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  • Publication Date: 12-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: The provided an overview of the Indian economy. This issue will focus on three key sectors: industry, the financial sector, and agriculture. The three sectors, while seemingly unrelated, are key to India's future. Indian industry is undergoing unprecedented change as a result of the deregulation process begun in 1991, the recent downturn in the domestic economy, and the crisis in Asia. Established industries are being challenged and new ones are emerging.
  • Topic: Industrial Policy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Tim Forsyth
  • Publication Date: 10-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: This workshop was arranged by the RIIA under the sponsorship of the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) of Japan to explore ways of increasing international investment in renewable energy technology in Asia. Enhancing renewable energy investment is clearly relevant to global strategies to mitigate climate change. However, the two debates on climate change policy and renewable energy investment have largely remained separate, and characterized by tendencies to discuss large-scale global flows of energy and investment on the one hand, and local development-oriented practice on the other. The workshop attempted to integrate these two debates, and therefore form part of a growing body of knowledge to inform the current climate change negotiations with practical options available to small and large businesses. The workshop had three main aims: to identify the implications of the Kyoto Protocol for international renewable energy investment; to define technology transfer and identify how it may be increased for renewable energy in South and Southeast Asia; to assess what public and private forms of finance could be sought to ensure the success of renewable energy businesses in South and Southeast Asia. The workshop was attended by some 30 industrialists, financiers and renewable energy specialists from around the world. This paper is a summary of the proceedings. In order to encourage frank exchange, the workshop was held under Chatham House Rule of confidentiality and anonymity, so individual speakers are not named.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Environment, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Asia
  • Author: Jesmond Blumenfeld
  • Publication Date: 07-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: As South Africa approaches its second inclusive elections in 1999, the government's economic record will come under increasing scrutiny. Against widespread expectations of a post-apartheid transformation in economic performance, the country's achievements in output, investment and employment have been profoundly disappointing. The adoption of a new, and more market- and investor-friendly, macroeconomic strategy in 1996 boosted confidence by promising major structural and policy reforms, but this has since been undermined by failure to meet most of the strategy's targets. In this Briefing Paper, Jesmond Blumenfeld analyses the origins, content and outcomes of the strategy as well as the economic and political dilemmas that it has created.
  • Topic: Economics, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: South Africa, New Delhi
  • Author: Ralph Negrine
  • Publication Date: 07-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: The last decade of the 20th century has apparently seen a profound change in the way in which European media handle their reporting of the political process. It is a process which marks an end to the formality and sense of obligation with which parliamentary debates and the activities of individual politicians have traditionally been treated. It has been paralleled by far-reaching changes in the ways in which politicians seek to influence their electorate. This briefing paper summarizes the findings of a comprehensive study that attempts to quantify what these changes in presentation of news and information might really mean.
  • Topic: Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Abiodun Alao
  • Publication Date: 06-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: Prior to the recent controversy over the transfer of arms, little international attention was devoted to Sierra Leone. Even its civil war, which is at the root of the matter, did not attract any significant attention outside West Africa, despite the fact that it had claimed nearly 50,000 lives. Although its enormous diamond deposits have always attracted some interest, this has been limited to private companies and individual entrepreneurs. Many Sierra Leoneans believe that had there been sustained concern about the predicament of their country, the entire arms controversy might have been avoided. This briefing paper does not, however, attempt to delve into the complexities surrounding the sale of arms to Sierra Leone and deals only tangentially with the role of mercenaries that has been the subject of so much scrutiny. Rather, it traces the major events leading to the civil war that began in March 1991, bringing with it immense suffering for this impoverished nation. This is a tale of intrigue and power struggles that has involved most of the West African region, and has allowed unscrupulous actors from as far afield as South Africa, Britain and the United States to dabble in the affairs of this country. It is a salutary lesson in the lack of concern about the fate of small nations in the post-Cold War era.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Democratization, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, South America
  • Author: George Joffé
  • Publication Date: 06-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: The current situation in Algeria is the direct result of a crisis that developed in the wake of the country-wide riots in 1988 and appeared to have been resolved by political and economic reform up to 1992. Despite a brief period of political liberalization — which, in reality was unsuccessfully manipulated by the regime in power to guarantee its own survival — Algeria has been in the grip of a virtual civil war for the past five years. In these circumstances, the behaviour of the regime and of its clandestine opposition have become parallel experiences, despite the gestures towards renewed democratization made in the past two years. The reality for the vast majority of Algerians — with figures for civilian deaths to date ranging from 50,000 to 120,000— is one of constant fear, both of arbitrary arrest and worse from the authorities and of summary and terminal justice from the clandestine opposition. For these circumstances to be properly appreciated, therefore, some knowledge of the events leading up to the contemporary situation is necessary.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Politics, Religion
  • Political Geography: Algeria, Hiroshima
  • Author: Jonathan Krueger
  • Publication Date: 05-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: The international community is increasingly turning to the use of multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) to solve problems of global environmental degradation and transboundary pollution. One of the most important of these MEAs is the 1989 Basel Convention dealing with transboundary movements of hazardous waste. The Convention has been instrumental in helping to eliminate the dumping of industrialized countries' hazardous wastes on developing countries. However, the development of the regime has been slow and it is now tackling the more controversial issue of regulating 'recyclable' hazardous wastes. This briefing paper provides a short guide to the development and current status of the international effort to manage transboundary movements of hazardous wastes.
  • Topic: Environment, International Organization, Science and Technology
  • Author: Haruko Satoh
  • Publication Date: 05-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: Among the now G–8 countries, perhaps the most stable political relationship in the past decade or so has been between Britain and Japan. While the two countries do not necessarily rank high in each other's foreign policy priorities, their leaders have always made sure publicly to endorse the growing ties in strong and positive language. Prime Minister Tony Blair used the occasion of his official visit to Tokyo this January to echo Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto's own positive views of the relationship, expressed to Blair at the G–8 summit in Denver. To Hashimoto's 'Britain is a special partner to Japan', Blair confirmed that UK–Japan relations were 'as strong as ever', in line with the remarks of his predecessors, which had ranged from a 'dynamic, plain-speaking partnership', 'strategic partnership' in the post-Cold War era, to 'natural partnership'. Furthermore, compared with Japan's relations with other major European states, specifically France and Germany, the contours of UK–Japan relations seem to stand out more. There is a strong economic relationship between the two. The UK–Japan Action Agenda of September 1996 was the first of its kind to be agreed between Japan and a European state, reflecting Britain's resolve to be the 'outward looking' member in the EU, and to keep ahead in the primarily economic competition for Japanese interest in Europe. Cooperation between the two countries has been credited as the key to success in some post-Cold War multilateral agreements, such as the UN arms register or the recent Kyoto conference on global warming, here reflecting the scope of official cooperation between the two governments. This track record supports the leaders' claims that Britain and Japan are special partners. Nevertheless, there is a sense that the relationship is still bound in the realm of political rhetoric. Neither the positive language nor the track record of achievements can dispel the perception that Europe—Japan relations are the weakest in the trilateral world of Europe, Japan and the United States. The Hague Declaration of 1991 — a document outlining further commitment to cooperation between Japan and the EU — the UK–Japan Action agenda, and the subsequent similar documents between Japan and France or Germany, have only received cursory attention. 2 While UK–Japan relations may be the key to genuinely strengthening Europe—Japan ties, there are issues that need to be addressed to promote further progress.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Japan, United Kingdom, Malaysia, Netherlands
  • Author: Volker Perthes
  • Publication Date: 02-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: In the early months of 1998, the outlook for relations between Iraq and the West looked distinctly bleak. The crisis over UN inspections of Iraq's potential to create weapons of mass destruction began in November 1997 with the Iraqi government's attempt to control the make-up of the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) inspection teams on the grounds that the Anglo-American components of them were, in effect, spies came to a head in February 1998 when the United States and Britain insisted on full, unrestricted compliance with all UN sanctions under the threat of military action. Even though Iraq reluctantly acquiesced in Western demands, little thought appeared to be given in American and British planning to what the consequence of such action would be on Iraqis themselves and on Iraqi public opinion.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, International Law, United Nations
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Keun-Wook Paik, Jae-Yong Choi
  • Publication Date: 01-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Chatham House
  • Abstract: The lack of indigenous oil and gas resources in Northeast Asia is a real obstacle to the region's economic development, and the region has paid the price. The importance of the introduction of pipeline gas into Northeast Asia lies not only in diversifying supply sources but also in providing price leverage for the region's consumers. Despite many implementation problems, the Sino-Russian agreement on East Siberian gas and pipeline development laid a firm basis for the introduction of pipeline gas into the region, and this could fundamentally affect the region's energy supply balance in the coming decades. The introduction of pipeline gas will open a new era of multilateral cooperation in the region. It is now no longer a matter of whether but when and how this gas will be introduced. Northeast Asia — comprising China, Russian Asia (Siberia and the Far East), Korea and Japan — forms the world's biggest market for liquefied natural gas (LNG). Out of world trade totalling just over 100 bcm in 1996, 63.8 bcm was imported by Japan and 13 bcm by Korea, together representing 75% of the world total. Given that China is set to import both LNG and pipeline gas in the next decade, there will be further rapid growth in the region's demand for gas. Many questions about the scale of expansion, the introduction of pipeline gas as a part of the expansion, the role of natural gas in power generation, and the establishment of multilateral cooperation for the pipeline development remain unresolved. Nevertheless, recent announcements by CNPC (China National Petroleum Corporation) of two contracts signed with the Kazakstan government for the development of oilfields for transport via pipeline to western China are a strong signal that the Northeast Asian region is set to witness the introduction of long-distance pipeline oil. In the longer term, these developments may be eclipsed by the development of pipeline gas. This paper briefly reviews the potential gas and oil supply sources to the Northeast Asian region and recent developments, together with the problems that need to be tackled for early implementation of pipeline gas. After presenting the results of a unique survey on the views of both Japanese and Korean companies on the Northeast Asian natural gas market and the development of long-distance pipelines, the paper discusses the implications of such developments.
  • Topic: Development, Energy Policy
  • Political Geography: Japan, China, East Asia, Northeast Asia