Sunday, January 31, 2010

Democrats and Republicans Meeting in Davos Agree Financial Regulation is Imperative

  • Expect tough financial regulation from the Obama Administration
  • Financial regulation will be coordinated to avoid regulatory arbitrage
  • Energy package to include nuclear to meet the challenges of climate change

Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 30 January 2010 − Expect “tough regulation” from the Obama Administration on financial services this spring, as well as an energy package. Addressing participants in a session on “The US Legislative Agenda: A Global Perspective” at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2010, US congressmen and senators confirmed that despite bipartisan differences, there is agreement that financial regulation is imperative.

“There is a degree of bipartisanship, but I don’t think it will make a difference,” said Barney Frank, US Congressman from Massachusetts (Democrat), 4th District; Chairman, Financial Services Committee. “I expect the President to be signing a financial reform package this spring.” Frank noted that the proposed regulatory reform would be done in a coordinated manner. “There will be tough regulation but it will be sufficiently coordinated so that it will not create regulatory arbitrage,” he added.

Susan M. Collins, US Senator from Maine (Republican), acknowledged the “complete failure of regulation” and suggested that a board of regulators or a council should be in place, responsible for identifying systemic risk and black holes. “No matter how skilled (regulators) are, there will be a new risk product or process that will emerge. We need a regulatory system that is flexible enough, for example, to identify derivatives.” Collins pointed out that both Democrats and Republicans agree that the system failed and that regulatory reform is needed. “Whether they can come together, I hope so,” she said.

The challenge of climate change presents an opportunity for the US to break away from foreign energy dependence and to create jobs, according to Lindsey O. Graham, US Senator from South Carolina (Republican). “In his State of the Union Address, President Obama talked about nuclear power, offshore drilling and clean air. That is where America is at. You can disagree with me about global warming, but why don’t you join me to provide the next generation of Americans with cleaner air and purer water and in the process, create jobs?” Graham noted that the President’s comments signalled “significant change”, making it much more likely that a “bill could be put together.”

Brian Baird, US Congressman from Washington (Democrat), 3rd District, said it was “unlikely” that a cap-and-trade bill could be pushed through Congress. “But that doesn’t mean we cannot be an active player in reducing CO2,” he said. “It is important that we do not treat cap and trade as the sine qua non. There are other non-tax ways to achieve this.”

Scott Brown’s victory in Massachusetts could mean a more conciliatory attitude from both Republicans and Democrats. Edward J. Markey, US Congressman from Massachusetts (Democrat), 7th District; Chairman, Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, pointed out that in energy and climate issues, there was never a day when it was a question of 60 votes. “We all realize we have to work in a bipartisan fashion.”

Saturday, January 30, 2010

IMF Head Urges Caution on Winding Down Economic Stimulus

  • Leaders must balance the desire to keep a list on public debt against the dangers of a double dip recession, said Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn of the International Monetary Fund (IMF)
  • Christine Lagarde, Minister of Economy, Industry and Employment of France says exit timing is critical
  • For all information about the Annual Meeting, visit

Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 30 January 2010 − Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington DC, warned the world’s economic leaders to remain cautious as they examine exit strategies from the various stimulus packages they have implemented in response to the global economic crisis.

“If we exit too late, public debt will be higher,” he said at a panel on the Global Economic Outlook at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting here today. “But if we exit too early, there is the risk of a double-dip recession. In that case, I don’t know what we can do because we have used all of the tools. The probability is low, but the risk is high.” He also noted that “Growth is better than expected, but still fragile. In large part, it is still supported by public funding.”

Another problem highlighted by the IMF chief is the uneven pace at which the recovery is taking place around the world, with Asia and some other emerging market countries leading the way, and the United States and Europe lagging behind.

Christine Lagarde, Minister of Economy, Industry and Employment of France, and Member of the Foundation Board of the World Economic Forum, agreed that the timing of the exit “is absolutely critical.” She added that leaders will also have to carefully manage the frustration of their citizens during this process.

“What we see in the United States and some other economies,” said Lawrence H. Summers, Director of the US National Economic Council, “is a statistical recovery and a human recession. The policies to contain the economic collapse have been successful. In my judgement, we will continue to grow at a moderate rate for the next several quarters. But what is disturbing is the high unemployment – which is cyclical, but also structural.” In the US currently, one man in five between the ages of 25 and 54 is unemployed. Even after the recovery, according to projections, one in seven or one in eight will remain jobless.

Near the end of the session, Strauss-Kahn briefly sketched out the IMF’s plans for a US$ 100 billion Green Fund to promote low-carbon economic growth. “The new growth model will be low carbon,” he said. Efforts to address climate change cannot remain stalled “because we cannot meet the financing needs.”

Summers Says Fourth Quarter US GDP Report Shows Obama Economic Policies Working

  • US President Obama’s top economic adviser cites the fourth quarter GDP growth rate – estimated at 5.7% – as evidence that Obama’s policies have pulled the US economy back from the brink of a second Great Depression, but says more needs to be done to fight unemployment
  • Summers also defends proposed “Volcker rule”, which would prevent banks that have access to government deposit insurance and the Federal Reserve’s discount window from owning hedge funds or engaging in strictly proprietary trading activities
  • Summers criticizes financial industry for lobbying against bank fees that would reimburse US Treasury for cost of TARP bailout, but denies administration wants to “pick a fight” with Wall Street
  • Status of US dollar as global reserve currency will be determined by the markets and foreign Central Banks, Summers says. But, he predicts the dollar will play “central role for many years to come”

Davos-Klosters Switzerland, 29 January 2010 − In a wide-ranging interview with US TV talk show host Charlie Rose, Larry Summers, Director of the US National Economic Council, vigorously defended the Obama administration’s economic policies and regulatory proposals.

Summers argued that the latest US GDP report, which shows the economy expanded at a 5.7% rate in the fourth quarter, demonstrates that the massive fiscal and monetary stimulus measures proposed or endorsed by the administration have “pulled the [US] economy back from the brink of a depression, and created a basis for economic growth.” However, Summers also stressed that additional measures – such as President Obama’s proposed payroll tax credit – are needed to bring down the double-digit US unemployment rate and boost middle-class incomes.

The GDP report “certainly doesn’t suggest we are in any position to pop champagne corks,” Summers said. “It’s going to take a lot more effort in the months, quarters and years ahead.” Summers conceded that much of the fourth quarter growth in the US (nearly 60%, according to Commerce Department results) was due to inventory restocking rather than a substantial pickup in private demand, which remains weak. He said President Obama will press the US Congress to enact the job creation measures he outlined in his State of the Union address earlier this week.

The interview included an extensive discussion of the administration’s proposed reforms in financial regulation, which Summers said would increase capital standards, create a new system for handling the failure of non-bank lenders, and limit the ability of commercial banks (which benefit from federal deposit insurance and access to the Fed’s discount window) to own hedge funds and certain other alternative investment vehicles, or engaging in purely speculative proprietary trading.

The latter proposal, commonly known as the “Volcker rule” after its chief advocate, former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker, was added only recently to the administration’s legislative wish list. Summers denied that this reflected any internal conflict within the administration over the proposal. “As any reform process moves along, details are always filled in, and that’s what’s happening here,” he said.

Summers rebutted suggestions that the administration is seeking a confrontation with Wall Street as a way to shore up its popular support, but criticized the financial industry for opposing proposed bank fees that would reimburse the US Treasury for the cost of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) – the US$ 700 billion package of loan guarantees and bank capital injections approved by Congress in 2008.

Although the financial industry argues that higher fees would curb lending, Summers noted that the proposed fees would equal only a small fraction of what the banks are paying out in executive bonuses this year. “I don’t understand how you can logically maintain that paying out large bonuses has zero effect on lending … and then maintain that a [relatively small] financial fee would somehow deprive the economy of a trillion dollars in lending.”

Asked to comment on French President Sarkozy’s recent call for an alternative global reserve currency, Summers said any change in the US dollar’s role would be brought about by market forces – including decisions made by foreign governments and Central Banks with sizable foreign exchange holdings. “I believe the dollar is going to have a very central role in the international financial system for a very long time to come,” he said.
Quick Estimates of National Income, consumption expenditure, saving and capital formation, 2008-09

The Central Statistical Organisation (CSO), Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation has released the Quick estimates of national income, consumption expenditure, saving and capital formation for the financial year 2008-09. Alongwith the Quick Estimates, the CSO is also introducing the new series of national accounts statistics with base year 2004-05, in place of the previous series with base year 1999-2000. A brief note on the new series of national accounts is placed at Annex. A detailed brochure containing the changes made in the new series at sectoral level will be released by 5th March, 2010 through the Ministry’s website,

The salient features of the estimates, which are based on latest available information, are indicated below:


Gross domestic product (GDP) at factor cost at constant (2004-05) prices in 2008-09 is estimated at Rs. 41,54,973 crore as against Rs. 38,93,457 crore in 2007-08 registering a growth of 6.7 per cent during the year as against the growth rate of 9.2 per cent during the previous year. At current prices, GDP in 2008-09 is estimated at Rs. 52,28,650 crore as against Rs. 45,40,987 crore in 2007-08, showing an increase of 15.1 per cent during the year.

At constant (2004-05) prices the gross national income at factor cost in 2008-09 is estimated at Rs 41,38,174 crore as against Rs. 38,76,386 crore in 2007-08 showing a rise of 6.8 per cent during the year. At current prices, the gross national income in 2008-09 is estimated at Rs. 52,07,534 crore as compared to Rs 45,21,099 crore in 2007-08, showing a rise of 15.2 per cent during the year.

The growth rate of 6.7 per cent in the GDP during 2008-09 has been achieved due to high growth in construction (5.9%), trade, hotels & restaurants (5.3%), transport, storage and communication (11.6%), financing, insurance, real estate & business services (10.1%), and community, social and personal services (13.9%).


The per capita income (per capita net national income at factor cost) in real terms, i.e. at 2004-05 prices, is estimated at Rs. 31,821 for 2008-09 as against Rs. 30,316 in 2007-08, registering an increase of 5.0 per cent during the year. The per capita income at current prices is estimated at Rs. 40,141 in 2008-09 as against Rs. 35,430 for the previous year depicting a growth of 13.3 per cent.


In order to derive the GDP at market prices, the GDP at factor cost is adjusted by adding indirect taxes net of subsidies. As various components of expenditure on gross domestic product, namely, consumption expenditure and capital formation, are normally measured at market prices, the discussion in the following paragraphs is in terms of market prices only.


Private Final Consumption Expenditure (PFCE) in the domestic market at current prices is estimated at Rs. 32,26,826 crore in 2008-09 as against Rs. 28,25,356 crore in 2007-08. At constant (2004-05) prices, the PFCE is estimated at Rs. 26,51,786 crore in 2008-09 as against Rs. 24,83,357 crore in 2007-08. In terms of GDP at market prices, the rates of PFCE at current and constant (2004-05) prices during 2008-09 are estimated at 57.9 per cent and 59.4 per cent, respectively, as against the corresponding rates of 57.1 per cent and 58.5 per cent, respectively in 2007-08.

The per capita PFCE in the domestic market in 2008-09 is estimated to be Rs. 27,962 at current prices and Rs. 22,979 at constant (2004-05) prices as against Rs. 24,827 and Rs. 21,822 respectively in 2007-08.


Gross domestic saving (GDS) at current prices in 2008-09 is estimated at Rs. 18,11,585 crore as against Rs. 18,01,469 crore in 2007-08, constituting 32.5 per cent of GDP at market prices as against 36.4 per cent in the previous year. The fall in the rate of GDS has mainly been due to the fall in the rates of savings of public sector (from 5.0 per cent in 2007-08 to 1.4 per cent in 2008-09) and private corporate sector (from 8.7 per cent in 2007-08 to 8.4 per cent in 2008-09). In respect of household sector, the rate of saving has remained at the same level of 22.6 per cent in 2007-08 and 2008-09. In absolute terms, while the saving of the public sector has decreased from Rs. 2,49,660 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 79,997 crore in 2008-09, the saving of private corporate sector has gone up from Rs. 4,31,588 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 4,70,256 crore in 2008-09 and that of household sector has gone up from Rs. 11,20,221 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 12,61,332 crore in 2008-09.


Gross Domestic Capital Formation at current prices has increased from Rs. 18,65,899 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 19,44,328 crore in 2008-09 and at constant (2004-05) prices, it decreased from Rs. 16,22,226 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 15,57,757 crore in 2008-09. The rate of gross capital formation at current prices is 34.9 per cent in 2008-09 as against 37.7 per cent in 2007-08. The rate of gross capital formation at constant (2004-05) prices is 34.9 per cent in 2008-09 as against 38.2 per cent in 2007-08.

Within the gross capital formation at current prices, the gross fixed capital formation amounted to Rs. 18,38,499 crore in 2008-09 as against Rs. 16,30,513 crore in 2007-08. At current prices, the gross fixed capital formation of the public sector has increased from Rs. 4,00,681 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 4,78,230 crore in 2008-09, that of private corporate sector from Rs.6,71,234 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 6,81,334 crore in 2008-09, and the household sector from Rs. 5,58,599 crore in 2007-08 to Rs. 6,78,935 crore in 2008-09.

The change in stocks of inventories, measured as additions to stocks decreased at current prices, from Rs. 1,75,154 crore in 2007-08 to Rs 74,023 crore in 2008-09. The decrease is observed due to decrease in private corporate and household sectors. In private corporate sector the change in stocks has decreased from Rs. 1,24,761 crore to Rs. 27,043 crore and in household sector from Rs. 8,897 crore to Rs. 969 crore.

The estimates of National Product, Consumption Expenditure, Saving and Capital Formation at aggregate and per capita levels for the years 2004-05 to 2008-09 are presented in Statement 1 and the detailed estimates at industry/item level in Statements 2 to 10.




1. For examining the performance of the economy in real terms through the macro economic aggregates like Gross Domestic Product (GDP), national income, consumption expenditure, capital formation etc., estimates of these aggregates are prepared at the prices of selected year known as base year. The estimates at the prevailing prices of the current year are termed as “at current prices”, while those prepared at base year prices are termed “at constant prices”. The comparison of the estimates at constant prices, which means “in real terms”, over the years gives the measure of real growth. The base year of the national accounts are changed periodically to take into account the structural changes which take place in the economy and to depict a true picture of the economy through macro aggregates like GDP, consumption expenditure, capital formation etc.

2. The first official estimates of national income were prepared by the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO) with base year 1948‑49 for the estimates at constant prices. These estimates at constant (1948‑49) prices alongwith the corresponding estimates at current prices and the accounts of the Public Authorities were published in the publication, "Estimates of National Income" in 1956. With the gradual improvement in the availability of basic data over the years, a comprehensive review of methodology for national accounts statistics has constantly been undertaken with a view to updating the data base and shifting the base year to a more recent year. As a result, base years of the National Accounts Statistics series have been shifted from 1948-49 to 1960-61 in August 1967, from 1960-61 to 1970-71 in January 1978, from 1970-71 to 1980-81 in February 1988, from 1980-81 to 1993-94 in February 1999 and from 1993-94 to 1999-2000 in January 2006 and from 1999-2000 to 2004-05 on 29th January 2010.

3. In the past, National Accounts Statistics were revised decennially changing the base to a year, which ends with 1. It was primarily because in the base year estimates, the information on work force has played an important role and work force estimates were obtained from the Population Census conducted decennially in the years ending with 1. This practice continued upto the series with base year 1980-81. Since then, the CSO started using the work force estimates from the results of Quinquennial Employment and Unemployment Surveys of National Sample Survey Organisation (NSSO), which are conducted once in every five years, and consequently started revising the base years of national accounts statistics once in every five years, coinciding with the years for which the NSSO conducts the Quinquennial Employment and Unemployment Surveys.

4. In continuation with this practice, the new series of national accounts is being released now with base year 2004-05 on 29th January, 2010 using the work force data from the results of NSS 61st round (2004-05) on Employment and Unemployment Survey.

5. The new series, besides the shifting of the base year from 1999-2000 to 2004-2005, incorporates improvements in terms of coverage and to the extent possible, the recommendations of the System of National Accounts (SNA), 1993 and 2008 of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and the European Union.

6. The new series incorporates the latest available results of long-term surveys, such as the results of (i) NSS 61st round (2004-05) on employment and unemployment and consumer expenditure, (ii) NSS 62nd round (2005-06) on unorganized manufacturing, (iii) NSS 63rd round (2006-07) on services sectors, (iv) All India Livestock Census, 2003, (v) NSS 59th round (2002-03) on All India Debt and Investment Survey, (vi) Population Census, 2001, and (vii) Fourth All India Census of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, 2006-07. Further, the results of various studies undertaken by the CSO through the Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Environment and Forestry and State Governments and also the CSO’s input output transactions tables and the Ministry of Agriculture’s Cost of Cultivation Studies have been used in the new series for updating the rates and ratios used to estimate the production/consumption of fodder, market charges paid by the farmers, yield rates of meat, meat products and meat by products for different categories of animals, input rates for agriculture and forestry and the trade and transport margins.

7. The improvements in terms of coverage have been mainly the inclusion of production of industrial wood from trees outside forests (TOF), fodder from forest sources and output of wind power generation in the GDP estimates.

8. The important procedural changes made in the new series are the incorporation of data on (i) area and production of crops as finalized by the States/UTs for the final estimates of GDP; (ii) consumption of fertilizers in agriculture, as provided by the Fertilizer Association of India in lieu of data on dispatches of fertilisers being used at present from the same source in the estimation of inputs of agriculture sector; (iii) results of the CSO’s Annual Survey of Industries (ASI) in place of the index of industrial production (IIP) for estimating the GDP of registered manufacturing; (iv) labour input on the basis of work-place in place of the present practice of using the labour input data on the basis of location in respect of estimation of GDP of unorganised manufacturing and services; and (v) labour input for the organised sector from the NSS Employment and Unemployment Surveys in place of the present source, namely, the Annual Employment Market Intelligence (EMI) of the Directorate General of Employment and Training (DGET), Ministry of Labour.

9. Other procedural changes in the new series include (i) treating R&D expenditures in public sector as capital expenditures in line with the recommendations of 2008 SNA; (ii) adopting the declining balance (of life of assets) method for estimating the consumption of fixed capital and capital stock; (iii) adopting the user cost approach for estimating the services of owner occupied dwellings in rural areas as against the present practice of imputing these services on the basis of rent per dwelling; (iv) estimating the output of communication in nominal terms on the basis of the data available on average revenue per user (ARPU); and (v) improvements in the estimation of output, consumption expenditure, saving and capital formation of autonomous government bodies and local bodies by analysing their accounts on a sample basis.

Changes in the level of GDP in the new series

10. Normally, when the base year of national accounts statistics is changed, there is some change in the levels of GDP estimates. This happens due to widening the coverage and inclusion of long-term survey results.

11. The statement below illustrates the changes in the levels of GDP due to the introduction of the new series of national accounts in India. The effect of the change in base year and the changes made in the new series ranges from 3.1 in 2004-05 to 6.0 per cent in 2008-09.

12. There are no major changes in the overall growth rates of GDP at constant (2004-05) prices with the change in the base year, although there are changes in growth rates at sectoral level. The only change is in the year 2007-08, which is mainly on account of higher growth in the registered manufacturing sector following the availability of results of ASI, whereas the earlier estimates were based on IIP

Friday, January 29, 2010

Appointments to the BHP Billiton Board

29 January 2010

Number 06/10

The BHP Billiton Board today announced that Mr Paul Anderson and Dr Gail de Planque will retire from the Board on 31 January 2010 and Mr Malcolm Broomhead and Ms Carolyn Hewson will be appointed as Non-executive Directors from 31 March 2010. Mr Anderson has accepted an invitation to become a director of BP plc and Dr de Planque will retire due to her current need for continuous treatment for Lyme disease.

BHP Billiton Chairman, Mr Don Argus, said both Mr Anderson and Dr de Planque had made extremely valuable contributions to the company and he wished them both good health and success in their future endeavours.

"I understand Paul's desire to take up one of his last board appointments in the industry where he spent much of his working life. I also know that with a high performance Board like ours, directors are always going to be highly sought after. We are also very sorry to lose Gail from the Board although we respect her wish to retire to seek medical treatment in the United States. Gail's broad experience in science and nuclear energy has been invaluable and we wish her a speedy return to good health.

"On behalf of the Board I wish both Paul and Gail all the best and, whilst we are saddened to see them leave, they do so with the good will and gratitude of the Board." Mr Argus said.

Mr Malcolm Broomhead is currently the Chairman of an Australian infrastructure company, Asciano Limited and was previously Chief Executive Officer of Orica Limited and North Limited. Mr Broomhead also held various roles with Energy Resources Australia, Peko Wallsend and MIM Holdings Limited. He is also a Non-executive Director of Coates Group Holdings Pty Ltd.

Ms Carolyn Hewson is a former investment banker with Schroders Australia Limited and is a Non-executive Director of Westpac Banking Corporation, BT Investment Management Limited and Stockland Corporation Limited. Ms Hewson has previously been a Non-executive Director of AGL, AMP and CSR Limited.

Mr Argus said that both appointments would be important additions to the BHP Billiton Board, bringing with them a wealth of experience in the international mining, energy and financial services industries.

"Malcolm has extensive experience in running industrial and mining companies with a global footprint and his experience in the sector will make a very attractive addition to our Board. He has broad global experience in project development in many of the countries in which we operate. His depth of senior management experience and knowledge of the industry will be an asset to the company.

"Carolyn has experience across a range of diversified industries with deep experience as a Non-executive Director. In particular, she has 25 years experience in the financial sector with extensive financial markets, risk management and investment management expertise.

"Both Malcolm and Carolyn will be excellent additions to our Board and we are very pleased that they have agreed to join us."

Chairman elect Jac Nasser said, "The Group's established process of continually reviewing the mix of skills and competencies of directors will continue to ensure that the Board is made up of members best able to promote shareholder interests and effectively govern the Group."

The appointment of Mr Broomhead and Ms Hewson will bring the number of BHP Billiton directors to 12.
Statement on 65th Anniversary of Liberation of Auschwitz
(World must resist injustice and intolerance in whatever forms they take)  
(begin transcript)
United States Mission to the OSCE
Statement on the
Sixty-fifth Anniversary of the
Liberation of Auschwitz
As delivered by Political Counselor Casey Christensen
to the Permanent Council, Vienna
January 28, 2010
Sixty-five years ago yesterday Soviet troops liberated the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz. Over the following few months America and our allies liberated concentration camps at Buchenwald, Dachau, and Treblinka among others, exposing the horrific, unimaginable, and even unspeakable crimes of the Nazi regime.
Millions of people were killed because of their religion. Many were killed because of their race, their sexual orientation, or their politics. Two-thirds of the Jews living in Europe were murdered in the cruelest and most humiliating ways imaginable. The tools of science and industry were perverted to create factories of death.
As the camps were liberated, American and allied commanders made sure the world would have a vivid understanding of the horrors perpetrated. General Eisenhower ordered the residents from nearby towns to tour the camps. He brought Congressmen and journalists to bear witness so that no one could ever deny what happened.
But their work, and our work, is not yet done. To this day there are those who insist the Holocaust never happened; their denial of the truth is baseless and grounded in anti-Semitism, racism and hatred. Eisenhower's task has not ended; it falls to us to make sure the horrors of the Nazi regime are never forgotten and never repeated.
The President of the United States named yesterday, January 27, 2010, a day of remembrance for the Sixty-fifth Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz. The United Nations has named January 27 the annual International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust. This should not only be a day of remembrance, but a day to remind us all that in this age we must not allow the rise of hatred and intolerance to threaten our very humanity. Nor should our efforts be limited to combating anti-Semitism, but rather we should seek to counter all manifestations of discrimination and intolerance, which, as our ministers reaffirmed in Athens, "threaten the security of individuals and societal cohesion," and which "may give rise to conflict and violence on a wider scale."
We highly appreciate ODIHR's targeted work in tolerance education, awareness raising, prevention of hate crimes and law enforcement training. We also fully support the valuable efforts of the CiO's Personal Representatives for Tolerance and Non-Discrimination including Rabbi Andrew Baker and his tireless work to counter anti-Semitism in the OSCE area.
We welcome Kazakhstan's choice to promote interfaith and intercultural tolerance as one of its highest priorities during its chairmanship and we hope all participating States will follow this call by redoubling efforts in implementing relevant OSCE commitments.
Today, as we remember the horrors of the Holocaust, we have the opportunity as well as the obligation to commit ourselves to resisting injustice and intolerance in whatever forms they may take to help give meaning when we say, "Never again."
Thank you, Mister Chairman.
America Must Lead Through Engagement, Obama Says

By Stephen Kaufman
Staff Writer
Washington - There must be continued American leadership to halt the spread of nuclear weapons, develop clean energy and advance human dignity throughout the world, President Obama says, restating his commitment to global engagement.
Speaking January 27 in his first State of the Union address, Obama told U.S. lawmakers, Cabinet members, Supreme Court justices, U.S. military officers and the American people that the United States is leading through engagement to advance "the common security and prosperity of all people."
U.S. engagement includes taking a leadership role in fighting climate change; working to sustain a lasting global economic recovery; establishing partnerships around the world in science, education and innovation; and providing humanitarian food and medical assistance, including in the fight against HIV/AIDS, he said.
"America takes these actions because our destiny is connected to those beyond our shores. But we also do it because it is right," Obama said.
In defense of human dignity around the world, "we stand with the girl who yearns to go to school in Afghanistan; ... we support the human rights of the women marching through the streets of Iran; and we advocate for the young man denied a job by corruption in Guinea," he said.
The president said the threat of nuclear weapons constitutes "perhaps the greatest danger to the American people," and his administration is pursuing a strategy to reverse their spread and to ultimately seek "a world without them."
The United States and Russia are expected to resume negotiations on the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) in Geneva February 1. The president described the proposed pact as "the farthest-reaching arms control treaty in nearly two decades."
The agreement is scheduled to be signed ahead of the Nuclear Security Summit) that the president will host in April. Representatives of 44 countries will gather in Washington with the goal of securing "all vulnerable nuclear materials around the world in four years, so that they never fall into the hands of terrorists," he said.
Nations such as North Korea and Iran that are pursuing nuclear weapons, in turn, are facing stronger economic sanctions and increasing international unity against their efforts, the president said.
The president reiterated that American combat brigades will leave Iraq by the end of August, but the United States will continue to work in partnership and support with the Iraqi government and its people.  In Afghanistan, he said, stepped up pressure against the Taliban and increased training of Afghan security forces will allow those forces to take the lead for their country's security beginning in July 2011 and for American troops to begin returning home.
Most of the president's remarks focused on the American economy. Obama said that although the worst of the 2008 recession now has passed, the U.S. unemployment rate is at 10 percent, businesses have shut down and American home values have declined.
For many, "change has not come fast enough," he said, and job creation will continue to be the top domestic focus in 2010.
One key sector for economic development is clean energy, and the president said that development of that sector, along with reducing pollution and mitigating climate change, will provide new jobs and spur economic growth.
This is "the right thing to do for our future," Obama said.  "The nation that leads the clean energy economy will be the nation that leads the global economy.  And America must be that nation."
In addition, the United States needs to increase its exports and aggressively seek new markets.
"If America sits on the sidelines while other nations sign trade deals, we will lose the chance to create jobs on our shores," he said.
The president said his administration will be working in 2010 to shape the Doha round of World Trade Organization talks in order to increase trade through open markets, and "we will strengthen our trade relations in Asia and with key partners like South Korea, and Panama, and Colombia."
Along with creating jobs and increasing trade, the president called for measures to reduce the U.S. national debt, such as freezing government spending and reforming health insurance.
Obama said his proposed three-year freeze in government spending would save about $20 billion in 2011, but would not affect spending in certain areas, including national security, which includes most foreign assistance.
Passage of health insurance reform legislation not only would save lives and improve the security of many Americans, but also would "bring down the deficit by as much as $1 trillion over the next two decades," he said.
"Don't walk away from reform.  Not now.  Not when we are so close.  Let us find a way to come together and finish the job for the American people," the president said.
Obama closed by saying that democracy in a nation of 300 million citizens "can be noisy and messy and complicated."  But he urged lawmakers to "start anew" after coming through a difficult decade in order to "carry the [American] dream forward, and to strengthen our union once more."
Peritus enters subsea and floating systems oil and gas engineering sector

A new entrant into the global subsea and floating systems oil and gas engineering market was unveiled today with the launch of Peritus International. The specialist engineering consultancy will provide advanced engineering and project management services, specifically targeting clients operating in difficult and deepwater environments.

Focussing on subsea and floating systems design, the company will utilise an international network of regional engineering centres initially based in Australia, the UK and the US to deliver their expertise to the offshore provinces of the world for both capital expenditure (CAPEX) and operational expenditure (OPEX) clients.

“Taking a global approach will enable us to remain highly competitive in our chosen markets”, says Peritus International CEO Steve Hindmarsh. “It will reduce the need to duplicate resources, as specialised skills and knowledge will be shared across our projects, leading to technically superior solutions being delivered at a lower cost to our clients”.

Peritus have chosen an ideal time to enter the market as demand for experienced and reputable deepwater subsea and floating systems engineering resources is forecast to tighten considerably over future years with the oil and gas industry continuing its move into deeper waters. This shift will place even tougher technical challenges on future projects and the companies involved.

“We see the key to our success as remaining highly flexible in our approach to meeting client’s needs and of course, attracting and retaining the best minds in the business. To do this Peritus will operate as an independent business, though will utilise the world-class project management and financial systems of our major shareholder Clough Limited, to respond to ever evolving needs of offshore contractors and operators” says Mr Hindmarsh.

Building a strong foundation for growth, Peritus have assembled an international leadership team who are recognised industry experts with many years of experience in the upstream oil and gas industry. Each leader has held senior technical and management positions within major international offshore oil and gas engineering consultancies, engineering companies, contractors and operators.

“We’ve brought together some of the best people in the business here at Peritus to specifically cater to oil and gas developments in remote, hostile and deepwater environments”, says Mr. Hindmarsh. “As more accessible oil and gas deposits are depleted, there will be a real need for our area of expertise”.

Peritus’ Asia Pacific operations will initially be based in Perth with Steve Hindmarsh also serving as the Managing Director. For the past 30 years, Mr. Hindmarsh has worked in technical, managerial and executive positions for some of the biggest names in the offshore business, delivering world-class projects in the Netherlands, Malaysia, the United Kingdom and Australia.
The Peritus Americas office will be in Houston. President of Peritus Americas, Dr. Chris Tam has worked in and around the US in senior technical and managerial roles for over a decade. He brings over 25 years of engineering expertise to Peritus’ endeavours in the region, having previously worked on subsea and pipeline projects in the Middle East, Europe, Asia and Africa.

Peritus’ UK office will concentrate on the company’s projects in Europe, Africa and the Middle East (EAME). The Managing Director for this region is Graham Taylor who brings over 28 years of experience in the offshore/subsea engineering industry arena. In addition to his extensive experience in Europe, Graham has worked on prominent engineering projects in Egypt, Nigeria, Angola, Israel, Libya and Oman.

About Peritus

Peritus provides advanced subsea and floating systems engineering and project management services for field development and transportion systems to offshore projects across the globe, with a particular focus on difficult and deepwater environments.

Peritus provides services in all phases of project development from concept evaluation through Front End Engineering Design (FEED), detailed design, PMC, EPCM, construction, commissioning and operations with a strong competence in Concept Evaluation and FEED.

The Peritus business model works on a global network of regional engineering centres which enable specialised skills, knowledge and expertise to be shared across global operations. This model delivers lower cost, technically superior subsea and marine solutions for clients.

New Instruments for a New Era Are Needed

  • Fundamental changes must be made to decision-making processes within international institutions.
  • The voices of developing and emerging market countries must be listened to and given legitimacy.
  • The failure of the Doha Development Round and pervasive poverty is proof that multilateral institutions are not working.  

Davos-Klosters Switzerland, 28 January 2010 – If critical global challenges are to be met, there must be fundamental changes to decision-making processes within international institutions and a new attitude on the part of developed countries that have not listened closely enough to the needs of developing and emerging market countries. This was the message delivered by six heads of state at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2010 as they addressed the issues of the redesign of the global financial system, climate change, the chronic failure of the Doha Development Round of trade negotiations and tackling poverty.

“It is important that the G20 reach out to those not taking part, listen to their needs and reflect them in our discussions. Otherwise, it will not be effective,” said Lee Myung-Bak, President of the Republic of Korea; Chair, 2010 G20 Summit. President Lee, who is hosting the 2010 G20 Summit in November, also called on world leaders to do everything they can to reject all forms of protectionism.

Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada; 2010 G8 Summit; and Toronto G20 Summit, noted that world leaders disagree over climate change, trade and measures to safeguard the global financial system. “To square national interests with global interests it is necessary to recognize the legitimacy of the other’s [point of view],” he said. On financial regulatory reform, Harper said he was not pessimistic. “I do not think this is a hopeless exercise. Ultimately, there is recognition that problems in the financial system caused the crisis and cannot be repeated. There is recognition of the basics. If we are patient and keep working at it, progress will be made.”

The failure of the international community to come to an agreement on climate change, which will again be addressed at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of the Parties meeting in Mexico City in November 2010, proves that “the negotiation by consensus mechanism is not working” said Felipe Calderón, President of Mexico. “We have new problems and we cannot tackle [problems such as climate change] with instruments that were created in 1945,” he said. “We need to create new instruments for a new era.”

The failure to conclude the Doha Development Round and the pervasive poverty that affects the majority of the world’s population is proof that multilateral institutions are not working. “We have structures that were developed decades and decades ago when circumstances were different,” said Jacob G. Zuma, President of South Africa. “Circumstances have changed. In the end, the majority of the world does not have the right to take decisions for themselves. We have reached a point today when it is time to rethink and redesign, including decision-making processes of existing organizations.”

José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, Prime Minister of Spain, pointed to “big progress” in the area of financial regulation but urged world leaders not to lose sight of the Millennium Development Goals. “The financial crisis cannot be an excuse to reduce development aid,” he said. Nguyen Tan Dung, Prime Minister of Vietnam; Chair, 2010 ASEAN, noted that the financial crisis revealed to “weaknesses and shortcomings” in global governance. “We need a more democratic world . . . we need to touch upon the right role [for] developing countries.”

Cessna to Highlight New Programs, Service Updates at Singapore News Conference

WICHITA, Kan., Jan. 28, 2010 – Cessna Aircraft Company, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, will provide updates on aircraft programs as well as the dynamic business jet market and new customer service initiatives at its press conference on Tuesday, Feb. 2 at 3 p.m. (SST-UTC+8) at the Changi Exhibition Centre press center during the Singapore Airshow.

Cessna is a leading producer of general aviation aircraft including the world's most popular line of business jets - the Cessna Citation.

Cessna executives will provide a company and market update, and discuss the company's aircraft programs including its newest business jet, the Citation CJ4 which is nearing final certification in the United States, and its Model 162 Skycatcher light sport aircraft in production in China at Shenyang Aircraft Corporation. Senior Cessna executives will also be discussing the state of the general aviation industry in the Pacific Rim region and around the world in the wake of one of its most challenging years in history.

Cessna will also make announcements regarding customer service initiatives in the region.

"This region has been one of the strongest for Cessna during the most recent downturn. It has been least affected by the economic climate and financing issues facing the rest of the world," said Roger Whyte, Cessna's senior vice president, Sales and Marketing. "The strongest segments for Cessna in this region have been special mission and government orders."

G8 Chair Harper to Press for Financial Regulation and Improved Health of the Poorest Women and Children

  • Canada is this year’s G8 president and is hosting the G20 Summit in Toronto in June
  • Prime Minister Harper will urge G20 countries to adopt robust yet measured financial sector regulations and consider strategies to exit stimulus programmes
  • Canada will champion a G8 initiative to improve the health of the world’s poorest women and children

Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 28 January 2010 − In a special address to participants at the 40th World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada outlined his country’s priorities as president of the G8 this year and host of the G20 Toronto Summit in June. On the global economy, he told participants, Canada will urge the G20 to adopt robust yet measured financial sector regulations and consider appropriate exit strategies for unwinding the enormous economic stimulus investments that each country has made since the crisis. In the G8, Canada would propose a major initiative to improve the health of women and children in the poorest regions of the world.

At the G20 summit, Harper said, Canada will urge countries to adopt national financial regulations sufficiently strong to avoid a repetition of the global crisis. These regulations should be bolstered by an international peer review mechanism, the prime minister added. “If inadequate regulation is not addressed, I believe the consequences could be worse than before the crisis.” Harper warned that “financial regulation must have the right purposes and must not be excessive.” Noting that Canada’s banking and finance sector has weathered the crisis without any major failure or bailout, Harper argued that the key is “to encourage a culture of prudent behaviour” but not to micro-manage the industry. Though the G20 will be calling for robust regulations, “Canada will not go down the path of excessive arbitrary or punitive regulation of its financial sector.”

Harper said that Canada would also press for the G20 to discuss ways to exit the stimulus investments that governments have made in a coordinated effort to counter the impact of the economic crisis. “While it is absolutely too soon to abandon stimulus programmes, it is not too soon to think about a strategy to exit them,” he remarked, noting that Canada’s next budget would include a plan for achieving a balanced budget in the medium term.

During its G8 presidency, Harper added, Canada will champion an initiative to mobilize G8 governments, NGOs and the private sector to reduce child mortality rates, raise healthcare standards and improve the well-being of women and children in the world’s most vulnerable countries. “We must find that unity of purpose,” he said.

Emerging Markets Can’t Drive Global Recovery without Growth in the Developed World, Leaders Say

  • Large emerging markets such as Brazil and China are unlikely to be able to maintain rapid growth without a stronger economic recovery in the developed world
  • Despite massive fiscal and monetary stimulus, and inventory restocking, sustained growth is still difficult to find in most of the developed world
  • Greater regulatory coordination between the developed and developing countries is needed. However, a proposed global tax on financial transactions would be counterproductive

Davos-Klosters Switzerland, 28 January 2010 − While most emerging markets have proven remarkably resilient to the effects of the global financial crisis, they cannot act as the locomotive of global recovery unless the developed countries revive their own economies and address the structural problems that led to crisis, current and former leaders from several emerging economies told participants at this year’s Annual Meeting.

While many economists and corporate strategists look to emerging market giants such as China, India and Brazil to be the primary drivers of global demand over the next few years, it is not realistic to expect those countries to sustain their current rapid GDP growth rates without stronger recovery in the developed world, noted Mexico’s former president, Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Leon in a session on the “New Growth Narrative”.

“We need to see sound domestic macroeconomic policies in the main players in the global economy, said Zedillo, now director of Yale University’s Center for the Study of Globalization and a Member of the Foundation Board of the World Economic Forum. “Everyone needs to work very hard to clean up domestic messes in practically every country.”

While noting the stabilization of economic conditions in the developed world over the past year, several leaders expressed scepticism over the prospects for a more rapid recovery going forward, as the unprecedented fiscal and monetary stimulus measures applied during the crisis are reduced or withdrawn. “It’s difficult to talk about stability at this point,” said Aleksey Kudrin, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of the Russian Federation. “If you look at the US and European economies, yes, inventories are growing, but private demand is still very weak. It’s hard to see sustainable growth.”

Smaller, export-dependent countries are particularly vulnerable to economic malaise in the developing world, said Danilo Türk, President of Slovenia. Exports now account for 70% of Slovenia’s GDP, with the country’s fellow EU members absorbing the lion’s share. Türk praised the European Central Bank’s efforts to revive European growth with massive liquidity injections and credit supports, but predicted EU growth would remain sluggish for an extended period despite these efforts, forcing Slovenian producers to seek alternative markets.

Economic cooperation between the developed and developing countries is needed to overcome the barriers to global growth, leaders agreed. Kudrin, for example, suggested the financial crisis demonstrated the need for more effective management of the major reserve currencies, such as the US dollar and the euro. This, he said, might require the creation of new international regulatory institutions. However, efforts to impose a global tax on financial transactions – commonly known as the Tobin tax – would be counterproductive and a waste of political capital, Zedillo argued. “What we need most are regulatory systems that would prevent the kind of excessive risk taking behaviour that we saw in financial institutions in recent years,” he said.

Greece’s Papandreou Acknowledges His Country Faces Credibility Gap

  • Greece faces credibility gap over public finances
  • Greece is setting in motion wage, tax and pension reforms
  • Rodriguez Zapatero says euro is helping the zone weather the financial crisis  

Davos-Klosters Switzerland, 28 January 2010 − Greek Prime Minister George A. Papandreou acknowledged that his country faces a big “credibility gap” over its public finances, but said that the government is taking the measures needed to restore international confidence in its economy. Addressing participants in a session on “Rethinking the Eurozone” at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2010, Papandreou denied that Greece has sought, or is seeking, to raise loans either from its fellow European Union member countries or from China to help meet its financing needs. He said that a public offering of government debt paper earlier this week was heavily oversubscribed and this only proves that Greece has no need to look elsewhere for financing.

“There is a credibility gap and overcoming it is the first challenge that we face,” Papandreou said. The crisis should not only be seen as a challenge, but also as an opportunity. Greece is already setting in motion a series of structural changes, ranging from wage, tax and pension reforms to the introduction of an independent statistics bureau, which will not only help the country meet its target of cutting the public sector deficit by 4% this year, but will also boost international confidence in state reporting of its finances, he added.

Spain’s Prime Minister José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero joined Papandreou in asserting that the existence of the euro has helped the zone’s 16 member states weather the international financial crisis. “The Eurozone has been a great support,” Rodriguez Zapatero said. In an apparent reference to press speculation that some countries might withdraw from the zone, the Spanish leader was adamant that this would not happen. “Nobody is going to leave the Eurozone, just as nobody is going to leave the European Union. That is the proof of its success,” he said.

Nevertheless, both prime ministers agreed that the crisis has highlighted the need for improved coordination between member states on economic measures, particularly in tax and labour policy. “That is the great lesson,” Rodriguez Zapatero said. All Eurozone members recognize the need to become more competitive, the Spanish leader added. But increased competitiveness will not be achieved at the cost of abandoning Europe’s policies of social protection and cohesion.

The Eurozone economies remain under stress, but it is the same sort of economic and financial stress that is being faced by all developed industrial economies, said President Jean-Claude Trichet of the European Central Bank. “We see the same problems in other major industrial economies. The goal is to reinforce confidence in both markets and households,” he told participants in the session. Asked about the health of Europe’s banks, Trichet said that the European Central Bank is urging banks to display maximum transparency. It is also calling on them to do their utmost to help the real economy of the Eurozone and use profits to strengthen balance sheets rather than boost remuneration.

President Clinton on Haiti: “Don’t Tell Me They Can’t Do This!”

  • Clinton announces a partnership between the World Economic Forum, the Clinton Global Initiative and the UN to help Haiti
  • At its 40th Annual Meeting, the World Economic Forum established a special booth to coordinate private sector investment in Haiti
  • Clinton recognized the participation of the former Haitian Prime Minister Michèle Duvivier Pierre-Louis  

Davos-Klosters Switzerland, 28 January 2010 − In a special session of the 40th World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, William J. Clinton, Founder, William J. Clinton Foundation; President of the United States (1993-2001); and UN Special Envoy to Haiti made a robust call for immediate aid and sustained investment to assist Haiti as it struggles to build a new and prosperous nation out of the rubble of the devastating earthquake of 12 January. In partnership with the Clinton Global Initiative and the United Nations, the World Economic Forum will work to increase private sector involvement in Haiti for the long term. “We are reminded of the common humanity which we all share,” said Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum.

Clinton acknowledged that Haiti faces enormous challenges. The poorest country in the Western Hemisphere even before the quake, Haiti has suffered the loss of some 150,000 lives, with hundreds of thousands more left maimed, homeless and hungry. The country’s needs are immediate. “I spent last weekend on toilets and trucks,” said Clinton. “I need a hundred trucks yesterday.” Food distribution centres, which now number just 15, need to be increased exponentially.

After UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon named him special envoy to Haiti last May, Clinton set about leveraging the economic might of the Haitian diaspora and drew investors from many sectors to help the Haitians implement their own growth plan, originally drafted by economist Paul Collier. The earthquake is an enormous setback to the progress of the Haitians. “This is horrible for Haiti. They are virtually in shock now,” said Clinton. “But I still believe they have the same chance to escape their past and build a better tomorrow.”

“I believe a country can rise from the ashes in a very short time,” said Clinton, citing Rwanda’s scorching growth, and Indonesia’s recovery after the tsunami. “Don’t tell me they can’t do this! This is an opportunity for the Haitian people to build a country that they want to become.”

Motorola Ships 100 Millionth Digital Entertainment Device; Celebrates 50 Years of Video Innovation

HORSHAM, Pa., Jan 28, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX News Network/ -- Motorola, Inc. (NYSE: MOT) announced today that its Home and Networks Mobility business has shipped 100 million digital entertainment devices, a significant milestone that reflects the achievements of both the company and the worldwide service provider industry. This milestone coincides with the industry's transition from the "Digital Era" to the new "Internet Era of Television" (TV).

Motorola's 2009 Media Engagement Barometer highlighted this transition and clearly demonstrated a rise in consumers' expectations for connectivity to content and devices anytime and anywhere. The study also revealed strong demand for content customization - in other words the ability to control their experience - whether on the TV, PC or mobile device.

To meet these new demands of the "Internet Era of TV," Motorola is focusing on three critical consumer needs: content, community and control.

"Motorola is proud to celebrate its rich video heritage and will continue providing customers with advanced systems that accelerate the delivery of personalized media experiences to consumers," said Dan Moloney, president of Motorola's Home and Networks business. "Motorola is committed to providing industry-leading innovative solutions that enable service providers to be successful in the "Internet Era of TV."

"With over 100 million unit shipments, Motorola's digital entertainment devices are the most widely deployed in the world," said Mike Paxton, principal analyst with In-Stat, a leading market research firm. "Motorola's Home and Networks Mobility business is a leading innovator in the technology industry and it continues to position its products to define 'what's next in video.'"

Motorola has a history of over 50 years of bringing creative, cutting edge inventions to the video industry and has always been at the forefront of technology - from its original days in TV manufacturing to the design of the world's first analog cable TV system and the creation of the world's first digital HDTV technical standard.

As part of Motorola's research and development initiatives and as part of Motorola's focus on what's next for video, Motorola is contributing to Georgia Tech's Fourth Annual Convergence Innovation Competition. Through the competition, Motorola is giving students the opportunity to connect classroom and research lab work to the business world with the creation of innovative and commercially relevant applications and services for set-top boxes, among other content delivery devices.

Motorola's Home and Networks Mobility business delivers fully integrated and customizable media solutions enabling operators to provide personalized, rich media experiences to their subscribers. As a global video leader in digital entertainment devices, digital and Internet protocol (IP) video headends and digital video processing, Motorola brings its video expertise to bear as operators - wireline, wireless, cable and telco - seek to evolve their networks for the future.

Forum Report Identifies Policy Mechanisms to Bridge Funding Gap for Clean Economy

  • New Forum report sets out 35 policy tools to finance global shift to a low-carbon economy
  • Finance and industry chiefs are discussing the report’s proposals at the Annual Meeting in Davos
  • Investment in clean energy is remarkably resilient but investors lack the mechanisms to bridge the financing gap  

Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 28 January 2010 − In a report released today, entitled Green Investing 2010: Policy Mechanisms to Bridge the Financing Gap, the World Economic Forum reveals that investment in clean energy has held up better than expected during the financial crisis and resulting recession, but a considerable gap still exists between current levels of investment and what is needed to begin reducing the world’s carbon emissions.

In another report, Green Investing: Towards a Low Carbon Energy Infrastructure, the World Economic Forum stated that moving to a low-carbon energy infrastructure will require global annual investment of around US$ 500 billion per annum, if the increase in global average temperatures is to be restricted to 2°C.

Investment in 2009 was remarkably resilient at US$ 145 billion, down only 6% from US$ 155 billion in 2008, as the shortfall created by the financial crisis was largely filled by the launch of green stimulus initiatives around the world. In addition, the Copenhagen Accord, which was noted by the participants at the COP meeting in December 2009, contained a commitment by developed countries to invest US$ 100 billion in developing countries. While the next few years are likely to see record investment activities, a significant financing gap of US$ 350 billion still exists. To unleash adequate funds to bridge this gap, appropriate policy mechanisms are required.

The report’s authors, Anuradha Gurung and Max von Bismarck from the World Economic Forum, and Chris Greenwood and Michael Liebreich from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, state that “as a result of the continued financing gap, there is an urgent need for policy-makers around the world to implement measures at the regional, national and sub-national level, which will encourage investment in clean energy technology and projects. With this in mind, the report provides policy-makers with a toolkit consisting of 35 different policy mechanisms, which can be used to promote various clean energy sectors. The mechanisms can be chosen based on stage of technological development – R&D/proof of concept, demonstration and scale-up, commercial roll-out, diffusion and maturity – and also on stage of economic development.”

Policy mechanisms have to be tailored in the national, state and local context. Mechanisms for a financially viable shift to a low-carbon economy range from the establishment of national laboratories or research centres; requiring public entities to  procure clean energy or use emerging efficient technologies; programmes designed to reduce the cost of private lending and improve project economics; and microfinance.

A new set of ratings are used to evaluate the policy mechanisms and is based on how well they are likely to perform on three key criteria: whether they scale; whether they are economically efficient; and the extent to which each dollar of cost to the public purse catalyses private investment.

“The world needs a substantial increase in private investment flows into clean energy and energy efficiency if we want to avoid severe impacts of climate change,” said Jack Ehnes, Chief Executive Officer, CalSTRS, and Member of the Expert Committee. “This report not only lays out key opportunity sectors for private investors but also identifies very concrete tools for governments to bridge the climate investment gap.”

This year’s report provides an up-to-date description of 10 emerging, large-scale clean energy sectors that will form part of any low-carbon energy system of the future. It also describes the four key enablers that are required if these clean energy sources are to be integrated into the existing infrastructure: smart grids, power storage, advanced transportation and carbon, capture and storage. Given the importance of energy efficiency in moving to a more sustainable energy mix, the report also includes a separate chapter on energy efficiency.

The report is the result of a year-long collaboration between the World Economic Forum and Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Guidance was provided by an expert committee of 16 leading industry practitioners, thought leaders and academics:

Morgan Bazilian, Special Advisor on Energy and Climate Change to the Director-General, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Vienna
Marcel Brenninkmeijer, Founding Chairman, Good Energies, Switzerland
Wes Edens, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Fortress Investment, USA
Jack Ehnes, Chief Executive Officer, California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS), USA
Diana Farrell, Deputy Director of US National Economic Council; Formerly, Director, McKinsey Global
Institute, McKinsey & Co., USA
Peter Gutman, Global Head, Renewable Energy and Environmental Finance, Standard Chartered Bank, United Kingdom
Kirsty Hamilton, Associate Fellow, Energy, Renewable Energy Finance Project, Chatham House, United Kingdom
Wen Hsieh, Partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), USA
Bruce Huber, Head of Cleantech Investment Banking; Chairman, Technology Investment Banking and Managing Director, Jefferies International, United Kingdom
Jeremy Kranz, Vice-President, GIC Special Investments, GIC Real Estate, USA
Marc S. Lipschultz, Member and Global Head of Energy and Infrastructure, Kohlberg, Kravis and Roberts and Co., USA
William E. McGlashan Jr, Managing Partner, TPG Growth, USA
Eric Martinot, Senior Research Director, Institute for Sustainable Energy Policies, Japan
Chris Mottershead, Vice-Principal, Research and Innovation, King’s College London, United Kingdom
Alan Salzman, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Partner, VantagePoint Venture Partners, USA
Eric Usher, Head, Renewable Energy and Finance Unit, United Nations Environment Programme, Paris

Close to 30 public and private sessions explore climate change and low-carbon economic growth issues at this year’s World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos-Klosters. Topics range from industry-focused discussions on scaling up green investing, energy efficiency, smart grids, and carbon capture and sequestration demonstrations, among others, through to business conversations with governments and expert organizations on the broader policy environment that is most useful to focus the private sector on green growth following the outcomes of the Copenhagen Climate meeting in December.

One particular area of discussion at this year’s Annual Meeting involves the design of a high-profile platform involving international organizations, multilateral financial institutions and investor networks, with an aim to launch innovative mechanisms for financing low-carbon energy infrastructure in developing countries in 2010.

Kesoram Industries Ltd


28th January, 2010: Kesoram Industries Ltd. is a well diversified B K Birla flagship conglomerate having interest in Tyres, Cement, Rayon Yarn and Transparent Paper etc. with a focus on two core business segments i.e. Tyres which accounted for 57% and Cement 38% of the turnover in 9 months ended  31st December 2009.


The Company is listed on three major Stock Exchanges in India i.e. National Stock Exchange of India Ltd. Mumbai, Bombay Stock Exchange Ltd. Mumbai, The Calcutta Stock Exchange Association Ltd., Kolkata and at the Societe  de la Bourse de Luxembourg, Luxembourg, abroad.


The Company in its Board Meeting held today at Mumbai has approved the Unaudited Quarterly Results for the Quarter and Nine Months period ended 31st December 2009 and has recorded a Sales of Rs.1245.79 Crore and 3673.94 crore for the quarter ended and Nine Months period ended 31st December 2009 respectively, which is an increase of over 18% over the corresponding quarter and Nine Months period ended 2008 respectively.


The Company has performed well.  Its PBIDT and PBT stood at Rs.135.87 Crores and 64.83 Crores an increase  of 32.88% and 98.50% for the quarter ended 31.12.2009 over the corresponding quarter of December 2008. The  nine months period December 2009 PBIDT and PBT has also seen an impressive growth over the last corresponding  nine months period by registering an increase of Rs.167.68 Crores and 123.33 Crores, a growth of over 38% and 45% respectively.


The Company has an installed Cement Capacity of 7.25 Million Tons/Annum in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh with captive power plants. The Vasavadatta Cement Plant of the Company with a manufacturing capacity of 5.75 million ton is one of the best energy efficient Cement Plants in India.


The Company in the recent past has embarked on an aggressive expansion mode in its Tyre Section by increasing the capacities at Brown Field Project at Balasore in Orissa as well as undertaking Greenfield Project at Uttarakhand. The total capacity at the Orissa Plant has been augmented to 271 MT/Day of Truck/Bus Bias, LCV and Off The Road Tyres. It is in the process of implementing Passenger/LCV Radial tyres of 80 MT/Day at a cost of Rs.450 Crores. This is expected to commence production by December 2010.


The total capacity at the Greenfield Project in Haridwar is proposed to be 637 Ton/Day with an estimated cost of Rs.2218.60 Crores. Out of this, Truck Bias and Tractor Tyres plant of 257 MT/Day is fully commissioned and operative. Balance 60 MT/Day is expected to be completely operative by March 2010. Commercial Production of 95 MT/Day of Motor Cycle/LCV tyres has started in Oct. 2009 and shall be fully operative by March 2010. The first phase of Truck/Bus Radial project of 225 MT/Day is expected to start Commercial Production by March 2010.


Vodafone and RIM Launch the BlackBerry Bold 9700 Smartphone in India


New Delhi, January 28, 2010 – Vodafone Essar, one of India’s leading cellular service providers, and Research In Motion (RIM) (NASDAQ: RIMM; TSX: RIM), a world leader in wireless innovation, today announced the launch of the BlackBerry® Bold™ 9700 smartphone for Vodafone customers in India.


The sleek and stylish BlackBerry Bold 9700 smartphone delivers powerful communications and multimedia applications with outstanding performance, giving Vodafone customers an exceptional mobile experience. The new smartphone is expected to be available at Vodafone stores across India on January 29, 2009 and priced at Rs. 31990*.


“Further to the immense success of the BlackBerry Bold 9000 launch, we are delighted to introduce the latest BlackBerry Bold 9700 to Vodafone customers in India. This launch reiterates our commitment towards providing our customers with superior products and services, which enables them to balance their professional and personal lives,” said Kumar Ramanathan, Chief Marketing Officer, Vodafone Essar Ltd.


“We are very excited to introduce the BlackBerry Bold 9700 in India. This best-in-class smartphone will certainly appeal to Vodafone customers, offering a sleek and elegant design packed with powerful communications and entertainment features,” said Frenny Bawa, Vice President, India, Research In Motion.


The BlackBerry Bold 9700 supports 3G HSDPA networks around the world and is equipped with a performance enhancing next-generation (624 MHz) processor and 256 MB on-board Flash memory. The exciting new BlackBerry Bold 9700 features built-in GPS and Wi-Fi®, a 3.2 MP camera with video recording and a sharp, dazzling display. The dark chrome frame and leatherette back add to the new smartphone's sleek and elegant look, while the narrow profile, balanced weight and soft-touch sides allow it to feel incredibly comfortable in one hand.


The BlackBerry Bold 9700 also supports BlackBerry App World™ which features a broad and growing catalog of mobile applications developed specifically for BlackBerry smartphones. Categories include games, entertainment, IM and social networking, news, weather, productivity and more.

Polysius supplies two 12,000 tpd kiln systems for China

Wuhu Conch Cement Ltd., Wuhu /Chinese province of Anhui, decided to continue their partnership with Polysius and ordered two kiln lines with a capacity of 12,000 tpd cement clinker. These plants will be equipped with the 5-stage and 2-string DOPOL® preheater with a PREPOL®-MSC calciner and a SNCR system. Two calciner burners will be installed in the calciner and a POLFLAME® clinkering zone burner is to be used in the 96m-long rotary kiln.
The new order is a further milestone in the more than 100-year old fruitful partnership between Polysius and China. Since 2004, two 10,000 tpd cement clinker kiln lines from Polysius have been in operation at Anhui Conch Cement. Polysius is represented by Polysius Shanghai Trading Company, providing close support and direct service for our Chinese customers.

Polysius, with subsidiary firms on all 5 continents and more than 2,000 employees all around the world, is one of the leading engineering companies equipping the cement and minerals industries.
Polysius is a strong partner offering project elaboration, engineering and design, shipment, field assembly and commissioning, as well as comprehensive service activities, for complete production lines, individual products, plant conversions and upgrades.