(eng)7 Minutes...news, facts & stories ! - Dec. 03

Jesse Hirsh (jesse@tao.ca)
Mon, 2 Dec 1996 23:05:00 -0500 (EST)


---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Mon, 2 Dec 1996 23:12:24 -0200
From: 7minutes <7minutes@zonafranca.com>
To: undisclosed-recipients@zonafranca.com
Subject: 7 Minutes...news, facts & stories ! - Dec. 03

7 Minutes...news, facts & stories ! Vol. 1, Dec. 3, 1996
@news for The Global Village.

1. Pakistan : Overcoming immediate problems !
2. Indian police officer : >We are sick and tired of these Tibetans.<
3. Australia : Aborigines claim land near urban area.
4. Brazilian car parts manufacturer needs factory in the US.
5. Malaysia : Fresh Products for America and Europe !
6. Where does a big Bank look to diversify ?
7. >There were a lot of dreams< -
____________________________________________________________

***Pakistan : Overcoming immediate problems !
The United Arab Emirates expressed their support for Pakistan's interim
government and its economic policies. The United Arab Emirates offered a $
350 million medium term loan which will improve Pakistan's
balance-of-payment position. Another $ 160 million loan facility is
expected to be arranged with the World Bank soon, too.
>This is the first good news I heard,< Mr. Sahid Burki, the financial
advisor to the interim government, said. He lined out, the government now
has increased flexibility to arrange financing - including for economic
reforms. Pakistan will now have easier access to the
world-financial-markets for commercial loans. In the near future Pakistan
plans to offer $ 300 millions of Yen-denominated bonds.
The United Arab Emirates made the loan offering to Pakistan, because they
are very interested to make direct investments in the country - for example
in state enterprises which will be privatized.

***Indian police officer : >We are sick and tired of these Tibetans.<
A small group of just about 50 Tibetan teens tried to block a road to
prevent Chinese President Jiang Zemin's convoy from reaching New Delhi
airport (for departure to Pakistan) on time. Nervously Indian authorities
ordered police to clear the way.
>Tibet is ours, Tibet is ours - long live the Dalai Lama< the Tibetan teens
screamed (protesting China's politics to destroy the culture of Tibet).
Police removed the small group in nervous action, pushing and tearing them
into police vans within minutes.

During the 3 day visit by Chinese President Jiang Zemin to India, exiled
Tibetans protested emotionally in the streets of New Delhi. They feel
totally lost, because nobody in government anywhere in The Global Village
does really care about the unique Tibetan culture, which is threatened to
be extinct by Chinese policies. During a visit to Australia in September,
the Dalai Lama spoke publicly about the possibility, he may be the last in
a long tradition of spiritual leaders.
A movie about the Tibetan tragedy (produced in Morocco) by Touchstone
Pictures (a unit of Walt Disney) may help to highlight the fate of Tibet,
when it hits the screens next year. Chinese officials tried to discourage
Disney from making the movie by talking about adverse consequences for
marketing Disney products in China. Disney however did not give in - they
know : running a mass-civilization without Mickey Mouse is next to
impossible. So China will have to compromise with Disney, if it intends to
become a western-style mass civilization !
May be Disney executives should be in charge of running Tibet as a Chinese
province : at least they know how to market cultural heritage to benefit
modern mass-civilization ?

***Australia : Aborigines claim land near urban area.
A tribal group of native Australian Aborigines is claiming vast land areas
in Australia's Northern Territories surrounding the state capital Darwin (
on the northern coast ). A spokesman for the Aborigines said, they want
negotiations with government for financial compensation of lands which
can't be returned. Laws rule, >privately owned property< and some kind of
publicly used land (including roads) can not be returned.
The Aborigines want undeveloped land ( potentially worth to be billions of
dollars ) returned to them. Darwin area residents are not amused. They fear
to loose access to beautiful beaches and recreational areas. The Aborigines
however made it understood, they do not oppose development and won't block
local residents from land they may regain eventually.
The high entrepreneurial spirit of Aborigines however will make it
difficult for established businessmen to keep the role of developers for
themselves.

***Brazil car parts manufacturer needs factory in the US.
>We need to be where our principal clients need us.< Abram Kasinski of car
parts manufacturer Cofab, explained. The company has a contract to supply
Chrysler USA >just in time< with customized shock absorbers and needs to
build a factory in a location near to Chrysler's plants.
Mr. Kasinski said, he is negotiating with 3 state governments of the US.
>I was very open with the three state governors. I told them that,
according to the contract with Chrysler, I must have the factory operating
next year. But I don't have money to pay for the construction.<
Attracting industrial investments which mean jobs, governments everywhere
are ready to offer prospective investors all kinds of incentives - from
cheap land, arranging financing and tax holidays to paying for training of
workers. Mr. Kasinski said, the new factory would employ up to 1.000
people, which could result in 5.000 more jobs, because the local economy
will be inspired - including taxes and other fees which would go the states
coffers.
Cofap, which already has an overseas plant in Portugal to supply European
car manufacturers, also needs to build a new factory in Argentine to supply
a local Fiat plant there.

***Malaysia : Fresh Products for America and Europe !
.>Confectionery plants in most western countries are quite rigid and they
produce the same brands and products for years. But our
plant-within-a-plant concept allows us to introduce new products to keep up
with consumer trends and meet our customers specifications easily,< Jackson
Tan, managing director of Malaysia's Standard Confectionery Berhad says,
announcing his company's plans to start marketing products like frozen
cakes in American and European markets next year.

Last year the company exported 60% of its frozen cakes to southeast Asian
countries, including Japan and China. One of the companies recent hits are
frozen >mini cream puffs< of which 5 millions were sold in Japan in the
last 6 months. The company aims to establish its >Silver Bird< logo as a
premium brand name.

***Where does a big Bank look to diversify ?
Everywhere big companies are >diversifying< into the financial markets.
Banks are looking to define new roles for themselves. Britain's National
Westminster Bank for some time is considering to diversify into the >office
supply< business. In the US and Europe the market for distributing office
products (stationery and more) has undergone big changes : companies like
Office Depot in the US cater to small, medium and increasingly to big
business - substituting local merchants.
A bank like National Westminster has expertise in the field, because it
needs to purchase office supplies products in bulk for its branch-network.
National Westminster Bank has a program named >BusinessPlus< to explore
opportunities to diversify its services to business. If the bank decides to
go forward with plans, it would sell office-supply-items from a catalogue
(to be ordered via telecom) for next day delivery.
The idea meets resistance from companies in the >office supplies< business,
which also are customers of the bank. However, some big retail companies
have moved into financial services before.

***>There were a lot of dreams< -
Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nayhan (78), the ruler of Abu Dhabi since 1966,
recalls the time before he became the ruler of Abu Dhabi. >I was dreaming
about our land catching up with the modern world - but I was not able to do
anything, because I did not have the wherewithal in my hand to achieve
these dreams. I was sure, however, that one day they would become true.<
When he became the ruler of Abu Dhabi, substantial oil-revenues began to
flow in. When Britain withdrew from the region, he convinced 7 neighboring
Emirates to establish the United Arab Emirates on Dec. 2, 1971.
For the past 25 years, Sheikh Zayed has headed the United Arab Emirates -
and realized his original dreams for the economic well-being of all its
citizens and greening the desert through sophisticated irrigation systems.
While oil production still dominates the economy (GDP: $ 36 billion), the
United Arab Emirates are on course to become a major financial center and
already are a popular destination for tourists from the region who enjoy
sports, the relaxed lifestyle, the beaches, game fishing and shopping -
especially at Dhubai's world-famous >duty free< airport shopping center.
Migrant labor ( mostly from Arab countries, India, Bangladesh, Philippines,
Pakistan ) helped to build the country. 75 % of the 2.4 million residents
in the United Arab Emirates are foreigners (working in trade and industry,
diversifying from oil), potentially posing a threat to the cultural
identity of the Emirates.
Its development is the biggest challenge for the country. Last July the
Sheikh introduced legislation which requires foreigners whose working
permits or visas expired, to go home.
During the last 25 years, the United Arab Emirates gained material wealth.
The Future requires matching the cultural values towards the global
challenges : New, original dreams !