Every big political speech draws inspiration from others, and for his party conference address, hailed by many as his most effective yet, Jeremy Corbyn drew from a wide range of sources, including a radical chartist poet and – surprising even himself – a former Conservative minister. The Labour leader’s conference speech quoted Ernest Jones, a 19th-century poet who was a prominent member of the reforming Chartist movement, which campaigned for universal suffrage. “We’re not too low the cloth to weave / but too low the cloth to wear,” quoted Corbyn from Jones’s ballad The Song of the Low. The point, he said, was that “workers know the reality and the injustice of their position”, hence Labour’s proposal to allow employees to elect a third of the seats on their company’s board. There was no mention, however, of the section of the poem which predicts that “when the trumpets ring / The thrust of a poor man’s arm … [Read more...] about Corbyn draws inspiration from past, present, left and right
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Cooperation among the five BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) has set an example of a new type of international relations, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said recently. The BRICS meet this week in Brasilia under the banner of "Economic Growth for an Innovative Future," with a focus on strengthening cooperation in science, technology and innovation, enhancing cooperation in the digital economy, more cooperation in the fight against transnational crime, money laundering and drug trafficking. Wang went on to say that the BRICS had served as a stabilizer in international volatility and an example of a new type of international relations. "The BRICS should continue to promote multilateralism, take the lead in safeguarding the international system with the UN as its core and uphold the purposes and principles of the UN Charter." Great hopes The acronym BRIC (then excluding South Africa) was created by Goldman … [Read more...] about Have the BRICS hit a wall?
Passenger car sales took a major beating in all key markets across the world in the first half of this year, the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) said on Wednesday. The biggest fall was seen in the world's biggest car market by sales, China, where new car sales were down 14% to nearly 9.9 million, putting it on track for a second year of declining sales. In June, new car sales in the Asian giant fell a little over 7% to 1.7 million. 2018 saw the first annual drop in Chinese car sales in almost three decades. The Chinese auto sector has been under a lot of pressure over the past 18 months, hurt by an economic slowdown that has dented consumer confidence, the ongoing trade dispute between Beijing and Washington, and the government's crackdown on peer-to-peer lending. Looming stricter emissions rules are also causing Chinese buyers to wait to buy new cars. "The decline in the Chinese market has been the biggest shock for the whole industry," Nigel Griffiths … [Read more...] about China slowdown, trade dispute hurt global carmakers
Royal Dutch Shell has agreed to buy gas group BG for £47bn after a plunging oil price prompted a swoop on its long-coveted takeover target. The takeover of BG, formerly the exploration arm of British Gas, will be the the energy sector’s biggest for a decade and create a company worth almost £180bn. Shell is already Britain’s largest company with a valuation of about £130bn and the combined group will be more than 50% bigger than the second largest HSBCcorporation. BG Group’s chief executive, Helge Lund, who joined in early February, will leave once the deal goes through next year, and could walk away with more than £25m. His pay deal sparked a shareholder revolt in November, forcing BG to link his earnings more closely with company performance. Lund, who stayed at BG’s head office in Reading on Wednesday instead of facing analysts and investors in London, was hired to overhaul the company. But he may now receive a windfall for keeping BG … [Read more...] about Shell agrees to buy BG Group for £47bn
As only the French can, Edouard-Francois de Lencquesaing, president of the European Institute of Financial Regulation (EIFR), knows how to get up English noses. Waving off the impact of Brexit for the EU's only global trading center, the City of London, he told an audience at the Krynica Economic Forum in Poland, "The rise of London as a global financial center was a mere accident of history." Anglo noses of all political colors were put out of joint. "Like all industries, London at some point benefitted from the proximity of commodities, traders, intermediary institutions like insurance, but like all industries, it has to change and will," de Lencquesaing continued. London dominates markets like global foreign exchange and commercial insurance and is home to international bond trading and fund management. About a third of the transactions involve clients in the EU. The financial services sector accounts for about 12 percent of Britain's GDP and employs 1.1 … [Read more...] about Will Brexit kill The City?