Thursday, 15 February 2018 12:18

Digest of interesting events of January

bolgarija predsedatelBulgaria began in January its six-month chairmanship in the Council of the European Union, which will last until June 30

The ceremony dedicated to this event was held at the Ivan Vazov People's Theater in Sofia.

Bulgaria as chairman of the EU Council must succeed in advancing the European future of the Balkans.


Over the next six months, Sofia will host more than 300 official events, including more than 30 with the participation of political leaders of European countries, and more than 25,000 official guests will visit the country.

Priority for the Bulgarian Chairmanship will be the issues of regional development of the EU member states, the integration of the Western Balkans into the European community, the formation of a common European defense, and a common digital market.

NATONorth Atlantic Treaty Organization adopted its official anthem, which has no words

The hymn is written for 20 musical instruments.

NATO had a hymn before. Since 1989, the composition connected with the block was sounded by the conductor of the Luxembourg military orchestra, captain Andre Reichling. But it was not officially approved.


Since January 13, 2018 in the UK there are new banking rules, called Open Banking. They force large banks to implement the API-interfaces, which standardizes secure access to customer data with their consent.

Open bankingNine of the largest banks in the UK, serving the majority of the population can no longer block the financial transactions of third-party companies. In fact, this means allowing payments through Facebook Messenger, Google Wallet, and their analogues.

The new rules give full freedom for the development of payment Facebook and the Google products, which is not the first year, want to get into banking without actually becoming banks.


Previously, they needed to negotiate directly with each of the banks in order to access the data of the user account. This made it difficult for "quick payments" through applications that are widely used in the US and China.


World Economic Forum 2018

Davos

WEF has long gone beyond purely economic themes.

Women's rights
In 2018 one of the main topics of the forum were - the protection of women's rights. For the first time in the history of the forum, all co-chairmen were women.

Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau urged business leaders to hire and promote women on the career ladder, pay equal salaries, improve parental leave. Bollywood actor and director Shahruh Khan spoke about the problems of women in India.

Rights of migrants
Angela Merkel called for cooperation, not isolation, in dealing with migration problems.

Worldwide, approximately 65 million people were displaced, 22 of whom were refugees and only 1% of displaced persons in the world were resettled in developed countries. The main burden is taken by developing countries. For example, a quarter of Lebanon's population is refugees, mainly from Syria.

In 2018, new humanitarian crises may appear, which means that there can be even more refugees.

President of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Peter Maurer designated such fragile regions in this issue: the Southern Philippines, Myanmar, Afghanistan, the Middle East and a significant part of Africa.

Ecology
President of the United States Donald Trump called environmental regulation tax, which outraged many. From his words, the refusal of the environmental rules introduced earlier, strengthened the business.

India is going for a serious move to "green" forms of energy. By 2022, India plans to produce 175 gigawatts from alternative sources. Over the past three years, India has already achieved a production volume of 60 gigawatts.

The crisis of globalization
Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi called the negative attitude to globalization one of the most significant problems of civilization. He believes that the countries are isolate from each other. German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and French President Emanuel Macron noted the same trend.

In the sphere of trade, more and more protectionism, which alleviates the efforts of the WTO and the successes of globalization. Trade agreements have reached an impasse, many countries have faced a reduction in cross-border investment, the global supply chain has been interrupted. As a result, barriers appeared that adversely affect people in developing countries.

Crypto currency
Nobel Laureate 2013 in the field of economics Robert Schiller admitted that he was impressed by the technology on which the crypto currency bitcoin was built. He described Bitcoin as an "interesting experiment," but not the future of the global financial system. The economist drew attention to the use of a special unit in Chile Unidad de Fomento exchange, which varies depending on the level of inflation and is used to index payments since 1967.

The French leader Emmanuel Macron proposed to expand the IMF's powers to scrutinize cryptocurrency. Business is more loyal to crypto-currencies than politicians and economists. General partner and co-founder of Index Ventures SA Neil Rimer called crypto currency one of the most audacious, generous and profound inventions he observed in his career.

Poland stop tradeIn Poland, a ban on trading on Sunday

President of Poland Andrzej Duda signed at the end of January, the law on the prohibition of trade on Sundays. The upper house of parliament - the Senate - passed the law on January 11, and the lower chamber - the Sejm - adopted it in November last year.

The adopted law aims to allow trade workers spend Sunday with their families.


According to the law, from March 1, 2018, in each month, stores will only work on two Sundays - the first and last week of the month, in 2019 - three, by 2020 all trade on Sundays in Poland will be banned. In addition, the restriction of trade on the eve of Christmas and on Saturday before Easter until 14:00.

Exceptions may be made for online shops, pharmacies, shops, gas stations and retail outlets at the bakeries, where products are sold on the schedule, as well as a family business. Also, work on Sundays can flower and pastry shops.

The law also provides for a penalty for violation of the ban, which will be from 1,000 to 100,000 PLN, and in case of permanent violations of the ban - imprisonment!

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