Philips shifting ‘hundreds of millions’ of production due to trade war | Reuters

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – The trade war between Washington and Beijing is forcing Dutch health technology company Philips to move “hundreds of millions” of euros worth of production from the United States to China, and vice versa, to avoid punitive tariffs.


Source: Philips shifting ‘hundreds of millions’ of production due to trade war | Reuters

How Trump’s trade war affects working-class Americans : The Conversation

President Donald Trump justifies tariffs on imports by arguing that “unfair trade policies” have harmed American workers. This has led to a trade war in which the U.S. and China have placed tit-for-tat tariffs on each other’s products.

Most recently, China said it’s ready to slap tariffs on US$60 billion in U.S. imports if Trump goes ahead with his threat to tax another $200 billion of Chinese goods.

Since the president claims to be acting on behalf of working-class Americans, it’s fair to ask: How do tariffs actually affect them?

Scholars of international political economy, such as myself, recognize that trade hasn’t always been good for poorer Americans. However, the economic fundamentals are clear: Tariffs make things worse.


Source: How Trump’s trade war affects working-class Americans :  The Conversation

| Human Rights Watch

Plus: UN should act in South Sudan; East African Bishops should support education for pregnant teens; free Khayrullo Mirsaidov; children with disabilities will be able to attend school in Serbia; victory for labor rights in Thailand; and one year without Liu Xiaobo.

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Source: | Human Rights Watch

Trump’s Art of Unpredictability Starts to Backfire Overseas – Bloomberg

As a businessman, U.S. President Donald Trump saw strength in his willingness to keep multiple balls in the air and change approach as they fell. In international relations, that unpredictability may be proving a liability.

In recent days, Trump’s sudden policy reversals on everything from tariffs to nuclear non-proliferation have prompted complaints from allies and rivals alike. Such flexible negotiating tactics — laid out in Trump’s 1987 book “The Art of the Deal” — have led them to question America’s reliability as a negotiating and, in some cases, security partner.

With defense ministers from around the world convening Friday for the IISS Shangri-La Dialogue security conference in Singapore, questions around U.S. reliability are likely to rival familiar concerns about China’s growing military assertiveness.

“A lot of delegates will be asking the questions they started asking last year about U.S. consistency and its determination to carry on a full defense of the rules-based international order,” said John Chipman, director general of the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies, which organizes the event at the Shangri-La Hotel in Singapore.

Read a QuickTake on how Trump is treating trade as a national security issue

Trump’s moves have put long-standing alliances under strain and created opportunities for China — which has already displaced the U.S. as the top trading partner for most Asian nations — to conduct outreach of its own. Amid U.S. tariff threats in April, China and Japan held their first trade negotiation in eight years.

Fresh in the minds of delegate are Trump’s decisions to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, abandon a trade ceasefire with China, remove exemptions for some allies on steel and aluminum tariffs, and cancel — and then revive — his planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The summit moves blindsided two key Asian allies: South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who had just returned from Washington, and Japanese Prime Minster Shinzo Abe.

“I’m lost” when it comes to Trump, European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker said during a speech in Brussels on Thursday, just before the U.S. confirmed it would impose new steel and aluminum tariffs on the European Union, Canada and Mexico.

Depleted Credibility


Source: Trump’s Art of Unpredictability Starts to Backfire Overseas – Bloomberg

Trump sabre-rattling on North Korea has a flaw: Kim Jong-un has nothing to lose | World news | The Guardian

In the lead-up to North Korea’s latest missile test, Donald Trump had battled to convince Kim Jong-un he was picking a fight with the wrong guy.

The US president pounded Syria with 59 Tomahawk missiles and then ordered a naval “armada” into the waters around the Korean peninsula. He dropped the “mother of all bombs” on eastern Afghanistan and used Twitter to hammer home his message.

But experts say Pyongyang’s latest act has underlined the futility of the billionaire’s efforts to bully Kim Jong-un into abandoning his nuclear ambitions.

“There is a problem with playing the military threat [card] with North Korea because they are inclined to call the bluff,” said John Delury, a North Korea expert from Yonsei University in Seoul. “I’m not saying they tested because of the threats. But bringing a naval strike group doesn’t help if your goal is to put off a test. If anything you are increasing the odds.”

Source: Trump sabre-rattling on North Korea has a flaw: Kim Jong-un has nothing to lose | World news | The Guardian

Trump to cede 13 Million jobs to China over next 4 years, in just one industry.

As Donald betrays our nation to Putin in an act of treason he is also handing the biggest source of new good jobs to china according to this Think Progress article and this report from International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).

As Trump plans to cut clean energy spending-

Beijing’s newest 5-year energy development plan invests a stunning 2.5 trillion yuan ($360 billion) in renewable generation by 2020. Of that, $144 billion will go to solar, about $100 billion to wind, $70 billion to hydropower, and the rest to sources like tidal and geothermal power.

The Chinese National Energy Administration said in a statement Thursday the resulting “employment will be more than 13 million people.”

China is already doing way better than the U.S. in this regard, and President-elect Trump’s commitment to opposing clean energy will not make things any better. As the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) reported last year, China already has over 40 percent of all jobs in renewables, globally, while the U.S. has under 10 percent (see chart

Source: Trump to cede 13 Million jobs to China over next 4 years, in just one industry.

China said it would return a seized U.S. naval drone. Trump told them to ‘keep it.’ – The Washington Post


The Twit on Twitter as Tweeted again, he is a Twerp, a very dangerous Twerp.


The president-elect’s comment could prolong one of the most serious incidents between the U.S. and Chinese militaries in recent memory, potentially complicating ties ahead of his inauguration.

Source: China said it would return a seized U.S. naval drone. Trump told them to ‘keep it.’ – The Washington Post

The grim truth of Chinese factories producing the west’s Christmas toys

The consumers in the West wish for products at a reasonable cost, but give no thought regarding their manufacture, for if they did, they would realise the wages the workers received.

Investigations such as these by NGO China Labor Watch bring this information to the attention of Western consumers together with descriptions relating to the working conditions and the hours worked.

We in the West could do more to stop these practices by boycotting the products, this would show these workers that we do care. However, this could mean instead of improving their conditions the employers could just stop production, which would then mean the workers would lose the pittance that they now receive.

So, alternately, we could make a combined effort to bring these practices to the attention of the ruling authorities in a way that they will have to take action.

Stop Making Sense

Gethin Chamberlain reports for The Observer:

Related image[…] An investigation with the US-based NGO China Labor Watch reveals that toys including Barbie, Thomas the Tank Engine and Hot Wheels were made by staff earning as little as 86p an hour.

Overtime can run to nearly three times the legal limit. In some factories – including one producing Happy Meal toys for McDonald’s from the new DreamWorks movie Trolls – that means some are on 12-hour shifts and have to work with hazardous chemicals.

According to China Labor Watch, the world of toys may be heaven for children, but it is a world of misery for toy factory workers.

The group’s founder and executive director, Li Qiang, said: “We can’t tolerate that children’s dreams are based on workers’ nightmares, and we must fight against the unfair oppression of workers who manufacture toys.”

Undercover investigators infiltrated four factories, and the group shared wage slips…

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Trump’s pullout of TPP opens way for China | Reuters

An Asia-Pacific trade deal stands almost no chance of working now that U.S. President-elect Donald Trump has pulled the plug on it, proponents of the pact said on Tuesday, opening the way for China to assume the leadership mantle on trade.

Japan and Australia expressed their commitment to the pact on Tuesday, hours after Trump vowed to withdraw from the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership on his first day in office, calling the deal “a potential disaster for our country.”

Trump’s declaration appeared to snuff out any hopes for the deal, a signature trade initiative of President Barack Obama, five years in the making and meant to cover 40 percent of the world economy.

Britain is STILL handing out millions of pounds in aid to new superpowers India and China despite pledges to stop the cash flowing : Daily Mail.

I have no particular problem with providing foreign aid provided it is used by the recipient countries or organisations for the purposes for which it is given. Also the current wealth of the countries or organisationsshould also be considered for is it right that aid should be given where the recipients should be capable of providing the funding themselves, it which case the aid should be given to coutries or organisation who can not afford to do so and that they meet the required criteria.

Our Government is quick to ascertain if aid or benefits are rightly given to persons within the UK, all be it by some unsavoury methods, so it is also right that checks should be made in respect of foreign aid.

When benefits are being withdrawn from deserving claimants in the UK is it right that foreign aid would appear to be given without such checks, for it would appear that the Government cares more for the deserving outwith the UK, than those within the UK.