country out of the European Union. YouGov’s poll, published Wednesday, said if the elections were held on Thursday that the Conservatives would grab 44 chairs from the main opposition Labour party to win a 68-seat bulk. “As anticipated, the vital thing deciding the extent to which each of the seats is shifting against Labour (is) the way that seat voted at the European Union referendum” in 2016, said Chris Curtis, YouGov’s governmental research manager. The survey — the first in this campaign to forecast election results seat-by-seat — utilizes a model that properly forecast 93 percent of seats in the last general election in 2017, according to YouGov. It stated the Conservatives’ total seat count would climb to 359, compared to 211 for Labour — predicting that the left-wing party would shed 51 seats overall. Johnson, who shot over a minority government in July and been not able to rate his EU divorce bargain through parliament, has pledged to take Britain out of their bloc by January 31. If the centre-right Conservatives are returned to power in the third general election in four decades, he is promising to bring back his Brexit bargain to parliament before Christmas. One of the smaller parties in the House of Commons, the survey said the Scottish National Party (SNP) would gain eight seats to a total of 43, while the Liberal Democrats were called a total of 13 seats, Welsh party Plaid Cymru four along with the Green Party one. Labour is presently being investigated by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) after a number of complaints about alleged anti-Semitism from the party.

Ask Questions To China About CPEC: US Urges Pakistan. The Trump administration has urged Pakistanis to ask tough questions to China about the China Pakistan Economic Corridor, as a leading American diplomat launched a blistering attack on the multi-billion dollar project that the official claimed is going to take a toll on Islamabad’s market. The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a planned system of roads, railways and energy jobs linking China’s resource-rich Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region with Pakistan’s strategic Gwadar Port on the Arabian Sea. The CPEC was launched in 2015 when President Xi Jinping visited it and Pakistan envisages investment of over USD 50 billion in different projects of development in Pakistan. “We expect Pakistanis will ask Beijing tough questions on debt, liability, equity and transparency… Ask the Chinese government why it’s pursuing a development product in Pakistan, which significantly deviates from what brought China its economic achievement,” Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Alice Wells said on Thursday in a significant policy speech. “Why not the public know the price for CPEC’s most expensive project, or the way it’s being decided on debt?” “What are the long-term consequences in Pakistan of all Chinese financing clinics?” The top American diplomat requested in her comments on China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in South and Central Asia, with emphasis on the CPEC. In her speech at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Wells explained that the CPEC is a main initiative of the One Belt One Road project planning to bring Pakistan nearer to China by addressing infrastructure needs, but potentially at an unsustainable price to Pakistan. “With non-CPEC Chinese debt obligations, China’s going to require an increasing toll on the Pakistan economy, especially when the bulk of payments start to come up at the next four to six decades. Even if the loan payments are deferred, they are going to hang Pakistan’s economic development possible hamstringing Prime Minister Khan’s reform program,” Wells said. In July, the IMF had said Pakistan was facing”major financial challenges” because of weak and erratic growth and that its economy is at a crucial juncture where it requires an ambitious and daring set of reforms. At the moment, Pakistan needed a currency reserve of less than USD 8 billion, enough just to cover 1.7 months of imports. Wells stated,”Inflated prices of development and power projects is not great for the Pakistani individuals. The CPEC almost always takes the kind of financing or burdensome loans with the government profiting along with Chinese state-owned enterprises. This is hardly the’calmness and win-win alliance’ OBOR is supposed to ease.” China embraced Paris Club clinics of concessions and grant aid, or is a member of the G20, but hasn’t implemented G20 infrastructure criteria, she said. “These two actions would ensure greater transparency in lending practices as part of CPEC,” she explained. The CPEC, she stated, is based mostly on employees and provides instead of giving that company to workers and Pakistan businesses. “Pakistanis — especially enthusiastic youth — are able and willing to work on jobs that will benefit their country,” she claimed. Wells said OBOR lacks practices. Struggling can lead to unsustainable debt burdens, which can result in decreasing sovereignty and surrendering of resources. Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing has headquartered CPEC. “In actuality, the ambassador said that China would like to see its connection with Pakistan function as an example for its relations with other States,” she explained. Creating a few observations on price, debt, transparency and occupations, Wells stated according to Pakistani government statistics for every megawatt made by a finished CPEC renewable energy project developers spent an estimated, USD 1.5 billion. The cost of constructing CPEC thermal plant, per megawatt is half that, or USD 750 million, she said. What are the long-term consequences in Pakistan of Chinese financing practices, and also what are the burdens which have fallen on the new government to manage with today with an estimated USD 15 billion in debt to the Chinese authorities, and another USD 6.7 billion in Chinese commercial debt? “Because it is clear, or needs to be clear that CPEC isn’t about help,” she explained. Slamming China on transparency, Wells said lack of transparency may raise cost and the price of corruption, leading to an even sexier debt burden for Pakistan. Instead of creating work she said Chinese workers who earn money in Pakistan, take the wages back to China, leaving very little in the market are being brought in by CPEC.