Three Blocs

BERLIN (Own report) – The German government is proposing a new industrial strategy to shield German companies from takeovers by foreign corporations, while facilitating mergers of large German and EU corporations. The “National Industrial Strategy 2030” presented yesterday, by Germany’s Minister of the Economy Peter Altmaier intends to enable the German industry to prevail in global competition against Chinese, as well as, US corporations. So-called “national” or “European champions” are needed, even if they do not comply with current anti-trust regulations. This has been a proposal in Berlin for quite awhile. Measures are needed “to secure” or “regain Germany’s and the European Union’s economic and technological leadership.” This is also in response to a protectionist race to reindustrialize the USA and the EU, which was launched under Barack Obama and is now being accelerated by the Trump administration.

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The Chicago Boy and His President

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BERLIN/BRASÍLIA (Own report) – German business circles are placing high hopes on Brazil’s President-elect Jair Messias Bolsonaro pointing to the economic program of Paulo Guedes, designated to head a super ministry. During Augustino Pinochet’s military dictatorship, he was a professor at the University of Chile and his program resembles the economic policy of the Chilean Junta. Since about a year, Guedes has been Bolsonaro’s advisor. The Brazilian business community is hailing Bolsonaro, particularly the National Confederation of Industry (CNI), where German businesses hold strong positions. CNI is the Brazilian partner of the Federation of German Industries (BDI). German companies had already cooperated with the Brazilian military dictatorship. Bolsonaro’s victory is a deathblow to the policy of cautious redistribution in favor of impoverished segments of society, pursued by Presidents Lula da Silva and Dilma Rousseff. This policy was essentially ended with the May 2016 cold putsch – under applause of German business representatives.

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Export World Champion under Pressure

BERLIN (Own report) – With intense shuttle diplomacy, members of the German government are seeking to avert the impending US punitive tariffs on European goods and the loss of access to the important US market. Following Germany’s Finance Minster Olaf Scholz’s visit to the US capital yesterday, Chancellor Angela Merkel is expected in Washington on Friday. Already in the run up to these visits, Berlin seems ready to envisage a revival of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). This strategic decision is accompanied by a clear frontline position against China, as was resolutely demanded by the Trump administration. In addition, German-Russian business relations are increasingly under attack in Washington. At the same time, EU criticism of Germany’s unilateral trade policies is growing. Germany’s export oriented economy is particularly vulnerable to the protectionism that is gaining strength on a global scale. Berlin’s Beggar-thy-Neighbor-Policy could prove a strategic disadvantage under these new global economic conditions. Continue reading

The Economy of Secession (II)

BERLIN/BARCELONA/MILAN/ANTWERP (Own report) – As can be seen in an analysis of the separatist movements in Catalonia, Lombardy and Flanders, the deliberate promotion of exclusive cooperation between German companies and prosperous areas in countries with impoverished regions has systematically facilitated the autonomist-secessionist movements in Western Europe. According to this study, Flanders, as well as Lombardy – two already economically prosperous regions – have been able to widen the gap between themselves and the impoverished regions of Belgium and Italy, also because they have played an important role in the expansion of the German economy, the strongest in the EU. Through an exclusive cooperation with the state Baden Württemberg, Catalonia and Lombardy have been able to expand their economic lead over more impoverished regions of Spain and Italy, which has spurred their respective regional elites to seek to halt their financial contributions for federal reallocations through greater autonomy or even secession. The consequences of deliberate cooperation – not with foreign nations – but only with prosperous regions, can be seen with Yugoslavia.

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The Tesla Shock

BERLIN (Own report) – Decisive sectors of the German elite are holding onto diesel technology, causing the automobile industry to fall significantly behind its foreign competitors, according to US and British observers, who see the German automobile industry soon confronting a “Tesla shock.” Whereas, the demand for US electric automobiles is rapidly growing, in the long run, the demand for German diesel models is significantly sinking. In fact, the German government has been shielding German companies from innovation pressure, by imposing their interests, even abroad. Berlin has not only applied the brakes to the introduction of the EU’s CO2 emission limits, but also to China’s setting electric automobile quotas, to reduce pollutant emissions. In the current diesel scandal, Berlin continues to maintain its policy course.

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US accused of waging economic war on Deutsche Bank

Global Geopolitics called it, you witnessed it: The United States and Germany, though the European Union it dominates and runs, are locked in economic warfare against one another.

It’s a very dangerous game America is playing by trying to gut the largest economy in the world, the European Union, especially when nations are beginning to jump to the Sino-Soviet bloc.

 

German parliament’s economics committee chairman Peter Ramsauer says he believes the $14 billion fine being leveraged against Deutsche Bank is part of a long US tradition of waging trade and economic war.

  • Ramsauer to Welt am Sonntag: Washington has a “long tradition” of waging trade wars, if they are favorable to the US economy, and the Deutsche Bank case is an example of that.
  • “The threat to force Deutsche Bank to pay a $14 billion fine over its mortgage-backed securities business before the 2008 global crisis has the characteristics of an economic war.”
  • “Extortionate damages claims” in the case are an example of that.” Continue reading

It’s not just Deutsche. European banking is utterly broken

As was said in an earlier post, the fines imposed by the DoJ are ironically what the balance sheet looks like for Deutsche Bank, Volksagen et al. It’s economic warfare in that case.

 

Nine years after the initial eruption, it still rumbles on, with the epicentre now moved from the US to Europe. Only it’s not the same crisis; in large measure, it is completely different.

Today’s mayhem is not so much the result of reckless bankers and people asleep at the wheel of regulation, but rather of the public policy response to the last crisis itself – that is to say, regulatory overreach and central bank money printing.

All eyes are naturally focused on the specific problems of Deutsche Bank, but Deutsche is in truth no more than the canary in the coal mine. Continue reading

Diesel Emissions: EU Commission Has Known for Years about Manipluation

The European Commission insists that it knew nothing about diesel emissions manipulations perpetrated by Volkswagen and other automobile manufacturers. Documents obtained by SPIEGEL ONLINE show otherwise.

Since at least 2010, the European Commission has been in possession of concrete evidence that automobile manufacturers were cheating on emissions values of diesel vehicles, according to a number of internal documents that SPIEGEL ONLINE has obtained. The papers show that emissions cheating had been under discussion for years both within the Commission and the EU member state governments. The documents also show that the German government was informed of a 2012 meeting on the issue. The scandal first hit the headlines in 2015 when it became known that Volkswagen had manipulated the emissions of its diesel vehicles.

The records provide a rough chronology of the scandal, which reaches back to the middle of the 2000s. Continue reading

Germany heading for financial MELTDOWN set to sink the EU, says leading expert

Maybe now people can see a connection between the incoming flood of refugees, mostly young able-bodied males fleeing poverty, and the crisis Germany faces: It’s own existence and control of Europe’s throne.

 

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Germany’s economy is the glue that holds together Europe

 

WITH the biggest economy in Europe, Germany is the glue that underpins the eurozone but it could soon come unstuck.

The country’s power is set to unravel thanks to a toxic mix of misguided policies and demographics, according to one analyst.

Germany this year dropped below Japan to have the lowest birth rate in the world.

For every 1,000 people in the European country, just 8.2 babies are born a year. Continue reading

Europe Will Never Be The Same. Neither Will The World.

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RLOppenheimer New flag for EU 2015

 

 

To reiterate: People are genetically biased against change, because change means potential danger. People are also genetically biased against acknowledging this bias, because they wish to see themselves as being able to cope with both change and danger. Put together, this means that when changes come, people are largely unprepared or underprepared.

Take this beyond the bias of the individual, and apply it to that of the group (s)he belongs to, the vantage point of a society, and you find the bias multiplies and becomes self-confirming. That is, the members of the group reinforce each other’s bias. When change comes in small and gradual steps, as it mostly does, this can be said to work relatively well. When it comes in large and sudden steps, trouble ensues. Continue reading

Strategic Shifts

BEIJING/BERLIN (Own report) – Disputes over US military provocations are accompanying the German chancellor’s current visit to China. After a US Navy destroyer transited through the maritime waters claimed by Beijing near the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea, the Chinese government summoned the US ambassador. German government sources have confirmed that this conflict will play a role in the talks, Angela Merkel will hold today in Beijing, and expect discord. Berlin is already in a difficult position. The transformation of China’s economy from an investment-driven to a consumer- and service-driven growth model will be of disadvantage to the German industry. “German capital goods and automobiles” will most likely “no longer enjoy the same levels of demand growth in China as previously,” according to Sebastian Heilmann, Director of the Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS) in Berlin. Because of the structural transformation of China’s economy, the “country’s demand for access to finance and currency markets, as well as general demand for service-related know-how” has increased massively. In this respect, Great Britain “is much better positioned than Germany.” A “strategic shift is taking place in European-Chinese relations” – away from Berlin and towards London.

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Global Recession Coming – Even “Powerhouse” Germany and UK Slow “Dramatically”

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IMF 2015 Global National Debt Map – IMF

 

– IMF warn of “fresh financial crisis”
– German exports fall 5.2%, largest slump since recession of 2009
– German imports also fall 3.1%
– Many sectors across German economy see unexpected declines in factory orders and industrial production
– UK Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) report sharp rise in uncertainty
– UK PMI has fallen to lowest level since April 2013
– Hope for the best but be prepared for less benign scenarios

The IMF have been growing more vocal in recent weeks about the possibility of another financial crisis and severe recession. The head of financial stability at the IMF, José Viñals has said that this outlook “does not rely on extreme assumptions at all”. Continue reading

A New Era in the Middle East (II)

TEHERAN/HANOVER/MUNICH (Own report) – Now that the sanctions are coming to a close, German enterprises are initiating major investments in Iran and multibillion-dollar gas deals with Teheran. Over the past few weeks, several business delegations have already visited Iran. The state of Bavaria will soon open a business representation in the Iranian capital. On the one hand, German business circles have their eye on the Middle East market, because Iran “is the ventricle of an economic zone comprising a cross-border population of 400 million people.” With car sales in Iran, Volkswagen would like to compensate for the slump it is suffering on other major markets, particularly China and Brazil. On the other hand, Berlin and Brussels are trying to acquire access to Iranian natural gas. The EU Commission estimates that by 2030, Iran should be annually selling 25 to 35 billion cubic meters – probably liquid – gas to the EU. BASF natural gas subsidiary Wintershall has also shown interest. During his recent visit in Teheran, Lower Saxony’s Minister of the Economy proposed the construction of a LNG terminal in Wilhelmshaven as a German-Iranian joint venture. This is all happening at a time, when the conflict over Syria – with Iran and Russia on the one side and the West on the other – is escalating.

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Why does Germany want so many refugees? Part Two

In a post last week, I argued that Germany’s main motive for wanting to take in so many Middle Eastern refugees is the desire to cope with short-term labor shortages and long-term population decline. I also pointed out that most European nations face different circumstances and thus don’t share Germany’s motive or enthusiasm.

A few days later, the Washington Post struck the same theme in an article called “The refugee crisis could actually be a boon for Germany.” Anthony Fiola began the article this way:

The rest of Europe may see a crisis as a record number of asylum seekers flood the continent from Syria and other pockets of conflict and poverty. But Germany — the region’s economic powerhouse — is also sensing a golden opportunity.

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Germany’s Industrial Giants Ready to Reap the Benefits of Iran Deal

The crooked deal has not only set Iran on a guaranteed path to nuclear weapons, but has now made them an imminent economic powerhouse in the southern hemisphere — or, King of the South. The Obama administration had successfully bought them time and helped them rise.

Only war can be around the corner when a belligerent nation like Iran, who wants to induce the return of the 12th Imam, is given such a foundation.

 

Germany’s top ten industrial giants flew to Iran on Sunday in order to discuss future economic cooperation, after the protracted negotiation between the P5+1 and Iran finally borne fruit this week.

According to Iran’s Oil Ministry Director General for Europe, US and Caspian Countries Hossein Esmayeeli, Germany’s delegation of its top ten industrial companies headed by German Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel are due to arrive in Iran on Sunday.

“The delegation which will comprise of representatives of different German industrial companies, including Linde, Siemens, Mercedes-Daimler, Volkswagen, GIZ and tens of other German firms will arrive in Tehran in the coming days,” the minister said as quoted by Iran’s Fars News Agency (FNA).

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