SteveWire – SCW NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “Trade Fight Escalates as China Hits U.S. With Higher Tariffs Washington lays out nearly $300 billion of imports that would face fresh 25% levies.” – Wall Street Journal/ Chao Deng, Josh Zumbrun, Vivian Salama 5.13.19

China Map, adapted from image at cdc.gov

“The U.S.-China trade dispute escalated sharply Monday, as Beijing retaliated against higher U.S. tariffs with plans to increase levies on $60 billion in U.S. imports and Washington laid out nearly $300 billion of new Chinese imports that would face 25% levies as early as this summer. The higher tariffs are expected to raise costs for both consumers and businesses and act as a brake on economic growth in both countries. Neither side appeared ready to compromise ….”

SCW RUSSIAWIRE: “Russia clashes with Western oil buyers over new deals as sanctions loom” – Reuters

File Photo of Oil Wells with Mountains in Background, adapted from image at blm.gov by Steven C. Welsh www.stevencwelsh.info :: www.stevencwelsh.com

“Russian energy majors are putting pressure on Western oil buyers to use euros instead of dollars for payments and introducing penalty clauses in contracts as Moscow seeks protection against possible new U.S. sanctions. … Western oil majors and trading houses have clashed with Russia’s third and fourth biggest producers, Gazprom Neft and Surgutneftegaz, over 2019 oil sales contract terms during unusually tough annual renegotiation in recent weeks. … mirror[ing] a similar stand-off between Western buyers and Russia’s top oil producer, Rosneft. * * *  Russia has been under U.S. and EU sanctions since 2014 when it invaded Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula. The sanctions have been repeatedly widened to include new companies and sectors, making it tough for Russian oil firms to borrow money abroad, raise new capital or develop Arctic and unconventional deposits. * * * … Russia supplies over 10 percent of global oil ….”

Click here for: “Russia clashes with Western oil buyers over new deals as sanctions loom” – Reuters







 

 

NEWSWATCH: “Uber, Yandex combine ridesharing and UberEATS in Russian markets in a $3.72B JV” – TechCrunch

Map of Former Soviet Union, CIS, Western Portion, adapted from image at cia.gov

“As Uber continues to work through a huge amount of internal management turmoil, the company is also consolidating and rationalising more of its international business. Today, the company announced that it will be combining its rides-on-demand business and UberEATS, its food ordering and delivery business, in Russia and neighboring markets with Yandex.Taxi, the ridesharing business built up by the Russian search giant over several years and the current leader in the market, in what will be a separate, joint venture valued at $3.72 billion.

The deal — which will cover operations in Russia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus and Georgia — is expected to close in Q4 of this year and has already been approved by the boards of both companies. It’s a substantial operation. Currently it covers 35 million trips each month across 127 cities, with the bulk of those coming from the Yandex.Taxi part of the JV; Uber was only in 21 cities. …”

Click here for: “Uber, Yandex combine ridesharing and UberEATS in Russian markets in a $3.72B JV” – TechCrunch/ Ingrid Lunden





NEWSWATCH: “Russia squares up to Boeing, Airbus with maiden jet flight” – Reuters

Map of Russia with Russian Flag

“#Russia carried out the maiden flight of its new MS-21 medium-range passenger plane … its first post-Soviet foray into production of a mainline commercial aircraft which it hopes will rival those of its Western competitors. … manufacturer Irkut Corporation … and … state-controlled parent company United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) … [announced] a 30-minute flight at … 1,000 meters … [and] 300 km an hour. Squeezed by Western #sanctions over its role in the #Ukraine crisis, Russia is trying to rejuvenate domestic industrial production to make the country less dependant on foreign firms. …”

Click here for “Russia squares up to Boeing, Airbus with maiden jet flight” – Reuters 







NEWSLINK: “In Tense Encounter, #Merkel Tells #Putin #Sanctions Must Remain” – Bloomberg

EU Map

“German Chancellor Angela #Merkel told President Vladimir #Putin that #EU #sanctions will have to remain on #Russia as the two leaders clashed over #Ukraine, human rights and election meddling at a chilly encounter in the Black Sea city of Sochi.”

NEWSLINK: “#EU stands firms on #Crimea #sanctions against #Russia” – Deutsche Welle

Map of Ukraine and Environs, Including Russia

“… The #EuropeanUnion’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, told a news conference in the #Russian capital on Monday that the #EU could not pretend that #Moscow had not annexed #Ukraine’s #Crimea in 2014, and that the bloc’s sanctions over the issue would not be lifted. She insisted, however, that cooperation between the two sides was not “frozen,” but rather hampered by differences over issues such as #Ukraine and #Syria. Mogherini was speaking alongside Russian Foreign Minister Sergey #Lavrov on her first official visit to Moscow in her current role as the EU’s top diplomat. …”

NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “Why foreign companies are shutting shop in #China” – CNBC

China Map

“U.S.-based Seagate, the world’s biggest maker of hard disk drives, closed its factory in Suzhou near Shanghai last month with the loss of 2,000 jobs, in a move that has rekindled fears that #China is becoming increasingly hostile towards foreign firms operating in the country. … Seagate joined a spate of foreign companies to shutter operations in China in recent years, for various reasons, but most have attributed the country’s high tax regime, rising labor costs and fierce competition from domestic companies. Panasonic, for instance, stopped all its manufacturing of televisions in the country in 2015 after 37 years of operating in China. …”

Click here for: “Why foreign companies are shutting shop in China” – CNBC/South China Morning Post







NEWSWATCH: “List of #Trump’s executive orders” – Fox News

White House file photo

“… An order that directs federal agencies to ease the ‘regulatory burdens’ of ObamaCare. … ‘… on any State or a cost, fee, tax, penalty, or regulatory burden on individuals, families, healthcare providers, health insurers, patients, recipients of healthcare services, purchasers of health insurance, or makers of medical devices, products, or medications.’ * * * An order imposing a hiring freeze for some federal government workers …. This excludes the military, as Trump noted at the signing. * * *  a notice that the U.S. will begin withdrawing from the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal. * * *  … the … ‘Mexico City Policy’ … ban on federal funds to international groups that perform abortions or lobby to legalize or promote abortion. …”



Click here for “List of Trump’s executive orders” – Fox News





WHITE HOUSE TEXT: Presidential Memorandum Regarding Withdrawal of the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations and Agreement

White House file photo

MEMORANDUM FOR THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE

SUBJECT: Withdrawal of the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations and Agreement

It is the policy of my Administration to represent the American people and their financial well-being in all negotations, particularly the American worker, and to create fair and economically beneficial trade deals that serve their interests. Additionally, in order to ensure these outcomes, it is the intention of my Administration to deal directly with individual countries on a one-on-one (or bilateral) basis in negotiating future trade deals. Trade with other nations is, and always will be, of paramount importance to my Administration and to me, as President of the United States.

Based on these principles, and by the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby direct you to withdraw the United States as a signatory to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), to permanently withdraw the United States from TPP negotiations, and to begin pursuing, wherever possible, bilateral trade negotiations to promote American industry, protect American workers, and raise American wages.

You are directed to provide written notification to the Parties and to the Depository of the TPP, as appropriate, that the United States withdraws as a signatory of the TPP and withdraws from the TPP negotiating process.

You are authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.

DONALD J. TRUMP

[also appeared at whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/01/23/presidential-memorandum-regarding-withdrawal-united-states-trans-pacific]





[PDF] NEWSLINK: “International Trade and Finance: Overview and Issues for the 115th Congress” – Congressional Research Service/FAS

U.S. Capitol file photo

“During the 2016 presidential election campaign, U.S. trade policy and trade agreements received significant attention, particularly regarding the impact of trade agreements on the U.S. economy and workers. Among the more potentially prominent international trade and finance issues the 115th Congress may consider are …”

IMF: Russia still facing risk from low oil prices Country remains in recession for 2016, but returns to slow growth by next year.

Kremlin and Saint Basil's At Night

Russia’s economy returns to modest growth next year, but faces medium-term risks from volatility in crude oil prices, the International Monetary Fund said.

An IMF assessment found the Russian economy contracted by 3.7 percent last year because of the collapse in crude oil prices. The economy remains in recession this year before growth resumes at an estimated 1 percent next year. * * * [OPEC] said it expected Russian oil supplies would increase slightly to average almost 11 million barrels per day in 2016, a level that’s higher by 10,000 bpd from the previous estimate. More narrowly, however, second quarter output was 40,000 bpd lower than the first quarter average.

Click here for UPI: “IMF: Russia still facing risk from low oil prices; Country remains in recession for 2016, but returns to slow growth by next year”

NEWSWATCH: “Oil Falls Amid Warnings of Retreat to $40 on Rocky Rebalance” – Bloomberg

Oil Rig file photo

Oil fell amid forecasts prices may slide toward $40 a barrel as consumption falters and halted supplies return.

Futures fell 0.6 percent in New York. Analysts from BNP Paribas SA to JBC Energy GmbH warned prices may sink towards $40 a barrel amid a global glut of supply and weakening demand. Prices on Friday pared earlier losses of as much as 1.4 percent after data from China showed its economy is stabilizing and the country processed a record amount of crude.

* * *

Oil has traded between about $44 and $52 a barrel since early June after almost doubling from a 12-year low in February amid a spate of supply disruptions and falling U.S. output. Prices have been whipsawed this week, pulled down by U.S. fuel data that signaled faltering demand and rallying when global equity markets advance and a weakening dollar bolstered commodities.

Click here for Bloomberg: “Oil Falls Amid Warnings of Retreat to $40 on Rocky Rebalance”