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  • 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
  • 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: Francesca di Mauro
  • Publication Date: 10-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: No abstract is available.
  • Topic: International Political Economy, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Karel Lannoo
  • Publication Date: 05-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for European Policy Studies
  • Abstract: The agreement reached in the Council of EU Finance Ministers (Ecofin) on 1 December 1997 on taxation policy can be considered as a landmark in EU direct tax harmonisation. The Council agreed on a package of measures to combat harmful tax competition in the EU, including a code of conduct on corporate taxation and elements which should enable the Commission to draft a new proposal for a directive on the taxation of income from savings. The Council invited the Taxation Policy Group to continue its work and instituted a Review Group to assess harmful tax competition. The first and, until now, last EU measures in the area of direct taxation date back to 1990. These abolished double taxation between enterprises of the same group.
  • Topic: Government, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Michael E. OHanlon, Jerre Wilson
  • Publication Date: 12-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Today's U.S. military is about one-third smaller and one-third less expensive than it was at the end of the Cold War. Even so, on a unit-by-unit basis it is as good as the U.S. armed forces of Ronald Reagan's presidency. It is far from hollow; its readiness to carry out a wide range of operations from warfighting to peacekeeping to deterrence remains quite good on the whole.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Chantal Mouffe, Abdelwahab El-Affendi, Bert A. Rockman, Doreen Massey, Tony McGrew, Kimberly Hutchings, Niels Jacob Harbitz
  • Publication Date: 09-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for the Study of Democracy, University of Westminster
  • Abstract: Ideological disputes about the respective domains of the state and the market have convulsed much of the twentieth century. Yet recent research and experience suggest that the interaction between politics and economics, between the state and the market, is complex and systemic. An understanding of these systemic properties is crucial for effective democratic reconstruction. This is especially so in countries with a legacy of communism - such as the transition states of the former Soviet Union and East-Central Europe - where not only the market but the state, and indeed society, may have to be reconstructed, if not reinvented.
  • Topic: Gender Issues, Globalization, Government
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom, Soviet Union, Central Europe
  • Author: Chantal Mouffe, Abdelwahab El-Affendi, Bert A. Rockman, Doreen Massey, Tony McGrew, Kimberly Hutchings, Niels Jacob Harbitz
  • Publication Date: 09-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for the Study of Democracy, University of Westminster
  • Abstract: Does the power of the media threaten democracy (understood as the participation of the people in political debate and decision- making)? In answering this question we need to distinguish between three kinds of power: political, economic, and intellectual.
  • Topic: Gender Issues, Globalization, Government
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom