The study shows that banks take only “surface” climate measures

The study shows that banks take only “surface” climate measures

Despite an explosion in green finance, banks have made only superficial changes to their lending practices, with fossil fuel funding going virtually unabated over the past years, according to a new report by Boston Common Asset Management released on Monday (11 November). The report “Banking on a Low-Carbon Future: Finance in a Time of Climate Crisis” highlights the slow pace of change when it comes to greening the financial system. Efforts to green the financial sector have been “largely superficial,” the report says, with banks “failing to change their lending…

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“Fully informed person,” says Trump will not impose tariffs on European cars

“Fully informed person,” says Trump will not impose tariffs on European cars

Outgoing European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker does not believe US President Donald Trump will impose tariffs on imported European cars next week, he told Germany’s Sueddeutsche Zeitung. “Trump is going to make some criticism, but there won’t be any auto tariffs,” Juncker told the Sueddeutsche in pre-released extracts of an interview to run in its Friday edition. “He won’t do it. … You are speaking to a fully informed man.” The US Commerce Department declined to comment. Juncker’s comments were the most definitive sign to date that Washington will hold…

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With Brexit and trade wars, European industry is in economic darkness

With Brexit and trade wars, European industry is in economic darkness

The eurozone’s manufacturing sector contracted for the ninth consecutive month in October, based on the latest Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) calculated by the Markit firm. EURACTIV’s partner La Tribune reports. According to the eurozone’s PMI published by Markit on Monday (4 November), the economic situation has once again darkened on the industrial apparatus. The indicator, which takes into account several factors related to the industrial sector’s health, recovered very slightly in October to 45.9 from 45.7 in September but remained well below 50. With the postponement of Brexit, trade tensions…

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Antwerp Stock exchange shines again

Antwerp Stock exchange shines again

The Old Stock Exchange on the Hofstraat had become too small. To replace it, 1531 saw the construction of the New Stock Exchange. After many trials and tribulations over the centuries, it has now been made ready for the 21st century. Merchants in the 16th century were able to apply new trading practices in this building by architect Domien De Waghemaekere (1460-1542) in the historic heart of Antwerp, which made it a stock exchange ahead of its time. This laid the foundations for the modern shares and options market, the…

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WineWise opens new wine education centre in Brussels

WineWise opens new wine education centre in Brussels

WineWise, the Belgian reference for wine education, is set to open a new location in the Excellis centre in Evere this October, 2019. Since 2001, Winewise has been offering professional and certified wine courses in Antwerp and Ghent and with this new location it targets the hospitality business, wine trade and wine lovers in the Brussels area. WineWise is the recognized provider in Belgium and the Netherlands for all courses of the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET), the international world leader for wine education. “Wine education is globally on…

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Bold views, hard work and big plans for Umut Shayakhmetova

Bold views, hard work and big plans for Umut Shayakhmetova

For the modern Western people it’s hard to imagine the reality of Kazakhstan. Thirty years Nazarbev, once a CPSU-apparatchik and then the leader of independent Kazakh nation is in power. He left the chair of the president only to occupy the throne of the ‘leader of the nation’ and will remain there until the very death. Nazarbev’s shadow is cast on everything that happens in the country. It is tempting to paint the picture in dark tones. But even fierce critics of the regime are acknowledging some of the successful…

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A new trade policy that is ready to counter unfair trade

A new trade policy that is ready to counter unfair trade

Europe is prepared to step up its response to unfair trade practices and push for a renewed WTO, aiming to display a more assertive stance towards its partners in the future. The multilateral and rules-based order upheld by the World Trade Organisation has come under criticism since Donald Trump took over as US President. “We have a crisis, so let’s call it a crisis,” Maria Åsenius, head of cabinet of Commissioner for Trade, Cecilia Malmström, said on Wednesday (16 October), referring to the lack of progress on reforming the WTO….

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Global climate laws threatened by rise in investor-state disputes

Global climate laws threatened by rise in investor-state disputes

A global rise in investor lawsuits against nation-sates is putting climate protection laws under threat, activists warn. Now, the EU is pushing to set up its own investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) system. EURACTIV Germany reports. It is not uncommon for companies to sue governments. According to UN figures, 117 states worldwide are currently being dragged to court for allegedly putting private investments at risk. As a result, governments often prefer watering down their planned environmental laws in order to ward off potential litigation. France, for instance, softened its climate protection…

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New German rules leave 5G telecommunications doors open for Huawei

New German rules leave 5G telecommunications doors open for Huawei

Germany has finalised rules for the build-out of 5G mobile networks that, in a snub to the United States, will not exclude China’s Huawei Technologies. Government officials confirmed that Germany’s so-called security catalogue foresaw an evaluation of technical and other criteria, but that no single vendor would be barred in order to create a level playing field for equipment vendors. “We are not taking a pre-emptive decision to ban any actor, or any company,” German government spokesman Steffen Seibert told a news conference in Berlin on Monday. The United States…

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Will Germany block the EIB’s plans to phase out natural gas?

Will Germany block the EIB’s plans to phase out natural gas?

The European Investment Bank wants to purge its loan books of fossil fuels, including natural gas, by 2020. Although the Bank’s final decision is expected to be delivered on 15 October, resistance, especially from Germany, is brewing. Germany’s backslide on climate ambition, fully exposed by its recent tweaking of a landmark climate package, is also starting to affect EIB policy. The EU lender is composed of delegates of all member states, who will vote on 15 October on an update to the bank’s energy lending policy, the first draft of…

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