Rouhani Went To Baghdad To Strengthen His Country’s Strategic Security With Iraq

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Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani speaks during a news conference with Iraq’s President Bahram Salih in Tehran, Iran, November 17, 2018

 

This was the first visit since the Iranian leader assumed office in 2013 and importantly underscored just how integral relations between the Islamic Republic and Iraq are for both parties. Much can be said about the symbolism of his warm welcome and multi-day stay in the country compared to the brief photo-ops that American presidents take in military bases every once in a while during the rare occasion that they make a surprise visit there, which shows the difference between the organic multi-millennial ties that the Iranian and Iraqi people enjoy and the master-vassal relationship that the US has to Iraq. Building upon that, Rouhani was also sending the message that Iran is the country with predominant influence in Iraq and not the US despite the latter’s current low-level military deployment and the more than $2 trillion that it spent on the eight-year-long war there. Continue reading

Russia And China Prepare To Ditch Dollar In Bilateral Trade

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In a time when many nations have gone public with their intention to ditch the dollar in part or in whole, in bilateral trade with non-US counterparts, either to prevent the US from having “veto power” of commerce courtesy of SWIFT or simply in response to Trump’s “America First” doctrine, attention has long focused on Russia and China – the two natural adversaries to the US – to see if and when they would accelerate plans for de-dollarization. Continue reading

Russia And India Ditch Dollar In Military Deals

With the US increasingly willing to use the dollar, and SWIFT, as a strategic weapon against the country’s sovereign enemies (as Iran learned every 5 or so years), Russia and India are preparing to bypass US sanctions on Moscow by using the rupee and the ruble in bilateral trade involving military deals, the Economic Times reported.

Some $2 billion in weapons deals between India and Russia have been hit as a result of the recent US sanctions, as payments get stuck. The countries are seeking to bypass such monetary bottlenecks this by switching to settlements in domestic currencies and ditching the greenback. Continue reading

The Coming China-Germany Trade Juggernaut

 

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In a post-American trade war, this emerging bloc will wield devastating power.

Stories of international angst over United States President Donald Trump’s protectionist approach are becoming more commonplace. Mr. Trump’s “buy American, hire American” catchphrase sounds good for many at home, but abroad, it is prompting a weighty reorganization of international trade relationships. And long term, the result will be a trade war that will prove ruinous to the U.S.

World trade has changed a great deal over the last several decades. The international community at large no longer depends on America’s giant import expenditures and exports. Parag Khanna of Politico wrote:

As Americans, it’s easy to assume that global trade still depends on America as the consumer of last resort. But that’s no longer true. In fact, the majority of trade in emerging-market nations is with each other, not with the U.S. In 1990, emerging economies sent 65 percent of their exports to developed nations like the U.S. and Europe, and only 35 percent to other developing countries. Today, that figure is nearly reversed. Continue reading

This is what 30 years of China trumping the U.S. on trade looks like

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By 2015, the trade imbalance ballooned to $365.7 billion in China’s favor. That not only notched a record level for U.S.-China trade but also an all-time high for any bilateral trade ever, as well.

Cost-estimating website HowMuch.net crunched the numbers and used this animated graphic to show how it exploded over those three decades. Continue reading

World order redrawn as new rivalry forms among China, Russia, US

China and Russia have been in a honeymoon of sorts since last year, when the two countries signed deals on natural gas and currency exchange, and when they conducted a joint military exercise in the East China Sea. Senior leaders from the two sides will continue to meet often this year but it remains to be seen whether the personal friendship between Putin and President Xi Jinping of China will elevate the two countries’ bilateral relationship to the level of strategic partners.

The crisis over Russian intervention in Ukraine and subsequent economic sanctions on Moscow have deepened and broadened Sino-Russian cooperation in the areas of international politics, economy, defense, energy, investment, culture and technology. The value of bilateral trade has reached US$100 billion and is expected to top US$200 billion in five years. Continue reading

Moscow & Cairo to drop USD, use national currencies in bilateral trade – Putin

Now that the Mubarak regime through political allies is back in power after restoring the country through military channels, it likely has a score to settle with Washington and how it’s going to do this is through partnering with Russia (and possibly China). Russia already has military deals in the pipeline (See also HERE) with Egypt. Once the military deals begin and the country is stabilized once more, look for further political and economic cooperation like we see here. It doesn’t look like America is heeding the call to protect its interests in Egypt and stop the spread of neo-Soviet influence.

 

Russia and Egypt might soon exclude the US dollar and use their national currencies in the settlement of accounts in bilateral trade, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview to Egyptian media ahead of his Monday visit to the country.

The issue of abandoning the dollar in trade is “being actively discussed,” Putin told Al-Ahram daily newspaper ahead of his two-day trip to Egypt. The Russian president was invited for a bilateral meeting by his Egyptian counterpart Abdul Fattah al-Sisi. Continue reading

Putin is acting on his threats

For the past five years, we have warned that Vladimir Putin intended to remove the dollar as the world’s reserve currency. He understands what the Chinese have shared (from a February 2011 article in Quishi, the official Journal of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party):

The fact that the U.S. dollar is the world’s reserve currency makes the U.S. a financial superpower . . .Therefore, for China to challenge the position of the U.S. dollar, it needs to take a path of internationalization and directly confront the U.S. dollar.

Putin has been scheming to get China and others to join him in unseating the dollar, thus ending perhaps America’s greatest strategic advantage as a superpower. Everything else is somewhat of a subterfuge. This is the real focus. The amazing thing is how little attention has been given to this truly systemic threat. Take a look at this Blog post as a reminder:

Putin’s Direct Threat: We Are Ready to Crash the Dollar (from Voice of Russia) Continue reading

Turkey, Azerbaijan lead revival of modern Silk Road

Hundreds of high-level political figures, CEOs and international experts from around the world explored the economic, political and strategic potential of the region at the third Caspian Forum in Istanbul. Experts and politicians discussed the latest about the Caspian region, particularly efforts to transport its energy resources to an eager European market. Experts described the Caspian as the centre of trade relations between East and West and as the new centre of energy for the world.

Participants at the December 5th forum also discussed the latest on transportation projects designed to establish a modern Silk Road trade route that would link Asia and Europe. Turkey and Azerbaijan have been at the centre of those efforts. Continue reading

Obama uses EU to confront Israel with tough interlinked choices: borders or nuclear-armed Iran

It doesn’t take a political genius to see how US Secretary of State John Kerry’s arrival in Amman Tuesday, July 16, for his sixth bid to bring Israelis and the Palestinians to the table, ties in with the new EU anti-Israel funding guidelines published on the same day. To avoid a head-on clash with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, the US president has loosed the Europeans in full cry against Jerusalem and its policies. European Union foreign affairs executive Catherine Ashton chairs the international negotiating forum with Iran. And so, the EU has given Tehran a broad wink that it is worth its while to come to a fresh round of nuclear diplomacy while Israel is kept on the run in the settlements-cum-borders dispute.

Israel is further weakened by its own internal political difficulties. Continue reading

East Asia moves closer together

The massive growth in trade between the major East Asian economies is not only a result of the need to reduce dependence on outside markets. It is also the logical and pragmatic consequence of ec­onomic development in each of these countries. As the ec­onomies in East Asia have reached different stages of development, they have become more complementary. Today, Japan is the biggest trading partner of China and vice versa. Recently, when Japanese prime minister Yoshihiko Noda and his trade and industry minister Yukio Edano visited India, the Japanese media compared the relevance of China and India. The gaps are enormous! Some 820 Japanese firms have set up business in India, while 22,300 Japanese companies have business bases in China. According to the latest Japanese trade statistics, by the end of last November, the accrued 2011 volume of bilateral trade between Japan and China reached over $310 billion, while at the same point of time, the bilateral trade volume between India and Japan stood at a modest $16 billion. Even this was a substantial improvement over former times.

Continue reading article: East Asia moves closer together (Financial Chronicle)