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  • For more than a decade, the EU and India partnership had been slow-moving and fragmented, struggling to maintain momentum. The relationship remained far too focused on set-piece summits rather than fostering dynamic everyday linkages. Meetings, including summits, would be ritually cancelled and the paucity of high-level bilateral visits revealed a lack of political will. Unfairly large emphasis was laid on foreign policy cooperation, but on many issues divisions far exceeded commonalities, leading to disappointment and an overall delusion in the potential of the partnership.

    EU-India relations come full-circle

    For more than a decade, the EU and India partnership had been slow-moving and fragmented, struggling to maintain momentum. The last EU-India summit however shows EU-India relations have come full circle

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Consider the most extraordinary, and probably unrepeatable, feat of Chinese convergence. In 1977, the US–China gap in GDP per capita (and probably very similarly in wages) was almost 50 to 1, adjusted for the difference in price levels between the two counties. (This is based on World Bank data; according to Maddison’s data, the gap was less than half that size, but still a huge 21 to 1). It is now 4 to 1. And this is the result of an average growth rate of Chinese GDP per capita of 8.5 percent over four decades.

Ending inequality between countries: not by trade alone

Is a world of approximately equal country incomes really possible to envisage any time soon?

Each member of BRICS also has their own reason to sustain this plurilateral movement. Russia sees BRICS as a geopolitical counterweight to the eastward expansion of the Atlantic system. For South Africa, BRICS is a means to legitimize its role as a gateway to and powerhouse of the African continent. BRICS allows Brazil to collaborate in the shaping of the Asian century, despite its geographical location. China participates in the forum because it recognizes BRICS as an important vehicle for fashioning governance systems in which its political influence is commensurate to its growing economic heft. Finally, for India, BRICS is a useful bridge between its rising status as a leading power and its erstwhile identity as the leader of the developing world.

The next ten years of BRICS - will the relationship last?

Over the years, many observers have expressed skepticism about the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) initiative - and skeptics within the BRICS member states perhaps outnumber those outside

India’s digital state, unfortunately, does not engender the trust needed for cashlessness to take hold in a meaningful way. Despite a billion mobile phone subscriptions, just about 30 per cent of Indian subscribers use smartphones. A little over a third of the population has internet access. India lacks the infrastructure to reliably expand access. Connections are patchy and there is great disparity in connectivity: Seventy per cent of those with mobile internet access are in cities; only 17 per cent of Indian women use the internet, according to the Pew Research Center. With women responsible for much of household purchases, this does not provide a strong foundation for the spread of digital payments.

Going cashless: is India ready for digital?

“Time has come for everyone, particularly my young friends, to embrace e-banking, mobile banking and more such technology”. So said Narendra Modi, doubling up as the nation’s digital evangelist-in-chief. Appropriately, he “said” this via a tweet

The morning of the Forum saw three panel sessions discussing the necessary leadership from the private sector and regional and city governments, as well as ways, to accelerate investment in low carbon innovation. The California State Controller Betty Yee took part in the opening plenary. As Board Member of CALPERS AND CALSTRS, she emphasized both of the pension funds’ interest in what the businesses they are investing in are doing to address climate risks, and more and more large US firms are taking climate change seriously.

Public and private finance leaders discussed low carbon investment in New York

On Tuesday 19 September, Climate Action, in official partnership with UNEP Finance Initiative, held the second Sustainable Investment Forum 2017 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel Times Square in New York during Climate Week NYC

The Wall Street Journal reported that during last  weekend’s meeting in Montreal, Trump administration officials had said that US will not pull out of the climate agreement, and that they were willing to re-engage with the deal.

Has President Trump changed his mind on the Paris Agreement?

During the past week, more and more media report that the US stance on the landmark climate agreement is softening, leaving wide room for interpretation that maybe the US is ready to re-negotiate its participation to the Agreement

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Pages: Next

Europe

Parliament poll: Public confidence in the EU is growing

A clear majority of EU citizens now believe that EU membership is good for their country, according to a survey of how they view the EU and its institutions, released on Wednesday (18 October)

Business

BitLocation in talks to bring Bitcoin Trading to the High Street

BitLocation declines to name the UK firm, but describes it as one of the top-five FX retail groups and one of two in the UK it has had contacts with in recent weeks

Editor’s Column

In a ‘constructive’ Brexit spirit May repeats: ‘better no deal than a bad deal’

By: N. Peter Kramer

In her speech in Florence (Italy) at the end of September, UK Prime Minister May made clear that Britain will not leave the EU on March 30 2019, the date that the EU Withdrawal Bill will be enacted and the UK membership will be terminated officially

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