FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE

SCAVENGING THE INTERNET

Archive for the ‘IRAN’ Category

DOCTORS AMONG US-BACKED COUP PLOTTERS: IRAN

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 21, 2009

January 20, 2009 Tuesday – Muharram 22, 1430

Agence France-Presse

PUBLISHED BY ‘DAWN’ (Pakistan)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘DAWN’ (Pakistan)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEM - USA, BANKRUPTCIES - USA, CRIMINAL FOREIGN POLICIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, HOUSING CRISIS - USA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES - USA, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, RECESSION, STATE TERRORISM, THE ARMS INDUSTRY, THE MEDIA (US AND FOREIGN), THE UNITED NATIONS, USA | Leave a Comment »

AHMADINEJAD CONGRATULATES HAMAS ON ‘VICTORY’ (Iran)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 19, 2009

1330 PST, Monday, January 19, 2009

The International News

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE INTERNATIONAL NEWS’ (Pakistan)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN’ (USA)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEM - USA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, CRIMINAL FOREIGN POLICIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, HATE MONGERING AND BIGOTRY, HUMAN RIGHTS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES, INDUSTRIES - USA, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, ISRAEL, MILITARY CONTRACTS, PALESTINE, RECESSION, STATE TERRORISM, THE ARMS INDUSTRY, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN STRUGGLE, THE PRESIDENCY - USA, THE UNITED NATIONS, USA, WAR CRIMES, WARS AND ARMED CONFLICTS, WEAPONS | Leave a Comment »

TELECOM FIRM SET TO INVEST $1BN IN IRAN – EMIRATES TELECOMMUNICATIONS CORPORATION (ETISALAT) YESTERDAY SAID A CONSORTIUM IT HEADS WILL INVEST AT LEAST $1 BILLION IN A MOBILE PHONE NETWORK IN IRAN

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 14, 2009

Vol XXXI – N° 300 – Wednesday 14th JANUARY 2009

Gulf Daily News

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GULF DAILY NEWS’ (Dubai)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GULF DAILY NEWS’ (Dubai)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, COMMUNICATION INDUSTRIES, DIGITAL INDUSTRIES, DUBAI, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ELECTRIC / ELECTRONIC INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRIES, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, PUBLIC SECTOR AND STATE OWNED ENTERPRISES, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, RESTRUCTURING OF THE PUBLIC SECTOR, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

LLOYDS TSB PAYS £230M IN US FAKED RECORDS CASE (UK)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 12, 2009

Sunday 11 January 2009

by Richard Wachman – The Observer

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GUARDIAN’ (UK)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GUARDIAN’ (UK)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, CORRUPTION, CRIMINAL ACTIVITIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAL SCAMS, FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, FRAUD, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES, INDUSTRIES - USA, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, LYBIA, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, SUDAN, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, UNITED KINGDOM, USA | Leave a Comment »

65,000 TONS OF IRANIAN CRUDE ARRIVE ON DEFERRED PAYMENT – A SHIP CARRYING 65,000 TONS OF CRUDE OIL FROM IRAN ARRIVED AT THE PORT ON FRIDAY UNDER THE DEFERRED PAYMENT FACILITY (Pakistan)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 11, 2009

Sunday, 11 Jan, 2009 – 01:45 PM PST

by Aamir Shafaat Khan

PUBLISHED BY ‘DAWN’ (Pakistan)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘DAWN’ (Pakistan)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, PAKISTAN, PETROL, RECESSION, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

U.S., IRAN SHARE INTERESTS IN AFGHANISTAN: PETRAEUS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 11, 2009

January 10, 2009 Saturday – Muharram 12, 1430

Agence France-Presse

PUBLISHED BY ‘DAWN’ (Pakistan)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘DAWN’ (Pakistan)

Posted in DEFENCE TREATIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES - USA, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MILITARY CONTRACTS, PUBLIC SECTOR AND STATE OWNED ENTERPRISES, RECESSION, THE ARMS INDUSTRY, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, USA, WAR IN AFGHANISTAN, WEAPONS | Leave a Comment »

RELIANCE INDUSTRIES CEASES GASOLINE SALE TO IRAN (India)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 9, 2009

8 Jan 2009, 2005 hrs IST

PTI

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ECONOMIC TIMES’ (India)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ECONOMIC TIMES’ (India)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEM - USA, BANKRUPTCIES - USA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, GASOLINE, HOUSING CRISIS - USA, INDIA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, RECESSION, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, USA | Leave a Comment »

IRAN AND KUWAIT TO DEEPEN OIL SUPPLY CURBS TO ASIA

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 7, 2009

Wednesday January 7, 2009

Associated Press-Wire

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR'(Malaysia)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR'(Malaysia)

Posted in ASIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, KUWAIT, PETROL, RECESSION | Leave a Comment »

IRAN URGES ARABS TO ACT ON GAZA

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 31, 2008

December 30, 2008

Al Jazeera and agencies

PUBLISHED BY ‘ALJAZEERA’ (Qatar)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘ALJAZEERA’ (Qatar)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, CRIMINAL ACTIVITIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, ISRAEL, PALESTINE, RECESSION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN STRUGGLE, WEAPONS | Leave a Comment »

MAJLIS PRIORITIZES ECONOMIC REFORM PLAN – THE MAJLIS HAS DECIDED TO MAKE THE NATIONAL ECONOMIC REFORM PLAN A SINGLE URGENCY ISSUE ON THE PARLIAMENT’S AGENDA (Iran)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 31, 2008

News Code : TTime- 185966 – Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Tehran Times Political Desk

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIAL SUBSIDIES, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, PUBLIC SECTOR AND STATE OWNED ENTERPRISES, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, RESTRUCTURING OF THE PUBLIC SECTOR, STATE TARIFFS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

SANCTIONS DON’T STOP HEWLETT-PACKARD FROM SELLING IN IRAN

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 31, 2008

December 29, 2008

by Farah Stockman – The Boston Globe

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE INTERNATIONAL HERALD TRIBUNE’ (USA)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE INTERNATIONAL HERALD TRIBUNE’ (USA)

Posted in BANKRUPTCIES - USA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, DIGITAL INDUSTRIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, ELECTRIC / ELECTRONIC INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRIES, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES - USA, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, RECESSION, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, TRADE DEFICIT - USA, USA | Leave a Comment »

IRANIAN PRESIDENT TAKES A SHOT AT THE WEST IN A CHRISTMAS MESSAGE – MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD, IN A VIDEO FOR CHANNEL 4’S ‘ALTERNATIVE CHRISTMAS MESSAGE,’ OFFERS WARM GREETINGS BUT SAYS THE WEST’S BULLYING LEADERS AND THEIR POLICIES WOULD BE SHUNNED BY JESUS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 25, 2008

December 25, 2008

by Borzou Daragahi

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE L.A. TIMES’ (USA)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE L.A. TIMES’ (USA)

Posted in AUSTRALIA, BELGIUM, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, ENGLAND, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, FRANCE, GERMANY, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, ISRAEL, ITALY, NORWAY, PETROL, RECESSION, SAUDI ARABIA, SPAIN, THE EUROPEAN UNION, THE MEDIA (US AND FOREIGN), USA | Leave a Comment »

PROTON AIMS TO SELL 100,000 CAMPRO ENGINES IN IRAN

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 25, 2008

Thursday December 25, 2008

by Teh Eng Hock – The Star

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR’ (Malaysia)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR’ (Malaysia)

Posted in AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, RECESSION, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

TURKEY’S PRESIDENT SAYS IRAN, IRAQ COULD SUPPLY GAS FOR NABUCCO PIPELINE

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 17, 2008

12:31 PM EST, December 16, 2008

by Associated Press

PUBLISHED BY ‘NEWSDAY.COM’ (USA)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘NEWSDAY.COM’ (USA)

Posted in COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MACROECONOMY, NATURAL GAS, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, TURKEY | Leave a Comment »

OPEC CHIEFS HERALD MAJOR OUTPUT CUT TO REBUILD PRICES

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 16, 2008

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

by Agence France Presse (AFP)

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, LYBIA, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, RUSSIA, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

RUSSIA WARNS WEST NOT TO MEDDLE IN EX-SOVIET UNION

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 11, 2008

December 11, 2008

Associated Press

PUBLISHED BY ‘TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

MOSCOW (AP) – Russia’s foreign minister warned the West on Wednesday against meddling in its backyard, saying the U.S. and Sergey LavrovEuropean countries must not advance their interests in the former Soviet Union at Russia’s expense.

Sergey Lavrov told a group of foreign business leaders that Russia has no monopoly on relations with neighboring former Soviet republics, and said Moscow understands that the United States and European Union have legitimate interests in the region.

But, he said, the U.S. and EU must forge relations with former Soviet republics “through legal, understandable and transparent methods,” Lavrov said. “Behind-the-scenes meddling only creates a crisis situation. One must respect the people of these nations and give them the right to choose their own fate.”

Already long-deteriorating ties between Moscow and the West were badly damaged by Russia’s August war with Georgia, a small ex-Soviet republic that has enjoyed strong U.S. backing and is seeking NATO membership.

Lavrov gave no examples of alleged meddling. But the U.S. and Europe have been courting ex-Soviet republics as they vie with Russia for access to Central Asian and Caspian Sea energy resources and seek ties with nations close to sources of concern such as Iran and Afghanistan.

Also, Russian leaders have suggested the U.S. encouraged Georgia to launch an offensive that sparked the five-day war, and say Washington has pressed to bring Ukraine closer to NATO despite significant opposition among its people.

Lavrov stressed Russia’s opposition to U.S. missile defense plans and NATO expansion but indicated that Russia is eager for improved ties with the U.S. He suggested that it would be up to the administration of President-elect Barack Obama to make the first move.

“We are counting on the future administration of Barack Obama to confirm what he is now saying about the need to cooperate with Russia in fighting common threats — international terrorism and weapons proliferation,” Lavrov said.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

Posted in BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA -(DEC. 2008/JAN. 2009), COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES, DEFENCE TREATIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, GEORGIA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MILITARY CONTRACTS, NATO, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, RUSSIA, THE ARMS INDUSTRY, THE EUROPEAN UNION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, UKRAINE, USA, WEAPONS | Leave a Comment »

IRAN HAS NO NUCLEAR WEAPONS PROGRAM: EX-U.S. SPYMASTER – America’s just-retired No.2 intelligence official Tuesday defended a year-old estimate on Iran, saying he stood by its conclusion that Iran has not diverted its nuclear activities to a weapons program

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 11, 2008

December 11, 2008

Source: Washington Times

PUBLISHED BY ‘TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

Thomas Fingar, who stepped down Dec. 1 from the post of deputy director of national intelligence and as chairman THOMAS FINGARof the National Intelligence Council, said he also believed that Iran has not diverted low-enriched uranium produced at a facility at Natanz, 160 miles south of Tehran, to weapons use.

“I still stand by the judgments in that estimate,” Mr. Fingar told a small group of reporters, referring to the November 2007 report. “We’ve had other teams look at this. Everyone who has, has affirmed the judgments we made.”

Iran, as a signatory to the non-proliferation regime, says it wants to enrich uranium for civilian power plants.

Mr. Fingar, a former deputy assistant secretary of state for intelligence, said a decision to make a bomb is a political one that he does not think the Iranian government has made. “We stick with an estimate until we change it,” he said.

A member of the intelligence community for 38 years, Mr. Fingar was part of a team at the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) that THOMAS FINGARdoubted whether Iraq had a nuclear program before the U.S. invasion in 2003.

“INR got it less wrong” than other U.S. intelligence agencies, he said, but still thought that Iraq had biological and chemical weapons, which have not been found.

“The analysis was flawed, the underlying intelligence was bad, and the tradecraft was bad,” he said.

Mr. Fingar said the reorganization of intelligence agencies following that failure had improved the quality of intelligence collection and analysis by highlighting diverse views and improving standards for sourcing.

He said coordination among the nation’s 100,000 intelligence professionals, stretched across 16 agencies, had improved significantly.

“We are not broken, and we don’t need to be fixed,” he said, while conceding that the structure was still “far from perfect.”

Mr. Fingar has been advising the transition team of President-elect Barack Obama.

He said he plans to lecture next year at Stanford University, where he received a master’s degree and doctorate in political science, and might write a THOMAS FINGARbook.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

Posted in ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, RECESSION, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, USA | Leave a Comment »

DEUTSCHE POST CEO SEES SHORT RECESSION, ASIA EXPANSION

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 11, 2008

December 11, 2008

Tehran Times Political Desk

PUBLISHED BY ‘TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Deutsche Post chief executive Frank Appel said on Wednesday the firm will continue its Asian expansion and keep job cuts to a minimum outside the United States as it expects a short but sharp global recession.

“We are pretty confident that the recession will be deep but pretty short,” he said, predicting business and consumer confidence can recover as quickly as it had disappeared in recent weeks. “We don’t have to cut too many jobs.”

Appel said that Deutsche Post’s DHL unit, Europe’s largest express courier company, had invested around $2 billion in Asia in recent years, and “we will see similar numbers in coming years”.

DHL last month said it will halt U.S. domestic services and cut 9,500 jobs after failing to gain share in a market dominated by United Parcel Service and FedEx Corp.

FedEx on Monday warned that earnings for its fiscal year ending May 2009 will be lower than expected due to a global economic slump.

Appel, who spoke at a briefing on a global trade study commissioned by DHL, was more bullish about economic prospects, saying he expected the global economy to recover faster than most people thought.

According to the study by the Economist Intelligence Unit, trade between Asia and the West will shrink by about 4 percent in 2009 before recovering in 2010, recovering faster than cross-Atlantic traffic, which will likely remain in the doldrums until 2011.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

Posted in ASIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, CONSUMERS AND PSYCHOLOGICAL FACTORS, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRIES, FOREIGN POLICIES, GERMANY, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MACROECONOMY, RECESSION, SINGAPORE, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

RAFSANJANI CRITICIZES STATE BODIES FOR FAILING TO IMPLEMENT ARTICLE 44 (Iran)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 11, 2008

December 11, 2008

Tehran Times Political Desk

PUBLISHED BY ‘TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

TEHRAN — Expediency Council Chairman Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has criticized state bodies for failing to understand the obstacles preventing the implementation of Article 44 of the Constitution, which calls for the privatization of state companies.

The Majlis, the current administration, and even the Expediency Council have not acted properly in this regard, Rafsanjani told reporters here on Wednesday on the sidelines of a conference organized by basiji university students entitled Article 44, Obstacles and Solutions.

The EC chairman said all three branches of government should take responsibility for the implementation of Article 44, adding, “But we should make sure that the Majlis doesn’t pass laws contrary to Article 44.”

All of Iran’s major accomplishments were the result of the people’s participation, and if it hadn’t been for the people’s efforts, the Islamic Revolution wouldn’t have happened, Rafsanjani stated.

He asked, “Why can’t Iran make use of the people’s participation to build and administer the country, and why should Iran’s capital assets be transferred to Dubai? Why can’t Iran attract billions of Iranian nationals’ capital?”

Article 44 and the 20-Year Outlook Plan will pave the way to do so, he noted.

The 20-Year Outlook Plan defines a macro strategy for the country’s economic, social, and cultural development for the next 20 years.

He also acknowledged the basiji (volunteer) spirit and called on basijis to pursue the matter in an academic manner.

Meanwhile, Expediency Council Secretary Mohsen Rezaii told reporters on Wednesday on the sidelines of the Article 44, Obstacles and Solutions conference, “Article 44 states that the government shouldn’t interfere in the economy, but rather should guide it.”

There is no doubt that Iran has made significant progress in many spheres, but it is falling behind schedule in certain economic, scientific, and technological areas, he said.

The preparation of the Article 44 policies draft was a great step by the administration, which will pave the way for the implementation of Article 44, he noted.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘TEHRAN TIMES’ (Iran)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, MACROECONOMY, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

IRAN OIL OUTPUT OVER 4 MLN BPD

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 10, 2008

Monday, December 6th, 2008

by Michel Rocard

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ARAB TIMES’ (Kuwait)

TEHRAN, Dec 6, (RTRS): Iran is producing over 4 million barrels of crude per day (bpd), the head of the state oil firm was quoted as saying on Saturday, roughly 250,000 bpd more than an estimate provided by the country’s Opec governor. Iran’s representative to the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Mohammad Ali Khatibi, said on Thursday the Islamic Republic was pumping at around 3.8 million bpd and was complying fully with its share of the cartel’s oil supply cuts. But Seifollah Jashnsaz, managing director of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), said in comments carried by the official IRNA news agency on Saturday: “In view of Opec’s production cut that went into effect at the beginning of November, Iran’s current crude oil production stands between 4,050,000-4,080,000 barrels per day.”

A Reuters survey earlier this week put Iran’s output in November at 3.9 million bpd, a higher figure than the one given by Khatibi but lower than the output cited by Jashnsaz. The reason for the different figures for the crude output of Iran, Opec’s second-largest producer, was not clear and officials were not immediately available for comment. In his Dec. 4 comments to Reuters, Khatibi said Iran had cut 199,000 bpd as required under Opec’s October agreement to reduce supply by 1.5 million bpd. He said Iran was pumping at around 4 million bpd before the October cut.

Khatibi’s comments on compliance were at odds with industry estimates that Iran has met little of its pledge to reduce supply. Opec, source of more than a third of the world’s oil, meets in Algeria later this month to discuss how to halt oil’s fall of more than $100 from its July peak of over $147 a barrel as a global financial crisis hit energy demand in consumer nations. Iran’s Oil Minister Gholamhossein Nozari said last Sunday that the oil market was oversupplied by around 2 million bpd. Opec ministers meeting in Cairo on Nov. 29 deferred a decision on a new oil supply cut amid signs that Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies were demanding tighter adherence with previous restraints.

Flagged

Delegates in Cairo flagged Iran and Venezuela, who have both urged deeper Opec cuts, as sources of concern on quota compliance.

In Saturday’s IRNA report, Jashnsaz did not mention any figures about Iranian output cuts, but said Iran’s oil production capacity had reached 4.23 million bpd and expressed hope it would rise to 4.3 million by March next year.

Iran’s crude oil export revenue so far in the 2008-09 Iranian year stood at $61 billion, he said, adding its average exports during the year amounted to 2.35 million bpd.

He said output from the Darkhovin oil field, in Iran’s south-west, would increase by 60,000 bpd to 160,000 bpd by the end of the Iranian year that runs to March.

Echoing comments by another NIOC official this week, Jashnsaz said Iran would need around $160 billion for development projects within its oil and gas sector, saying it would have to rely on both domestic and foreign investment.

NIOC’s director of planning, Abdolmohammad Delparish, told a seminar on Thursday that Iran needs investment of that magnitude in the next five years in its oil and gas industry.

Iran is the world’s fourth largest oil producer, but despite sitting on the world’s second biggest gas reserves has yet to become a major gas exporter. Jashnsaz said gas output had risen this year by around 70 million cubic metres to 580 million.

Also:

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s state-owned oil company Petronas is not a partner in multi-billion dollar gas deals signed this week between a Malaysian company and the Iranian government, a top company official said on Wednesday.

“We are not aware of what it is all about; all I know is what I read in the media. I can confirm that it has nothing to do with Petronas,” Petronas chief executive officer Hassan Marican told reporters.

Iran’s state television reported on Tuesday that the country had signed gas deals worth $14 billion with Malaysia.

The deals involved a project to produce liquefied natural gas (LNG) and the development of two gas fields, state television said.

The ISNA news agency said the deals were signed on Monday with Malaysia’s SKS group, a private entity linked to Malaysian billionaire Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary.

It was not clear if the deals were related to an agreement signed in 2007, the news agency said.

SKS in December last year struck a $16 billion gas development contract with Iran, which boasts the world’s second largest gas reserves after Russia.

Under the 2007 deal, SKS will team up with the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) to develop the southern Golshan and Ferdows gas fields and build plants to produce LNG.

Separately, Hassan said Petronas has not yet finalised its investment in a LNG project in Iran.

“We have not finalised that, there is no further update on the LNG project,” said Hassan.

In July, Petronas said it could not come to a final decision on its investment in Iran’s Pars LNG project due to rising costs and because it had not finalised its discussion with the Iranians.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ARAB TIMES’ (Kuwait)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MALAYSIA, NUCLEAR ENERGY, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, RUSSIA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

IRAN TESTS NEW MISSILE FROM WARSHIP: REPORTS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 8, 2008

Sun Dec 7, 1:52 am ET

Reporting by Hashem Kalantari, writing by Edmund Blair

PUBLISHED BY ‘YAHOO NEWS’ (USA)

TEHRAN (Reuters) – Iran’s military test-fired a new surface-to-surface missile from a warship as part of exercises along a strategic shipping route, state media reported on Sunday.

Iran launched six days of naval war games on Tuesday in the Sea of Oman and the Gulf region amid tension with the United States and Israel, which have not ruled out military action if diplomacy fails to end a row over Tehran’s nuclear work.

Iran has said that, if pushed, it could close the Strait of Hormuz at the entrance to the Gulf and through which about 40 percent of the world’s traded oil passes.

“The surface-to-surface Nasr-2 missile was tested in the (Sea of) Oman operational region,” state radio reported, adding that the test took place on Saturday.

“The Nasr-2 was fired from a warship and hit its target at a distance of 30 km (19 miles) and destroyed it,” the official news agency IRNA said, adding it was the first test of the new, medium-range missile.

The West accuses Iran of seeking to build nuclear warheads, a charge Tehran denies. It insists that it wants to master nuclear technology to generate electricity so that it can export more of its huge oil and gas reserves.

Washington, which has its navy Fifth Fleet based in the Gulf Arab state of Bahrain, has pledged to keep shipping lanes open. Experts say Iran’s navy would be no match for U.S. technology but could still create havoc in the waterway.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘YAHOO NEWS’ (USA)

Posted in ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, EUROPE, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, RECESSION, THE ARMS INDUSTRY, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, USA, WAR EXERCISES | Leave a Comment »

SHARING THE RESPONSABILITY

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 7, 2008

DECEMBER 3-8, 2008

by Michael Levitin

PUBLISHED BY ‘NEWSWEEK’ – Print Edition – (USA)

He was Chief of Staff to Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, the leading voice behind 'A BIGGER BREAK' - Frank-Walter Steinmeier says the crisis forced the U.S. to leave behind its traditions - Photo by Hans-Christian Plambeck (Laif-Redux)Germany’s refusal to fight in Iraq. Now German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier is the Social Democratic Party candidate for chancellor in next year’s elections, running against the popular Christian Democrat incumbent, Angela Merkel. In his first major interview with the U.S. press, Steinmeier sat down with NEWSWEEK’s Michael Levitin to discuss German troop engagements in Afghanistan, Russia’s recent aggression, the global financial crisis and how Germany might work alongside the United States. Excerpts:

LEVITIN: The day after Barack Obama won the U.S. presidency, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev threatened to install missiles in Kaliningrad if Washington did not “rethink” its deployment of a NATO missile shield in Eastern Europe. Did Moscow’s latest show of aggression shift the dynamic between Russia and Europe? How should you respond- and what should Europe’s response be?

STEINMEIER: Medvedevs announcement the day after the elections was clearly the wrong signal at the wrong time. We have no illusions about Russia. In the last few years it has often proved itself a difficult partner. The question remains how to deal with this huge country in Europe’s immediate neighborhood; having to choose between containment versus engagement, I advocate the latter. We must try to develop relations with Russia that go beyond economic interests and contribute to increased stability and security. After all, it is in our own interest to make sure that a Russia that is looking for its own identity is politically and culturally anchored in die West.

LEVITIN: Do you see Germany as a middleman, acting as a buffer between Russia and the rest of Europe-perhaps at the moment even Russia’s closest EU ally?

STEINMEIER: Russia is aware of our uniquely close relationship with the United States. We are firmly embedded in NATO and the EU and thus we don’t aspire to play the role of a middleman. Together with our European partners we showed a strong and outspoken response to Russia’s role in the conflict in Georgia. I think Europe’s united voice no doubt contributed to the military conflict ending. Now the stabilization of the region as a whole has to continue, and for genuine stability we need Russian cooperation. As for energy links between the EU and Russia, the answer depends on which European country you talk to. But in general, Russia depends as much on Europe and America buying its goods as we rely on Russia supplying us with natural gas and oil. As far as Germany is concerned, it is little known in the United States that we have worked successfully for decades to diversify our suppliers of various forms of energy and fuels, with Russia but also Norway and Africa being important suppliers.

LEVITIN: You mentioned the conflict In Georgia. Should that country and Ukraine be Invited to Join NATO?

STEINMEIER: This is not a simple yes-or-no decision. With national elections looming, the domestic situation in Ukraine has changed, as has the situation in the Caucasus since the conflict broke out this summer. Yes, we remain committed to supporting and assisting these countries on the road ahead. But concerning the Membership Action Plan, Germany and other European governments continue to stand by their position.

LEVITIN: The most urgent U.S. foreign-policy question involving Germany, which Obama raised many times during his campaign, is Afghanistan and whether Germany will contribute more troops there to stabilize the south. How much is your country willing to sacrifice for this partnership, putting its soldiers into harm’s way?

STEINMEIER: I have spoken to Barack Obama twice, and from these exchanges I know that he sees Afghanistan in a very nuanced way. I feel we see eye to eye in our assessment that we’re facing a very difficult security situation, but that military means alone cannot bring about the necessary changes. Our approach has to be a comprehensive one, and contrary to what some people may say, Germany has played its part.

LEVITIN: In the north, certainly. But It’s in the south where the greatest violence has taken place, and where Obama’s asking for greater German participation.

STEINMEIER: We have shouldered our share of the military responsibility and we have also enlarged our engagement. We are about to increase our troops by 30 percent, to 4,500. We are participating in aerial surveillance across the whole of Afghanistan, including the south, and German radio engineers are also stationed in Kandahar. The German Air Force runs flights for all NATO countries throughout Afghanistan, again including the south. We took over the lead of the Quick Reaction Force in the north. And let us not forget that circumstances there have also changed; the north, too, has seen its share of armed opposition activities increasing in the last month. But our engagement in Afghanistan is about much more than military action. We have always said that we will only be successful if we succeed in helping rebuild the country and its economy. Civil reconstruction is the second important pillar of our engagement on the ground, and we’ll continue to increase our contribution in this area next year.

LEVITIN: Given the turmoil in Pakistan, what do you think the next steps forward ought to be?

STEINMEIER: The security of the whole region strongly depends on Pakistan. If we want to combat terrorism in Afghanistan, we have to succeed in stabilizing Pakistan politically and economically. This calls for a strengthened Pakistani commitment to combat terrorism, but it also calls for international assistance for this country. It needs a substantial loan from the IMF. We also need to be ready to help stabilize the country in a lasting way.

LEVITIN: On Iran, what realistic hopes do you see of bringing Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to the table and persuading him to give up Tehran’s nuclear ambitions? And how far will you be willing to push?

STEINMEIER: No doubt there is hope in the international community that after 29 years of standstill, a new approach may be possible. We all remember the reasons for the break-off of relations between the U.S. and Iran. Since then, U.S.-Iranian relations have also been a story of missed opportunities: when Washington signaled openness, Tehran wasn’t willing or able to respond in kind, and vice versa. I think it would be worthwhile trying to have direct talks, but the Iranians have to know it is up to them to prove they do not aspire to nuclear weapons-and that they’re willing to play a constructive role in the region. I have to admit I am skeptical, and can only express my hope that the leaders in Iran seize this opportunity.

LEVITIN: Turning to the financial crisis, the banks got a bailout. Now the automobile manufacturers are seeking the same thing. How do you see EU countries regaining their competition policy-and their legitimacy-after this?

STEINMEIER: I believe the politicians would have lost their legitimacy if they hadn’t acted. What we’re facing here is the very visible failure of the market. We had to make sure that the crisis in the financial markets does not lead to a total breakdown of the financial system as a whole. On both sides of the Atlantic, unconventional means were applied to manage the crisis. Honestly speaking, many of the measures taken in the U.S. seemed a bigger break with American tradition than can be said about European measures.

LEVITIN: How important is it that developing countries play a greater decision-making role In the future? For example, we saw hints of the G8 expanding into a G20 several weeks ago in Washington.

STEINMEIER: What is the most fundamental challenge the world is facing today? To my mind, it consists of integrating the emerging powers of the 21st century into a system of shared global responsibility. I am talk ing about countries like China and India, but also Muslim states such as Saudi Arabia. Can any of the global challenges we face be tackled without them? I don’t think so. That is why we have to make them stakeholders, and in that respect the recent financial summit in Washington was historic. To me it is obvious we cannot stop there.

PUBLISHED BY ‘NEWSWEEK’ (USA)

Posted in 'DOHA TALKS', AFGHANISTAN, AFRICA, BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA -(DEC. 2008/JAN. 2009), CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, DEFENCE TREATIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, EUROPE, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, G20, G8, GEORGIA, GERMANY, INDIA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES, INDUSTRIES - USA, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, ISLAM, MILITARY CONTRACTS, NATO, NATURAL GAS, NORWAY, PAKISTAN, PETROL, RECESSION, RUSSIA, SAUDI ARABIA, THE ARMS INDUSTRY, THE EUROPEAN UNION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, THE OCCUPATION WAR IN IRAQ, THE UNITED NATIONS, USA, WAR IN AFGHANISTAN, WARS AND ARMED CONFLICTS | 1 Comment »

MALAYSIA INVESTS $14B IN IRAN ENERGY

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 3, 2008

Thu, Dec 04, 2008

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE IRAN NEWS DAILY’

TEHRAN — Malaysia is investing up to 14 billion dollars in development of Golshan and Ferdosi fields as well as a liquefied Iranian Oil Minister Gholam Hussein Nozari arriving on March 05, 2008 for a meeting of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) at its Vienna headquarters. OPEC was set to leave oil output unchanged despite fresh calls by US President George W. Bush for an increase in supply to help bring down soaring energy prices.natural gas project, Minister of Oil Gholam-Hussein Nozari has said.

He added that meanwhile since 60-70% of the project’s value is finalized based on the price of goods; following the finalization of tender bids the final value of contract is specified.

“Iran and Malaysia have formed strategic relations and the two countries’ economic ties have been appropriate, to date. Meanwhile, with the conclusion of three cooperation deals and two memoranda of understanding, these economic ties will be reinforced and boosted more than ever.”

Meanwhile, in a meeting with the Iranian minister of oil, the former Malaysian premier Mahathir Mohammad, for his part, said that the two countries have reached agreements over development of a refinery in Malaysia with the capacity of 250,000 barrels; export of 120,000 barrels of CNG to Malaysia; development of a natural gas field in Iran; joint construction of refineries in Syria and Indonesia; and a number of other projects.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE IRAN NEWS DAILY’

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, GASOLINE, INDONESIA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MALAYSIA, PETROL, REFINERIES - PETROL/BIOFUELS, SYRIA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

NEW GAS EXPORT STRATEGIES (Iran)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 3, 2008

Thu, Dec 04, 2008

by Majid Karimi

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE IRAN DAILY’

The trilateral meeting between the leaders of Turkmenistan, Turkey and the Republic of Azerbaijan was held at It is difficult to predict the final stance of Turkmenistan toward the Nabucco pipeline, as nothing official has yet been made public.Turkmanbashi, Turkmenistan, on Friday.

Gurbanguly Berdymuhammedov, Abdullah Gul and Elham Aliev respectively discussed cooperation in the field of energy.

The meeting followed Berdymuhammedov’s visit to Germany and Austria, and negotiations for exporting gas to Europe. Of course, he has not made explicit comments regarding exports of gas to Europe via Nabucco or the trans-Caspian project.

The trans-Caspian project has not yet materialized due to ambiguities surrounding the Caspian legal regime, rift between Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan over a gas field and environmental problems.

Diversification

After the Turkmanbashi meeting, Financial Times reported Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan have reached an agreement about new strategies for exporting the Caspian Sea energy to consumer markets to curb the dependency of European states on Russian gas.

Based on this report, the European Union (EU) and the US have urged Turkmenistan to join the Nabucco pipeline project for transporting gas via Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey.

After meeting his Azeri counterpart, Berdymuhammedov said, “Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan, which are rich in hydrocarbon resources, have reached an agreement on diversifying the export routes for energy to the global markets.“

He emphasized that his country is keen on participating in the Nabucco pipeline project, but is under pressure for exporting its gas via Russia, which is the main market for Turkmen gas.

“Turkmenistan has signed a contract for supplying gas to China via the pipeline which is presently under construction,“ he said.

On the threshold of this trilateral meeting, Berdymuhammedov visited Germany and Austria during Nov. 13-19. In these visits, issues pertaining to the transport of Caspian Sea gas bypassing Russia were examined.

Manager of Azerbaijan’s Oil Projects Research Center Ilham Shaban noted that negotiations between the presidents of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Turkmenistan hints at more extensive cooperation among them in the energy sector than the Nabucco project alone.

Future meetings are not expected to focus on the gas project for building a pipeline through the Caspian seabed because at the presidential level, projects in their preliminary stages are not examined.

“So far, a few meetings have been held between representatives of Turkey and Turkmenistan in which the import of electricity and transport of gas via Iran were discussed. But, the last case did not materialize,“ he said.

The Azeri official noted that till now, no trilateral meeting was held between the leaders of Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Turkey.

“I should mention a similar case regarding how things proceeded regarding energy cooperation between Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. Since November 2002, negotiations took place between Baku and Astaneh at different levels. This eventually led to an intergovernmental agreement between Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan regarding oil transport via the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline. Hence, the meeting in Turkmenistan is another step to this end,“ he said.

Since the Commonwealth of Independent States gained their independence in 1991, Azerbaijan has had good economic ties with Turkmenistan and Turkey.

“I personally believe that in future negotiations between the presidents of these countries, more issues will be examined,“ he said.

Shaban further said it is difficult to predict the final stance of Turkmenistan toward the Nabucco pipeline, as nothing official has yet been made public, except a communiquŽ expressing Turkmenistan’s desire to diversify its gas supply.

“Interestingly enough, it has been mentioned that gas will be transported to China from fields located above Amudarya, from northern Dolatabad to Russia via the pipeline alongside the Caspian Sea and whatever is found in the western part of Turkmenistan will be transported to the West,“ he said.

It seems that Turkmenistan has determined, after 17 years of independence, where and how gas should be transported in a viable manner.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE IRAN DAILY’

Posted in CENTRAL BANKS, CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, EUROPE, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, GERMANY, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, KAZAKHSTAN, NATURAL GAS, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, RUSSIA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, TURKEY, TURKMENISTAN, UZBEKISTAN | Leave a Comment »

IRAN STAGES WAR GAMES IN PERSIAN GULF

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 3, 2008

News number: 8709131608 18:12 – 2008-12-03 – Defence

PUBLISHED BY ‘FARS NEWS AGENCY’ (Iran)

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian naval forces started five days of war games in the Persian Gulf and the strategic Strait of Hormuz.

“The aim of this maneuver is to increase the level of readiness of Iran’s naval forces and also to test and to use domestically-made naval weaponry,” Admiral Qasem Rostamabadi said.

The maneuver started yesterday with the deployment of troops in and around the strategic Straight of Hormoz and the troops officially started their drills on Wednesday.

The naval maneuvers would cover an area of 50,000 square miles, including the Sea of Oman off Iran’s southern coast.

“In this six-day long maneuver there will be more than 60 combat vessel units,” Admiral Habibollah Sayyari, commander of the navy, said.

They would include destroyers, missile-equipped battleships, submarines, special-operations teams, helicopters, and fighter planes, he said.

Iran often stages exercises or tests weapons to show its determination to counter any attack by the United States or Israel against its nuclear sites.

Israel and its close ally the United States accuse Iran of seeking a nuclear weapon, while they have never presented any corroborative document to substantiate their allegations. Both Washington and Tel Aviv possess advanced weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear warheads.

Iran vehemently denies the charges, insisting that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only. Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry.

Speculation that Israel could bomb Iran has mounted since a big Israeli air drill in June. In the first week of June, 100 Israeli F-16 and F-15 fighters reportedly took part in an exercise over the eastern Mediterranean and Greece, which was interpreted as a dress rehearsal for a possible attack on Iran’s nuclear installations.

Iran has, in return, warned that it would target Israel and its worldwide interests in case it comes under attack by the Tel Aviv.

A US attack on the Syrian village of Sukkariyah on October 26, has also raised speculation about the likelihood of a US unilateral strike on the Islamic Republic.

The United States has also always stressed that military action is a main option for the White House to deter Iran’s progress in the field of nuclear technology.

Iran has warned it could close the strategic Strait of Hormoz if it became the target of a military attack over its nuclear program.

Strait of Hormoz, the entrance to the strategic Persian Gulf waterway, is a major oil shipping route.

An Iranian naval commander last week said the country’s navy could strike an enemy well beyond its shores and as far away as Bab al-Mandab, the southern entrance to the Red Sea that leads to the Suez Canal.

Meantime, a recent study by the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS), a prestigious American think tank, has found that a military strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities “is unlikely” to delay the country’s program.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘FARS NEWS AGENCY’ (Iran)

Posted in ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, THE ARMS INDUSTRY, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, USA, WAR EXERCISES | Leave a Comment »

CHINA AND IRAN SWITCH TO GOLD

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 24, 2008

November 24, 2008 – 6:17 am

by daily.pk

Gold rallied sharply Thursday, and is rallying again at the time of this writing on Friday — it’s now Assistant to the President of SINOPEC Group, Zhou Baixiu (2nd L), and Iran's Deputy Oil Minister in charge of International affairs, Hossein Noghrehkar Shirazi (4th L), exchange the agreement protocols during an official ceremony in Tehran December 9, 2007 - Agencies
broken above the significant resistance range of 740-750, and is currently testing the $800 level. While the technical outlook on the daily chart still looks a bit bearish for gold, some major fundamental news of late suggests the bull market may be ready to resume.

Consider:

– Iran recently switched to gold reserves.

– China is massively increasing its gold reserves.

– Perth mint, one of the most prominent gold mints in Australia, has suspended orders.

– Prominent investment strategist John Embry has warned that December delivery contracts of gold may fail — this would expose gold scarcity and send prices upwards.

The China and Iran situation is particularly interesting; their decision to switch to gold reserves suggests a reluctance to hold US dollars and US Treasuries. This would increase the likelihood that deficit spending would prove to be inflationary, as it would need to be paid for via an expansion of the money supply. Moreover, while it is probably too early to say for sure, this could be the beginning of the world market making a run on the US dollar, a scenario which many dollar bears, most notably Peter Schiff, have come to expect in light of the rising deficit spending and the very weak fundamentals underlying the US economy.

I have viewed gold as a key element of any long-term portfolio, and continue to do so.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘PAK ALERT PRESS’ (Pakistan)

Posted in CENTRAL BANKS, CHINA, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FOREIGN POLICIES, GOLD, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MACROECONOMY, RECESSION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | 4 Comments »

TURKEY TO INVEST $12 BILLION IN IRAN

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 20, 2008

20 Nov 2008, 1544 hrs IST

AGENCIES

TEHRAN: Turkey will invest $12 billion in Iran’s Pars offshore gas field, said Turkish Energy Minister Hilmi Guler.

“Turkey will invest $12 billion on developing phases of South Pars offshore gas field in southern Iran and construction of gas pipeline from Assalouyeh to Turkish border,” Hilmi Guler said yesterday.

Referring to the agreement signed by Iran’s Oil Minister Gholam Hussein Nozari and Guler in Tehran, Guler termed the agreement as vital.

“We will implement all bilaterally inked agreement,” the Turkish minister said.

Iran and Turkey inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) according to which Turkey will invest in developing phases 22, 23 and 24 of Iran’s South Pars gas field and will buy 50 per cent of its produced gas when the project is completed.

As per the MoU, Turkmenistan’s gas will be transferred from Iran to Turkey and Iran will pipe its gas to Europe through Turkey.

Iran will transfer 35 billion cubic meters of Turkmen gas to Turkey annually.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE ECONOMIC TIMES’ (India)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, NATURAL GAS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, TURKEY | Leave a Comment »

SEN. CLINTON’S VIEWS ON U.S. FOREIGN POLICY ISSUES

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 17, 2008

Saturday November 15, 2008

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Sen. Hillary Clinton has emerged as a candidate for U.S. secretary of state – SENATOR HILLARY CLINTONthe top diplomat in the administration of President-elect Barack Obama, who defeated her for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Here are some views on foreign policy issues expressed by Clinton, wife of former President Bill Clinton.

IRAQ

“Ending the war in Iraq is the first step toward restoring the United States’ global leadership,” Clinton wrote a year ago in an article in Foreign Affairs magazine. U.S. troops had to be brought home safely and stability restored to the region, she said.

But on the campaign trail, Clinton was more reluctant than Obama to commit to a firm timetable for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq. She refused to apologize for her 2002 Senate vote authorizing the war, but did say she would like to have that vote back to do over.

AFGHANISTAN, PAKISTAN AND AL QAEDA

During the campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, Clinton, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said the United States should focus more on improving security in Afghanistan. She has called for greater U.S. troop deployments there. She also has suggested a U.S. envoy who could shuttle between the leaders of Afghanistan and Pakistan to help them in their efforts against a resurgent Taliban and al Qaeda presence in their countries.

IRAN

A big question for Obama’s secretary of state will be how to approach Iran. The Bush administration, which accuses Iran of seeking to build a nuclear bomb and helping militant groups in Iraq, has generally HILLARY RODHAM CLINTONshunned contacts with Tehran.

During the Democratic presidential primary campaign, Clinton charged that Obama’s willingness to meet leaders of Iran, Syria and North Korea was evidence of his naivete about foreign policy. She has threatened to “obliterate” Iran if it uses nuclear weapons against Israel.

But Clinton also has argued for engaging Iran, Syria and other countries of the region in talks about the future of Iraq. And one of her top foreign policy advisors, Richard Holbrooke, a former assistant secretary of state, suggested recently that U.S. contacts with Iran should start through private and confidential channels to determine if there is a basis for continuing.

MIDDLE EAST

Clinton stresses the need for Arab-Israeli peace, but is considered a favorite of the pro-Israel lobby in the United States. She says the fundamentals are a Palestinian state in Gaza and the West Bank in return for a declaration that the conflict is over, recognition of Israel’s right to exist, guarantees of Israeli security, diplomatic recognition of Israel and normalization of its relations with Arab states.

“U.S. diplomacy is critical in helping to resolve this conflict,” she said in her article in Foreign Affairs in November-December 2007. She said the United States should help get Arab support for a Palestinian leadership that is willing to engage in a dialogue with the Israelis.

RUSSIA AND ARMS CONTROL

“I think she would probably be tough-minded toward Russia,” said Kim Holmes, vice president of foreign and defense policy studies at the Heritage Foundation. “She has a reputation of being tough-minded generally, she is known and respected for that.”

Clinton has however criticized the Bush administration’s “obsessive” focus on “expensive and unproven missile defense technology” — one of the major points of contention recently in the U.S. relationship with Russia.

She favors further reducing U.S. and Russian nuclear arsenals, and also favors U.S. Senate approval of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

CHINA AND NORTH KOREA

Clinton has said the U.S. relationship with China will be the most important bilateral relationship in the world this century. Noting China’s support was important in reaching a multilateral deal to disable North Korea’s nuclear facilities, she says “we should build on this framework to establish a northeast Asian security regime.”

TRADE

Like Obama, Clinton has said the United States should either renegotiate or “opt out” of the North American Free Trade Agreement that was reached with Canada and Mexico during her husband’s administration. She also has called for a “timeout” from new trade agreements and a top-to-bottom review of trade policy.

Copyright © 2008 Reuters

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR’ (Malaysia)

Posted in AFGHANISTAN, AL QAEDA, CHINA, COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, HUMAN RIGHTS, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, IRAQ, ISRAEL, LEBANON, MIDDLE EAST, NORTH KOREA, PAKISTAN, PALESTINE, RUSSIA, SYRIA, THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN STRUGGLE, THE OCCUPATION WAR IN IRAQ, USA, WAR IN AFGHANISTAN, WARS AND ARMED CONFLICTS | Leave a Comment »

OPEC REDUX: RESPONDING TO THE RUSSIAN-IRANIAN GAS CARTEL

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 15, 2008

Published: November 14, 2008

Ariel Cohen (Middle East Times) by Ariel Cohen (Middle East Times) (*)

MOSCOW – Steadily and stealthily, a natural gas cartel has emerged over the last seven years. On Ariel Cohen, the usually obnoxious 'scarecrow' with a PhD ...Oct. 21 in Tehran, the Gas Exporting Countries’ Forum (GECF) agreed to form a troika which will direct the future cartel. Russia, Iran, and Qatar announced they will form a yet-unnamed group “to coordinate gas policy.” The troika will meet to coordinate and control close to two-thirds of the world’s gas reserves and a quarter of its gas production.

Russia prefers to coordinate energy policies with Tehran, recognizing that together they control roughly 20 percent of the world’s oil reserves and about half of global gas reserves, offering tremendous geo-economic power.

The United States should create an international coalition of energy consumers to oppose energy cartels. The U.S. Congress should also allow energy exploration in the Arctic, the Rocky Mountains, and along the continental shelves and expand cooperative gas ties with Canada.

Russia’s Global Gas Strategy

In the tight global energy market, Russia clearly appreciates the bargaining power that its energy resources provide, as it attempts to control energy exports from the New Independent States, such as Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Russia also has strengthened its ties to Iran, Venezuela, Libya, and other energy exporters. Recently, Moscow also launched a “charm offensive” on OPEC.

Russia is playing a sophisticated game to maximize its advantage as the leading gas producer with the largest reserves on the planet as well as the second largest oil exporter.

Russia’s approach was gradualist. Moscow had never openly shown enthusiasm about a gas cartel but waited for an opportunity to launch one. Yet, the cartel reportedly was a brainchild of the Russian prime minister and former president, Vladimir Putin.

Russia’s approach was also stealthy. Instead of announcing the cartel prematurely and spooking consumer countries, it quietly put the component parts into place. Until the Tehran declaration, Russia was able to appear reasonable.

At the Doha meeting in April, members of the GECF agreed to discuss dividing the consumer markets between them, particularly in Europe. Russia and Algeria are already major players there, and Iran may join them in the next decade. This will clearly challenge the European Union’s energy liberalization and gas deregulation policy, which took effect on July 1.

Geopolitical Clout

The troika and GECF members are planning to “reach strategic understandings” on export volumes, schedules of deliveries, and the construction of new pipelines. They plan to explore and develop gas fields and coordinate startups and production schedules. Despite protestations to the contrary, the GECF has all the trappings of a nascent cartel, and the troika includes its founding members. These founders will expand cooperation beyond their relationship through the GECF and drag other gas producers with them.

The new group will provide its three leaders with greater geopolitical advantage. If this new cartel expands, Russia and Iran will gain clout over Eurasian gas suppliers, such as Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan.

Major gas producers such as Iran, Russia, Qatar, Turkmenistan, Brunei, and Venezuela have one feature in common: a democracy deficit. All three members of the new cartel share this dubious quality. Just like OPEC, the gas cartel will be a force that can be used to challenge and possibly weaken market–based democracies through energy prices and wealth transfer. Such a cartel may cut deals with undemocratic large-scale consumers, such as China, while forcing the West to pay full price.

Coordinated Global Action Needed

The U.S. George W. Bush administration barely reacted to the Tehran and Doha meetings. Officials express concern, but only in private. The European Commission merely stated that it opposed price-fixing cartels in principle.

As the case of OPEC demonstrates, closing markets to competition, promoting national oil companies, and limiting production results in limited supply and higher oil prices. Gas will not be different.

What the U.S. Can Do

The United States should open its vast natural gas resources onshore and offshore to further exploration and production and encourage its neighbors in Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean to do the same.

The next administration should work with the European Union, Japan, China, India, and other countries to prevent the cartelization of the gas sector. This can be accomplished through cooperation with the International Energy Agency, which China and India should be invited to join, and by applying anti-trust legislation worldwide against state-owned companies that are actively involved in cartel-like behavior in energy markets.

Finally, the United States should work closely with those within GECF who oppose Russian-Iranian domination, including Azerbaijan, Canada, the Netherlands, and Norway. The National Security Council and the National Economic Council should take the lead in developing this policy. Unless buyer solidarity is translated into action, energy consumers and economic growth will suffer worldwide.

(*) – Ariel Cohen, Ph.D., is senior research fellow in Russian and Eurasian Studies and International Energy Security in the Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies, a division of the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for International Studies, at The Heritage Foundation.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘MIDDLE EAST TIMES’ (Egypt)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FUELS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, LYBIA, NATURAL GAS, OPEC, PETROL, QATAR, RUSSIA, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE EUROPEAN UNION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, VENEZUELA | Leave a Comment »

‘GAS TROIKA’ PLANS LNG JOINT VENTURE, PAPER SAYS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 14, 2008

November 13, 2008

by Eric Watkins – Oil Diplomacy Editor

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 13 – Russia’s state-owned OAO Gazprom, Qatar Liquefied Gas Co. Ltd., and PETRON - GASOLINE STATION - FUEL - PETROLEUM - OIL - KEROSENE - DIESELNational Iranian Oil Co. plan to establish a joint venture to produce gas from Iran’s South Pars field and liquefy it at Qatar’s Ras Laffan.

Each founder will get 30% in the project and the remaining 10% will go to the trader, probably to China’s CNPC or Korean Kogas, according to a report in Moscow’s Kommersant newspaper.

Participation by Qatar—a key US ally in the region — will level political risks triggered by the sales of Iranian gas, experts told the paper.

The plans are to set up the gas production infrastructure in South Pars, lay a pipeline across the Persian Gulf to Qatar, and construct an LNG facility at Ras Laffan.

The Kommersant report came as a Russian delegation led by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin arrived in Doha, Qatar, for talks with Qatari and Iranian officials on cooperation in natural gas exports.

Ahead of the meeting, Putin sought to allay the fears of gas consumers who viewed a meeting in Tehran last month as the start of a process that would eventually lead to the formation of an OPEC-like group of natural gas exporters.

At the time, Alexey Miller, chairman of OAO Gazprom’s management committee, said their discussions “may contribute greatly to developing the agenda for the Gas Exporting Countries Forum…,” which could be rapidly transformed “into a permanent organization promoting steady and reliable fuel supplies around the globe (OGJ Online, Oct. 24, 2008).”

Following the announcement, the European Union — Russia’s biggest gas customer — warned it could reconsider its energy policy if Russia, Iran, and Qatar formed a “gas OPEC.”

Putin said Nov. 11 that there were “absolutely no grounds for such fears,” adding, “We are not establishing a cartel; we are not striking any cartel deals.”

Putin said, “Energy producers, as well as consumers, have the right to— and in my view must —coordinate their decisions, exchange information, and do their best to ensure uninterrupted hydrocarbon supplies on global markets.”

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘OIL & GAS JOURNAL’

Posted in CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, EUROPE, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, NATURAL GAS, QATAR, RUSSIA, SOUTH KOREA, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE EUROPEAN UNION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

PUTIN SAYS RUSSIA IS NOT SEEKING TO FORM GAS CARTEL IN COORDINATING WITH OTHER EXPORTERS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 12, 2008

Last update: November 11, 2008 – 4:07 PM

Associated Press

MOSCOW – Russian President Vladimir Putin sought to ease fears about his planned talks with other VLADIMIR PUTINnatural gas exporters, saying Tuesday that Russia was not forming a gas cartel.

Putin plans Wednesday to hold cooperation talks with Iran and Qatar, which together with Russia account for nearly a third of world natural gas exports.

“We know about the concerns and even fears expressed by some energy consumer countries,” Putin said after a meeting with Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif. “There are absolutely no grounds for such fears. We are not establishing a cartel, we are not striking any cartel deals.”

Russia, Iran and Qatar agreed last month to coordinate their actions more closely, raising concerns that Moscow could expand its influence over energy markets. The European Commission said the European Union would have to rethink its energy policy if the three form an OPEC-style natural gas cartel.

Nazif also met with the chairman of Russia’s state-controlled gas monopoly OAO Gazprom, Alexei Miller, and they agreed that both nations favor the creation of a permanent structure bringing together gas exporters, the company said.

Putin insisted that the goal of closer cooperation was to provide stable supplies.

“Energy producers, as well as consumers, have the right to — and in my view must — coordinate their decisions, exchange information and do their best to ensure uninterrupted hydrocarbon supplies on global markets,” he said.

Putin said Monday that Russia — the world’s second-largest oil exporter but not an OPEC member — should assume a greater role in influencing oil prices.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR TRIBUNE’ (USA)

Posted in COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, EGYPT, ENERGY, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, NATURAL GAS, QATAR, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

OIL UP OVER 4 PCT, TOPS $64 ON CHINA STIMULUS, G20

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 10, 2008

by Fayen Wong – Reuters – (Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

Published: Sunday, November 09, 2008

PERTH (Reuters) – Oil leapt more than $3 to over $64 a barrel on Monday, fueled by top exporter Saudi An oil pump is seen on the shore near Santa Cruz del Norte, Cuba June 5, 2008. REUTERS - Claudia DautArabia’s plans to cut December supplies to Asia, a weaker dollar and hopes that global economies’ plans to lift growth could avert recession.

Saudi Arabia has told refiners in Asia it would cut December supplies by 5 percent, providing the most visible evidence yet that it is adhering to OPEC’s agreement last month to reduce output.

U.S. light crude for December delivery rose $2.96, or 4.55 percent, to $64.00 a barrel by 7:59 p.m. EST, after rising as much as $3.26. London Brent crude rose $1.85 to $59.20.

The proposals made at the G20 meeting and the relief package out of China really helped the markets this morning,” said Mark Pervan, a senior commodities analyst at the Australia & New Zealand Bank.

“The message over the weekend was supportive and it is clear that governments around the world will do all it takes to prevent a deep global recession.”

At the G20 group’s annual meet in Brazil, finance ministers and central bank governors representing 90 percent of the world’s economy vowed to take all necessary measures to get financial markets back on their feet and counter the credit crisis.

China went a step further and launched a huge stimulus plan on Sunday worth nearly $600 billion, kicking off what could be a round of big spending or interest rate cuts by leading economies to stave off a recession in many countries.

China’s solid government spending package to boost domestic demand is “good news” that will help the global economy ride out the financial crisis, the International Monetary Fund’s managing director said.

The U.S. currency weakened broadly after data on Friday showed the U.S. economy shed more jobs than expected in October. But the yen fell against the dollar and euro on Monday as Asian shares were lifted by strong Wall Street gains and by China’s launch of its huge stimulus plan.

Oil lost nearly 10 percent last week and dipped below $60 the previous week, its lowest since March 2007, after a string of dismal economic data from the United States sharpened fears of a protracted global recession and growing U.S. energy stockpiles underscored falling demand in the world’s top energy consumer.

Government data on Friday showed U.S. employers cut payrolls by 240,000 in October. In addition, the Labor Department said the U.S. unemployment rate shot up to 6.5 percent from 6.1 percent in September, the highest since March 1994.

Oil’s tumble from July highs has already spurred OPEC to rein in supply from November 1, and some members of the cartel are talking of reducing production further.

OPEC will cut oil output again if the trend toward lower prices and slowing demand growth are unchanged when the group meets in December, Iran’s OPEC Governor Mohammad Ali Khatibi told Reuters on Sunday, adding to comments by Venezuela’s oil minister Rafael Ramirez last week that OPEC should act again to reduce output by at least 1 million barrels per day (bpd).

Iran’s Khatibi added that the credit crisis and economic slowdown could shave as much as 3 million bpd from global crude demand.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘OTTAWA CITIZEN’ (Canada)

Posted in ASIA, CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, DOLLAR (USA), ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, G20, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, OPEC, PETROL, SAUDI ARABIA, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA | Leave a Comment »

SPEAKING FREELY – The impending strike on Iran

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 4, 2008

Nov 1, 2008

by David Fink

Speaking Freely is an Asia Times Online feature that allows guest writers to have their say.

Fact. We are in the beginning of a worldwide recession that will last until at least late 2009. This recession will be worse than the “light” recession of 2001-2002, and the “serious” recession of 1990-1991. In scope, it will be a “severe” recession like the one in 1982.

Fact. People will start saving for the first time in a generation. The savings rate will go from a negative 1% to 8-9%.

Fact. Without increases in consumer spending, the government will have to spend trillions of dollars to restart the economy. The United States is experiencing unprecedented levels of government, corporate, and individual debt. It cannot go through a period of inflation without its economy collapsing. Policymakers know this and they will do anything in their power to prevent deflation and re-inflate the economy. The Treasury and Federal Reserve have literally been printing money in order to float us out of the current crisis in an ocean of liquidity.

This policy has been working for over two decades. However, to inject this much liquidity into the system will create tremendous downward pressure on the dollar. If the dollar falls apart, the United States will no longer have the ability to fix its problems with the printing press.

How will we know if we will be able to get out of this recession in one piece? We will need to know if, a) we are experiencing deflation or inflation, and b) if the dollar is strong enough to keep reproducing itself at this rate.

The price of gold will tell us what type of monetary environment we are in. If gold stays put at $700, or begins to go down from here, then we are in a deflationary period. For the United States to be going through deflation when everybody in this country is over their heads in debt is dangerous. For these two problems to occur during an economic downturn where unemployment could hit 10% is potentially catastrophic. Over the past month, major downturns in the stock market indices have been preceded by huge drops in the price of gold.

The US dollar index will tell us if we can still use the same medicine traditionally prescribed by Alan Greenspan. If the dollar index holds above 70, we can print our way out of this recession. If the index breaks 70, then the dollar could be in trouble. Look for higher interest rates, inflation, and the government’s ability to raise debt will be hampered – this could kill future growth.

Gold and the US dollar index have become the two vital signs of the global economy.

If there is a run on the dollar, the US will not be able to borrow enough money to fight two wars, bail out the whole financial system, and initiate a spending program that will end the current recession. Policymakers will have to make difficult choices. This presents a once-in-a-lifetime “opportunity” for President George W Bush.

The smart money has chosen Senator Barack Obama as our next president. If we don’t have a currency strong enough to borrow the necessary funds to do everything, I think Obama will try to pull out of Iraq. Given that we are winning the war in Iraq and have pledged to significantly draw down troop numbers in the next couple of years, how hard would it be for Obama to declare victory and pull out now? Politically, this would signal a message to the rest of the world that America has changed course and is ready to work with everybody else.

But that’s not why Obama would pull out.

He won’t do it for political reasons – he will do it for economical ones. A beaten-down dollar means that spending in one place will mean less money somewhere else. Up until now, Americans have been able to spend in one area, and borrow to finance another one. If president Obama doesn’t end the war, monies that are needed at home will not materialize. We will hear stories about how the everyday American can’t afford basic health care while we are still fighting in Iraq.

The popularity Obama has enjoyed as a candidate will soon turn to hostility if the average American family had to suffer because he didn’t keep his promise to end the war. His decision will be due to economic reality – but it will have very dangerous political, military, and national security implications. Most of all, George W Bush’s entire legacy will be wiped away.

Don’t you think the Bush administration is pondering this possibility?

A president is definitely most powerful when he is a lame duck who is ceding power to an opposing party. If you are the outgoing president, or a member of the outgoing administration, you are thinking one thing: if Obama wins, November and December would be ideal time to attack Iran.

Consider this:

Bush is a lame duck. He won’t be around to have to deal with any fallout from such a move.

Obama will never attack Iran. Four years from now, we will not be able to stop Iran from completing work on their bomb. Bush has always had a big sense of destiny in his leadership. If he believes that he is the only one who can save the world, he may decide to do it.

Obama can fix the damage. The Arab world loves Obama. They view him as a fellow Muslim. After Bush protects the nations of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Iraq, Kuwait, Dubai, Qatar and half of Europe from nuclear disaster, and these nations openly proclaim their hatred for him, Obama can come to power and spend his first 100 days in office “apologizing” for Bush’s “mistakes”. The US will literally get a “free pass” for this in the eyes of the world.

When oil was at $147 a barrel, there was no way the Bush administration was going to risk spiking it to $250 – especially with a presidential election coming up. Come November, oil will be trading at $70 per barrel. A strike on Iran may raise the price temporarily to its 52-week high of $150 per barrel. The election will be over and politically, the Bush administration will have nothing to lose.

An attack on Iran will force the American military to stay in Iraq for a longer period of time. The immediate Iranian response to an American attack will be to escalate the war. They will “green light” Shi’ite groups in Southern Iraq to go back to war with American forces. They will finance and encourage terrorist groups around the world to hit America wherever and whenever. They will broaden the war in the region by inciting Syria, Hamas in Gaza, and Hezbollah in Lebanon to attack Israel – assuming they don’t fire on Israel themselves. America will have to stay at least an extra 2-3 years until things “quiet down” again. This new situation will also insure that the national security infrastructure created after September 11, and nurtured throughout the Bush administration, will not lose any of its powers during the new administration.

Members of the Bush administration, who left their jobs in the private sector, will soon be returning to the private sector. They all came from the oil industry and they want to make sure that they will be taken care of. Those 433,000 stock options in Halliburton outgoing Vice President Dick Cheney put in a trust before he assumed office – he gets them back January 20. It would be in his best interests if the shares of these companies were trading higher. That goes for the rest of the Bush administration – they will all want to make sure that the heads of the oil industry – their next employers – are happy. Obama has promised to tax the oil industry next year. An attack on Iran will drive oil prices up so that the additional revenue generated by these companies will, at a least, make up for any new tax obligations.

The aftershocks of the US attack will keep oil prices in triple digits and reinitiate the debate about drilling for offshore oil. A higher price will give big oil new political clout in developing oil fields in areas considered environmentally unsound. A heightened global tension means that the next administration will be forced to maintain current government outlays to the defense industry.

The final three points will force Obama to continue the core policies of the Bush administration whether he likes it or not. If you are viewing the world from the point of view of the Bush administration, you see a lot of very big arguments for attacking Iran now.

From this we can come to a very simple conclusion: America will either attack Iran in the next two and a half months, or it never will.

David Fink is the editor-in-chief of the daily investment newsletter www.realwealthrecon.com. Throughout 2008, his RWR Investment Portfolio has outperformed the market indices by 20%, and the average hedge fund by 3%.

Speaking Freely is an Asia Times Online feature that allows guest writers to have their say. Please click here if you are interested in contributing.

(Copyright 2008 Asia Times Online (Holdings) Ltd. All rights reserved.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘ASIA TIMES’

Posted in INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, USA, WARS AND ARMED CONFLICTS | Leave a Comment »

CRISE MANTERÁ PETRÓLEO EM BAIXA, DIZ PRESIDENTE DA OPEP – Previsão de Chakib Khelil leva em conta abalo nos mercados e baixa do dólar frente a outras moedas

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 2, 2008

02/11/2008 | 16h41min

O ministro da Energia argelino e presidente em exercício da Organização dos Países Exportadores de Chakib Khelil - Algerian Energy and Mines Minister, gestures during a press conference at the governmental newspaper El-Moudjahid's press center in the center of Algiers 20/10/2007. Khelil, who is the vice president of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), said, then, that petrol prices would stay high until the second trimester of 2008Petróleo (Opep), Chakib Khelil, disse neste domingo que os preços da commodity podem continuar sua tendência de baixa caso persista a crise financeira e o dólar não se recupere frente a outras divisas.

— Tudo depende da situação econômica mundial. Caso continue se deteriorando fica claro que a demanda de petróleo percebida pelo mercado diminuirá, o que manterá a tendência de baixa — disse Khelil a uma rádio argelina.

No entanto, o ministro não descartou que o preço do petróleo, estabelecido em dólares, possa voltar a subir “se a moeda americana se debilitar em relação a outras”.

— É o impacto de todos estes elementos o que vai decidir o preço do petróleo a curto prazo — assinalou.

Em todo caso, o presidente da Opep previu que os preços se recuperarão em dois ou três anos, “já que há um desinvestimento e muitos projetos (no setor petrolífero) foram suspensos”.

Segundo ele, a decisão da Opep adotada na última reunião de Viena de cortar a produção “vai precisar de muito tempo para ter seus efeitos” sobre o preço do petróleo, já que o mercado não integrou ainda a redução da oferta.

Khelil explicou que vários países, entre eles Argélia, Emirados Árabes, Irã e Nigéria, anunciaram já o corte de sua produção e que se espera que os demais membros da Opep informem a seus clientes “para avaliar o impacto no mercado da decisão adotada em Viena”.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘PORTAL CLIC RBS’ (Brasil)

Posted in AFRICA, ALGERIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, CURRENCIES, DOLLAR (USA), ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, NATURAL GAS, NIGERIA, OPEC, PETROL, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES | Leave a Comment »

IRAN URGES INDIA TO COMMIT TO GAS PIPE PLAN

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 2, 2008

1 Nov 2008, 2047 hrs IST, REUTERS

TEHRAN: Iran wants India to commit to a project to export Iranian gas via Pakistan to the south Asian giant and measures have already been discussed to ensure supply security, the Iranian oil minister said on Saturday.Analysts say India has been treading cautiously over the $7.6 billion pipeline project because it wants to reduce the risk of supplies being cut during times of tension with Pakistan, its long-time rival.

“Considering that we have lost many opportunities in the ‘peace pipeline’ project due to India’s procrastination, we have told that country to engage more actively,” Oil minister Gholamhossein Nozari said, Mehr News Agency reported.

Iran has previously said it would press ahead with the long-standing project even if India did not join in.

“The security of this project in each country will be with that country and negotiations so far have created conditions that have assured us this security will prevail,” Nozari said.

Nozari was speaking after talks in Tehran with visiting Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee, who was quoted as saying: “India’s announcement to join the peace pipeline project means that India has no plan to leave it.”

“There has been much negotiation with Pakistan in connection with the cost of transit and establishment of security in the peace pipeline, of which the creation of a joint company might be able to bring about the means,” he added.

When asked if India was being influenced by US pressure to quit the project, Mukherjee replied: “We are an independent country with independent ties.”

The United States is trying to isolate Iran over its disputed nuclear plans and has been urging other countries and companies not to do business with the Islamic Republic.

Washington accuses Iran of seeking to build atomic weapons, a charge Tehran denies. Iran, the world’s fourth biggest oil producer with the second biggest gas reserves, says it wants nuclear energy so it can save its oil and gas for export.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TIMES OF INDIA’

Posted in ASIA, COMMODITIES MARKET, CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, INDIA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MACROECONOMY, NATURAL GAS, USA | Leave a Comment »

JAPANESE GOV’T READIES MONEY FOR NEW IMF BAILOUT FACILITY

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on November 2, 2008

Sunday, November 2, 2008

TOKYO (AP) – Japan is ready to provide some of its ample cash for any International Monetary Fund bailouts for struggling nations to help stabilize the growing global financial crisis, the finance minister said.

Japan will make that offer along with proposals about accounting standards and other regulatory adjustments needed to fix the growing economic woes at a world summit in Washington Nov. 15, Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa told reporters.

Nakagawa did not say the acceptance of its proposals would be needed to get any of the money but he said Japan expects to play a greater international leadership role on the international stage.

He said the IMF has about $ 210-billion funds but that may not be enough.

“Japan is ready if that prove insufficient,” he said, adding that Japan has $ 1 trillion in possible funding from its foreign currency reserves. “We see lending to the IMF basically as risk-free.”

He did not give specifics of what Japan’s proposals may be, stressing that Prime Minister Taro Aso was still hammering out details.

Britain and Germany support the creation of an International Monetary Fund facility to help smaller economies withstand the global financial crisis, Prime Minister Gordon Brown said on Thursday.

“We discussed how we must prevent contagion over the next few days to middle-income countries including in eastern Europe,” Brown told reporters after talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

“It’s vital that the International Monetary Fund plays a central role in supporting these economies. We both agreed to support a new facility for the IMF which would draw on additional resources of countries with substantial reserves.”

IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn told French daily Le Monde he would propose a new regulatory strategy at a meeting next month of the Group of 20 nations.

He said he would suggest a new type of loan to relieve short-term liquidity problems in some economies, and an increase in IMF resources which he said were insufficient to meet requirements over the medium

Nakagawa reiterated his earlier remarks and the views of other Japanese politicians that Japan wishes to exercise political leadership in offering its money and experience in wresting itself out of its bad debt woes of the 1990s.

He said Europe and the U.S. have historical experience with the Great Depression, but Japan has more recent experience and is in a better position to share its expertise.

“We were able to get ourselves out of our problems without help from any other nation,” he said at the Japan Press Center.

Earlier this week British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the International Monetary Fund needs more money to bail out struggling countries.

Brown has called on countries such as China and the oil-rich Persian Gulf states to fund the bulk of an increase in the International Monetary Fund’s bailout pot. The IMF is giving Hungary, Iceland and Ukraine loans and is in discussions with Belarus.

The International Monetary Fund said Wednesday it is creating a new program to get money quickly to developing countries with strong economies that are facing cash crunches in the global financial crisis.

Nakagawa said countries need to respond quickly and work together to get out of the financial problems that started with the U.S. subprime mortgage crisis and is now spreading around the world.

“Japan is taking leadership,” he said.

He said Japan was also doing its part domestically with stimulus spending packages and regulatory changes to prevent a further plunge on the Tokyo stock market.

Merkel said joint action was needed to tackle the crisis.

“I believe the cooperation of the recent weeks has shown we are on the right path,” she said. “We must make risks (in financial markets) manageable.”

Brown said this week that the IMF needed more money to deal with the fallout from the global financial crisis and called on China and the Gulf states to play their part.

Asked about Brown’s call, China’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman responded vaguely on Thursday but kept the door open to a bigger Chinese role in international rescue efforts.

Brown’s spokesman said he welcomed the positive responses from Germany and China to the proposal “and the indication that they (China) have given that they would be prepared to consider contributing to any such fund”.

Brown has said the issue of giving the IMF more resources will be on the agenda when he visits the Gulf this weekend.

Brown said he and Merkel were “in total agreement” about what needed to be done at a Nov. 15 global summit in Washington to discuss how to reform the global financial system.

“We need to have a transparency that has not existed in every area of the banking system,” he said.

Brown voiced confidence that the leaders would agree in Washington on the need for reforms to global supervision and cross-border cooperation as well as on the need to reopen talks on a new global trade agreement.

Merkel made no mention of a German economic stimulus programme widely trailed in national media, which a senior legislator in her ruling coalition said would be worth 20-25 billion euros ($ 26 billion-$ 32 billion).

Brown defended the decision he made back in 1997 to make the Bank of England independent.

“It’s absolutely the right idea. It’s stability and an anchor for our financial and economic system,” he said.

“The Bank of England has brought down interest rates twice recently. They continue to look at what they can do for the future, but I think we’ve got to understand that the way to deal with this global problem … is by a comprehensive set of measures,” he said, referring to interest rate cuts, tax cuts and British efforts to help homeowners and small businesses.

“I think you’ll see us, in the next few days, in a position to do more to help people face what is a global problem,” he said.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘MANILA BULLETIN ON LINE’ (Philippines)

Posted in ASIA, BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, CHINA, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENGLAND, EUROPE, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, GERMANY, IMF, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, JAPAN, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, WORLD BANK | Leave a Comment »

JOINT SCO EFFORTS URGED TO BEAT FINANCIAL WOES – Ensuring the security of China’s economy would be the country’s most important contribution toward global financial stability, Premier Wen Jiabao said

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 31, 2008

UPDATED: October-31-2008

Ensuring the security of China’s economy would be the country’s most important contribution toward Prime ministers representing the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) member countries poses for a group photo in Astana, October 30, 2008 - Xinhuaglobal financial stability, Premier Wen Jiabao told prime ministers from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Thursday.

“It is necessary to have greater interaction between our financial and business communities,” Wen said. “SCO members must work … to enhance the coordination of monetary policies and improve financial controls to prevent and neutralize financial risks.”

Wen said China would consider issuing loans to members of the organization to ensure food security and support joint projects in the region.

“Because of the increasing relevance of food security, China stands ready to assist SCO member organizations in the establishment of technical facilities for agriculture,” he said.

Food prices have soared across the region over the past year as a result of increasing energy costs and disappointing harvests.

The SCO, an inter-governmental organization founded in Shanghai in 2001, groups China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Pakistan, India, Iran and Mongolia are observer nations.

Wen arrived here Wednesday evening on a three-day official visit to Kazakhstan, the second leg of his two-nation tour after Russia.

(China Daily via Agencies/Xinhua October 31, 2008)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘BEIJING REVIEW’ (China)

Posted in AGRICULTURE, ASIA, BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, INDIA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAN, MACROECONOMY, PAKISTAN, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | 1 Comment »

IRAN CUTS OIL PRODUCTION AS PRICES CONTINUE PLUMMETING

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 31, 2008

date: 31 10, 2008

TEHRAN, OCT. 31 (BNA) — IRANS OIL MINISTER GHULAM HOSSEIN SAID, IN LINE WITH A RECENT DECISION TAKEN BY THE ORGANIZATION OF THE PETROLEUM EXPORTING COUNTRIES (OPEC) TO REDUCE OIL SUPPLY, IRAN WILL START CUTTING 199000 BARRELS A DAY OF ITS OIL PRODUCTION AS OF TOMORROW, NOVEMBER 1, 2008.

IN ADDITION, TEHRAN, IN ITS CAPACITY AS MEMBER OF THE OPEC OIL PRICES CONTROL COMMITTEE, WILL MONITOR OPECS MEMBER-STATES COMMITMENT TO THEIR STAKES, THE MINISTER ADDED. REGARDING A PROPOSAL BY OPEC SECRETARY GENERAL TO HOLD AN EMERGENCY MEETING BEFORE DECEMBER GATHERING, THE MINISTER SAID SUCH PROPOSAL WOULD BE PUT IN EFFECT IN CASE PRICES CONTINUE SLIDING.

MTQ 31-OCT-2008 16:10

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘Bahrain News Agency’

Posted in ASIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, OPEC, PETROL | Leave a Comment »

US TROOPS ENTER SYRIA, KILL 8 CIVILIANS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 28, 2008

Number 3255 – Tue, Oct 28, 2008 – Aban 07 1387- Shavval 28 1429

American helicopter-borne troops from Iraq launched an assault on Sunday on a building in a Syrian A survivor of the US military attack on the Syrian village of Al-Sukkiraya on Oct. 26border village, killing eight civilians, official Syrian media reported.
“Four American helicopters violated Syrian airspace around 16:45 local time (1345 GMT) on Sunday. They penetrated eight kilometers (into Syria,“ official Syrian media said, AFP reported.
“American soldiers“ who had emerged from helicopters “attacked a civilian building under construction and fired at workmen inside, causing eight deaths,“ reports said. SANA named the dead and said they were a father and his four children, a couple and another man.
“The helicopters then left Syrian territory towards Iraqi territory,“ it said.
The news agency said one person was also wounded in the attack on the village of Al-Sukkiraya, around 550 kilometers northeast of the capital in the Abu Kamal area.
Earlier, the private television channel Al-Dunia said nine civilians had been killed in the attack. The raid appears to have been the first of its type into Syrian territory.
A US military official in Washington confirmed Sunday that special forces had conducted a raid in Syria that targeted the network of Al-Qaeda-linked foreign fighters moving through Syria into Iraq.
“We are taking matters into our own hands,“ the official told The Associated Press, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the political sensitivity of cross-border raids.

Envoys Summoned

Syria summoned the US and Iraqi envoys to Damascus to protest against what it called a US military attack and to demand that Iraq prevent US forces from “launching aggression against Syria“ from its territory, official media said.
“Syria condemns and denounces this act of aggression and US forces will bear the responsibility for any consequences,“ SANA quoted an unidentified official as saying.
“Syria also demands that the Iraqi government accept its responsibilities and launch an immediate inquiry following this dangerous violation and forbids the use of Iraqi territory to launch attacks on Syria,“ it said. “We are in the process of investigating this“ reported attack, Sergeant Brooke Murphy, a US military spokeswoman, told AFP in Baghdad.
In Washington, a Pentagon spokesman declined to comment. Commander Darryn James told AFP that there was “no response“ from the US Department of Defense about the Syrian reports.
The Iraqi Defense Ministry also refused to comment, on the grounds the incident took place inside Syria.
Syria’s first ambassador to Iraq in 26 years took up his post in Baghdad this month, marking the official end of more than two decades of icy relations.

In Desperation

Syria called the raid a “serious aggression,“ and its Foreign Ministry summoned the charges d’affaires Syrians mourn next the bodies of their relatives who were killed in a deadly US military attack on the village of Sukkiraya, on the Syria-Iraq border, Oct. 27of the United States and Iraq in protest.
Syrian parliament member Suleiman Hadad called the raid “a last-ditch hit by the defeated and desperate“ Bush administration, which is trying to “restore some of its lost dignity in the region.“
Government newspapers also published scathing criticisms in Monday’s editions. Tishrin splashed its front pages with a headline denouncing the raid as a “US war crime,“ while the Al-Baath newspaper described the attack in an editorial as a “stunning, shocking and unprecedented adventure.“
“Even while it’s preparing itself to leave the White House, the Bush administration seems determined to demonstrate its foolishness, and this is a dangerous indication of political madness and stupid arrogance,“ Al-Baath said.
Iran also condemned the attack, while Iraqi officials said they hoped the raid would not harm their relations with Syria.
“We are trying to contain the fallout from the incident,“ Iraqi Foreign Ministry undersecretary Labib Abbawi said. “It is regrettable and we are sorry it happened.“
Some Iraqi officials warned that the US military raid into Syria could be used by opponents of a security pact under negotiation with the United States.
“Now neighboring countries have a good reason to be concerned about the continued US presence in Iraq,“ prominent Kurdish politician Mahmoud Othman said.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘IRAN DAILY’

Posted in INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, MIDDLE EAST, SYRIA, USA, WARS AND ARMED CONFLICTS | Leave a Comment »

IRAN CONDEMNS US ATTACK ON SYRIA

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 28, 2008

News numbre: 8708061469 19:01 | 2008-10-27

TEHRAN (FNA) – Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hassan Qashqavi condemned a recent US attack Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hassan Qashqavion Syria which killed nine civilians and injured 19 others.

“During the US choppers attacks on civilian Syrian people on Sunday, a lot of innocent people were killed, again so many of them were children and also a large number of the member of one family,” Qashqavi told reporters at his weekly press conference in Tehran Monday.

Qashqavi told reporters on Monday that a violation of the territorial integrity of any sovereign state is unacceptable.

“We actually condemn any attack which violates national sovereignty of countries and leads to the killing of innocent people. Such invasions are unacceptable.”

US commandoes in four helicopters on Sunday attacked a civilian building under construction shortly before sundown in al-Sukkariya farm near the town of Abu Kamal, some eight kilometers from the Iraqi border.

The attacks killed nine civilians including four children and their parents and wounded 19 others.

The helicopters reportedly left Syrian space with all the troops again on board.

A US military official earlier admitted to the raid in Syria, but alleged that special forces conducted a raid targeting the network of al-Qaida-linked foreign fighters moving through Syria into Iraq.

Local witnesses said they believed the blast was caused by American shelling.

Syria’s deputy foreign minister has summoned the chargé d’affaires from the American and Iraqi Embassies in protest.

Syria’s state-run media intensified its criticism of the United States on Monday, with the government newspaper Tishrin accusing American forces of committing “a war crime”.

The United States is trying to negotiate a strategic agreement with Iraq that would allow American troops to remain in the country and carry out military operations.

If ratified by the Iraqi government, the Status of Forces Agreements (SOFA) would also grant US forces in Iraq immunity from prosecution.

It also gives the occupation forces a free rein to stage military operations wherever and whenever they deem necessary, without consulting the Iraqi government.

The pact faces strenuous opposition from neighboring countries, especially Syria and Iran, because of fears that the United States might use Iraqi territory to carry out attacks on them.

The United States has no diplomatic relations with Iran and has withdrawn its ambassador to Syria.

The proposed pact is also facing widespread opposition among Iraqi people and politicians.

Many fear Washington has plans to keep permanent bases, despite a denial of any such plan written into the proposal. Iraqis say the drafts submitted by the Americans thus far would infringe on Iraq’s sovereignty by giving US forces too much freedom to operate.

The security pact also faces strong criticism from members of al-Maliki’s own coalition. Two Iraqi officials familiar with the negotiations have warned that a deal is unlikely to be reached before the end of President Bush’s term in January unless Washington backs off some demands seen as giving American forces too much freedom to operate in Iraq and infringing on Iraqi sovereignty.

Iraq’s parliament must approve the deal, and the two officials said opposition in the legislature was so widespread that it stood no chance of winning approval without significant changes in the US position. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because of the secrecy surrounding the negotiations.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘FARS NEWS AGENCY’ (Iran)

Posted in IRAN, SYRIA, USA, WARS AND ARMED CONFLICTS | Leave a Comment »

OPEC GATHERS IN EMERGENCY MEETING AS OIL PRICES EVAPORATE; TALK OF 2M BARREL PRODUCTION CUT (Algeria)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 24, 2008


Last update: October 23, 2008 – 1:28 PM

by George Jahn, Associated Press

VIENNA, Austria – Iran and Venezuela on Thursday urged OPEC to quickly slash output and stem a Workers check the size on pipes at the Freeze Wall test site at Shell Oil Company's Mahogany Oil Shale Research Project near Meeker, Colo., on Wednesday, May 31, 2006. Shell Exploration & Production Co., which is poised to snap up a 160-acre experimental lease on federal lands rich in oil shale, gave a delegation of senators a progress report Wednesday on its efforts to bake shale oil from the ground in western Colorado (AP Photo - Ed Andrieski)steep slide in prices that has left crude at its cheapest in 15 months — and some member countries scrambling to balance their books.

But OPEC’s power to raise prices by cutting supply may be fading amid a global economic crisis that has evaporated demand for oil.

The latest weekly report from the U.S. Department of Energy shows that demand has fallen in 38 of the past 42 weeks. U.S. demand is down nearly 10 percent during the past four weeks year on year. The U.S. still consumes one out of every four barrels of oil produced.

“This is not a supply issue,” said trader and analyst Stephen Schork. “OPEC can affect supply but they can’t touch the demand side, which right now is a house of cards.”

Iranian oil minister Gholam Hossein Nozari told reporters, on the eve of an emergency OPEC meeting to address evaporating prices, that a cut of “two million (barrels per day) will stabilize” the market. And Rafael D. Ramirez, his Venezuelan counterpart, also left little doubt on where he stood.

“We have to take some action now, now,” said Ramirez, telling reporters that the 13 OPEC oil ministers meeting Friday will reach “consensus to take a very, very, very fast action.”

Both he and Iraq’s oil minister said their nations may be forced to rethink or cut spending next year.

Other oil ministers of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries also said output cuts had to be on the table during their meeting Friday — but were well aware that if production is tightened too much, the resulting price spikes could knock a wobbling global economy even further out of kilter.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘STAR TRIBUNE’ (Argélia)

Posted in AFRICA, ALGERIA, ASIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INTERNATIONAL, IRAN, NATURAL GAS, OPEC, PETROL | Leave a Comment »