China and Brazil agreed to trade in each other’s currencies just hours ahead of the BRICS summit in South Africa.
The deal, which extends over a three-year period and amounts to an exchange of about $30 billion in trade per year, marks the latest effort among two of the world’s largest emerging economies to shift the dynamics of international trade that have long favored the U.S. dollar. Continue reading
In a move instigated by residents themselves, 1,672 eligible voters are being asked whether they want the Falklands to remain an internally self-governing British overseas territory.
The result, due overnight on Monday, is not in doubt – but the scale of the “yes” vote will be closely watched as a sign of the Falklanders’ strength of feeling.
However predictable the result, the “yes” campaign has been carried out with enthusiasm.
Homes and shops are festooned with posters and flags, both the British Union Jack and the deep blue Falklands standard which includes the Union Jack and a crest with a sheep in the middle. Continue reading
AFP - Brazil is set to join the select group of countries that have nuclear-powered submarines, President Dilma Rousseff said Friday.
Rousseff stressed Brazil was committed to peace but also needed its defense deterrent, as she inaugurated a naval shipyard in Rio de Janeiro state where the country’s first nuclear-powered sub is set to be built in partnership with France.
“We can say that with these installations we are entering the select club of countries with nuclear submarines: The United States, Russia, France, Britain and China,” said Rousseff.
Known as the Metallic Structures Construction Unit, the factory in the city of Itaguai near Rio de Janeiro is part of the ambitious ProSub program launched in 2008. Continue reading
Brazil agreed Wednesday to open talks with Russia on buying surface-to-air missile batteries.
The deal was reached in the presence of Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and Brazilian Vice President Michel Temer, with negotiations due to start in March, the foreign ministry said. Continue reading
As the article hits out, the only thing propping up the European financial system are politicians — likely the same for the U.S., South American and Asian economies as well. This means they are the last line of defense, armed with nothing more than half-truths and artificial propping of the economies via central banks to keep the citizens nice, happy, calm and in the dark. If this is the case, it shouldn’t be long before a collapse comes. One could say a litmus test for the article would be to watch the reaction of the markets when another scandal breaks out among the said politicians, at home or abroad.
I want to issue a major warning to investors: the EU Crisis is going to get worse in the coming months.
I realize that most investors and analysts believe that the EU Crisis is over. Then think that because the S&P 500 is closing in on its all-time highs that things are fine in the system.
They are wrong.
The only item that held Europe together in 2012 was the credibility of EU politicians and ECB President Mario Draghi. Please note that nothing fundamental improved for the EU’s financial system: EU GDP has since re-entered a recession and EU unemployment has a hit a new record.
Indeed, the only reason things even looked better was because various Government engaged in massive interventions. In the case of Spain, this included raiding 90% of their social security fund to buy Spanish bonds so that yields would fall. Continue reading
CARACAS/BERLIN (Own report) – In the prelude to the German Chancellor’s visit to Latin America at the end of next week, government advisors in Berlin are predicting that the continent is facing a “historical turning point.” According to a new analysis by the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), it can be expected that the “resignation” of the seriously ill Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez will provoke serious upheavals – not only in Venezuela. Cuba also could be seriously affected, due to its dependence upon Caracas. Without Chávez, Alba, the international alliance that is resisting US-American and European hegemony on the continent, would be lacking a leadership, capable of achieving its objectives, says the SWP. The think tank sees herein a window of opportunity for Berlin. It can be expected that in the coming reshuffle, Brazil will be able to reinforce its standing in South America. In Berlin, this is seen as advantageous, because Brazil is one of Germany’s most important Latin American allies. In addition, writes the SWP, this opens up new opportunities for Berlin in the “promotion of democracy” and political “counseling” in Latin America. Continue reading
That deadly serious question is increasingly troubling foreign policy and security experts as the South American country and Iran – which funds Hezbollah – move ever closer.
Despite deep cultural differences, a shared antagonism toward the US has drawn Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and his Iranian counterpart, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, into an unlikely political friendship in recent years. Continue reading
As it becomes politically, economically and socially upheaved, it’s only a matter of time before the “Keys” are taken from the Western world. As it grows stronger, the Mercosur bloc could likely play a key role in ousting British influence throughout the region.
David Cameron must return the Falkland Islands to Argentina, 180 years after the territories were “forcibly stripped” from the South American country, the country’s president has claimed in newspaper adverts.
The 212-word letter, copied to Ban Ki-moon, the secretary-general of the United Nations, repeatedly refers to the Falklands as the Malvinas, the Argentine Government’s Spanish name for the islands. Continue reading
Brazil’s defense industry is booming, fueled by government incentives to modernize the country’s armed forces and develop a robust, export-oriented military industrial complex.
“Companies are happy. There is a determination to grow and invest. Five years ago, it was the opposite,” said Carlos Pieratoni Gamboa, vice-president of the Brazilian Association of Defense and Security Equipment (Abimde).
“There is a clear movement of foreign firms seeking partnerships with Brazilian counterparts,” a strategy which offers technology transfer to Brazil while foreigners gain access to government contracts that give priority to the domestic industry, Oswaldo Luiz Guimaraes, engineering manager at the Brazilian firm Jaragua, told AFP.
Jaragua, which has been boosting its defense activities, launched a joint venture with the Italian firm Oto Melara to produce cannons in Brazil and set up a maintenance center for Latin America.
Brazil sees its neighbors and other emerging countries as natural markets for its products and has stepped up military and industrial cooperation with them.
Full article: Brazil’s defense industry booms (Defence Talk)
Defense minister Arturo Puricelli says cooperation agreements that he signed with Chinese Defense Minister Liang Guanglie will strengthen ties between the Asian giant and Argentina.
He calls China an economic, political and military partner and says the two countries’ strategic positions in terms of international security are almost entirely consistent.
Argentina’s defense ministry says in a Wednesday statement that Puricelli also has visited Chinese defense contractors, viewing helicopters at one and guided weapon systems and anti-aircraft artillery at another.
Full article: Argentina signs deals with China’s military (Associated Press)
Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez is reported to have a terminal form of cancer, according to a report from veteran journalist Dan Rather, who cited an unidentified source.
“This reporter has been told that … Chávez has metastatic rhabdomyosarcoma, an aggressive cancer that has ‘entered the end stage,’” Rather wrote Wednesday on the website for his HDNet show Dan Rather Reports. “The information and the quote come from a highly respected source close to Chavez who is in a position to know his medical condition and history.”
According to Rather’s source, Chávez is expected to live no “more than a couple of months at most.“
Should this new information regarding the severity of his cancer prove to be true, the succession of power in Venezuela, which has been under Chavez’s rule since 1999, could become extremely contentious leading up to the presidential elections scheduled for October.
Full article: Hugo Chavez’s Cancer Is Terminal: Dan Rather (International Business Times)
While we in the Islands have grown well accustomed to political rhetoric from Buenos Aires over the years, these latest moves have seen everyday life made that bit harder, with the selection of food on the shelves changing, and becoming more expensive, as we have had to find new suppliers for everyday goods. But, we Falkland Islanders are resourceful people and will not be defeated by political and economic bullying. We remain resolute in our desire to maintain neighbourly relations with all our South American neighbours, including Argentina, for mutual benefit. During the 1990s, significant progress had been made in our relationship with Argentina; agreements had been reached on conservation of fish stocks and on oil exploration but Argentina unilaterally withdrew from these, something we deeply regret.
With the eyes of the world on the South Atlantic in recent weeks, one unified message continues to come from those that live in the Islands; that is our right to self-determination. The people of the Falkland Islands remain a British Overseas Territory by choice. It is our constitutional right and a fundamental freedom enshrined in the UN Charter. This right to self-determination is a value that is protected and promoted by democratic powers the world over; the Falkland Islands are no different. We are happy to talk, but our sovereignty remains non-negotiable.
Full article: Falkland Islanders have the right to choose their future (MercoPress)