IMF warns time has run out for no-deal Brexit preparations

first_imgThe British government faces a “daunting” range of issues, “underscoring the importance of securing an implementation period”, the IMF said in its annual assessment of the state of the British economy.“The massive scope of work that remains and the limited time before the UK exits the EU would likely leave preparations incomplete on departure day despite even the most determined efforts,” the report said.Lagarde said the 63 separate trade agreements which would have to be negotiated in a short space of time represented a “heck of a lot of work”. Travel and access to medicines are likely to be among the first impacts on members of the public from a no-deal Brexit, she added.The IMF said “fundamental questions” are yet to be answered in the future economic relationship and the land border between the UK and Ireland.“Resolving these issues is critical to avoid a ‘no deal’ credit on WTO terms that would entail substantial costs for the UK economy,” the statement said. Monday 17 September 2018 12:41 pm whatsapp IMF warns time has run out for no-deal Brexit preparations whatsappcenter_img The International Monetary Fund (IMF) today warned that the government has run out of time to prepare fully for a no-deal Brexit, saying it would impose “substantial costs”on the British economy.Christine Lagarde, the IMF’s managing director, said that a no-deal Brexit risks a “reduction of the size of the UK economy”, with a larger deficit and a big fall in the value of the pound. Speaking at the Treasury in London, Lagarde said it is “critical to avoid a no-deal Brexit which would impose very large costs on the UK economy”.The government’s stated aim is to secure a trade deal with the EU, but ministers have repeatedly warned that no deal remains a possibility, with just over six months to go until the UK leaves the EU on 29 March 2019. Some proponents of leaving the EU say the UK should leave without a deal if the deal gives too much power to Brussels.Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator, today told journalists in Spain that talks are proceeding in a “spirit of good cooperation”, according to Reuters, but many observers fear that the lack of progress on key issues, including the status of the Irish border, is standing in the way of a deal.Chancellor Philip Hammond, who was present at Lagarde’s assessment, today said the UK “must heed the warnings” of the IMF. Leaving without a deal would put at risk the economic progress the UK has made since the financial crisis, he added.Hammond previously wrote a letter to the Treasury Select Committee in which he said the Treasury’s analysis showed an £80bn hit to the public finances if the UK leaves without a deal, an analysis broadly shared by the IMF, which has been a vocal opponent of Brexit. Share Jasper Jolly last_img read more

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EU watchdog boss confident ‘no imminent risk’ to banks from no-deal Brexit

first_img A no-deal Brexit would bring no imminent risks to Eurozone banks, the head of an EU banking watchdog has said.Elke Koenig, head of the Single Resolution Board (SRB) – which deals with failing banks – said EU and UK financial institutions, as well as Eurozone lenders, had put in the preparations to avoid financial stability. Tuesday 26 March 2019 3:37 pm Share EU watchdog boss confident ‘no imminent risk’ to banks from no-deal Brexit whatsapp Tags: Trading Archive Callum Keown whatsapp Read more: UK and Ireland in talks to avoid no-deal Brexit hard border“There will be volatility, but given the level of preparations I hope and I am convinced there should be no imminent risks to financial stability [in a no-deal Brexit],” Koenig told a press conference.Her comments come ahead of a fresh deadline of 12 April for the UK to secure a deal to avoid crashing out of the EU without a deal.But Koenig said a no-deal Brexit would have economic consequences.“The impact on real economy might have repercussions on the banking sector, but I am not expecting the problem to come straight from the banking sector,” she said. Earlier this week ratings agency Moody’s said that all large UK banks had taken steps to mitigate the loss of passporting rights in a no-deal Brexit, primarily through establishing subsidiaries in the EU.It said the potential loss of passporting – which allows financial services to operate across borders – would be credit neutral as all banks had worked to ensure operational continuity.Read more: Brexit live: Sterling slips as DUP shreds May’s Brexit dealContingency plans, such as launching new EU hubs and moving staff, had become so advanced they were unlikely to be reversed even if a divorce deal was struck, Moody’s said.But increased operating costs would be manageable, it added. last_img read more

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Feds say Alaska ferry system violates family leave act

first_imgFederal Government | Southcentral | Southeast | Southwest | State Government | Syndicated | TransportationFeds say Alaska ferry system violates family leave actAugust 18, 2017 by Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska News Share:Marine highway employees tie up the Fairweather in Sitka Aug. 6, 2012. A federal lawsuit alleges the marine highway violates family medical leave rules. (Photo by Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska News)The U.S. Department of Labor alleges the Alaska Marine Highway System violates federal leave laws.A civil suit filed in U.S. District Court alleges the ferry system miscalculates time off mandated by the Family and Medical Leave Act.State officials deny that claim.The act requires large employers to provide 12 weeks of unpaid leave when a child is born, fostered or adopted. Terms also cover care for a seriously ill family member – or the employee him or herself.The conflict surrounds what are called “rotational employees.” Those are ferry staffers who work for one or more weeks straight, then take the same amount of time off.The federal complaint, filed Aug. 16, said the ferry system counts such time off as part of the 12 weeks leave required by federal law. It said that’s illegal.U.S. Department of Labor attorneys in Anchorage and Seattle did not return calls for comment by this report’s deadline.Cori Mills, with Alaska’s Department of Law, said the ferry system did nothing wrong.“The state continues to assert its long-standing interpretation of the Family (and) Medical Leave Act, and will continue to support that in the court action,” she said.She said the state is aware of the complaint, but has not been served with an official copy.The complaint asks the court to order the state to follow the Labor Department’s interpretation of the rules.It asks that any fired employee be reinstated and compensated for lost wages and benefits. It also calls for any worker who lost pay or leave time to have it restored.The suit does not say how many employees have been affected or what jobs they held.Share this story:last_img read more

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Alaska candidates promise painless budget cuts, but experts say not so fast

first_imgEconomy | Education | Government | Health | Politics | State GovernmentAlaska candidates promise painless budget cuts, but experts say not so fastOctober 8, 2020 by Nat Herz, Alaska Public Media Share:The Alaska State Capitol (Tripp J Crouse/KTOO)With Alaska facing a billion-dollar budget deficit and a nearly-empty primary savings account, James Kaufman’s pitch sounded compelling: We can have better government for less money — or at least the same amount.“As soon as you talk about a cost reduction, immediately people say, ‘Well, that equals slashing services,’ and all these overheated terms get used,” Kaufman, a Republican running for a South Anchorage state House seat, said at a debate last week. “I think there’s room in all of these systems to find way to do a better job of delivering, and with that, find a way to reduce or hold costs. That’s going to have to happen as we go into this funding problem that we’re going to have to crack.”Kaufman isn’t the only candidate with this point of view. Robb Myers, a Fairbanks Republican running for state Senate, said he thinks the state could cut as much as one-fourth of its $1.3 billion public schools budget without meaningful reductions in quality that Alaskans would reject.“We can still have our budget and have the services that we expect at a much lower rate, without really compromising quality, in most cases,” he said in an interview.But veterans of state budget battles say that after years of spending cuts, it’s unlikely that further reductions can fill much of the deficit without major impacts to services like schools and the Medicaid system.Those two programs together cost the state $2 billion a year. And if lawmakers decide to boost the Permanent Fund dividend to the level set by a historical legal formula, as Myer is proposing, they could eliminate every single other state agency — Fish and Game, Corrections and Transportation — and still face a budget gap.“The easy choices are gone,” said House Speaker Bryce Edgmon, I-Dillingham, who’s served in the Legislature since 2006. “When I hear candidates casually talk about what they’re going to do to make ends meet down in Juneau as if the choices are very easy at hand, I have to shudder — because I don’t think they know what they’re talking about.”Bryce Edgmon (Skip Gray/360 North)For candidates seeking to cut Alaska’s budget, the level of spending on schools and Medicaid make those the two most obvious options to reduce.Myers said he sees inefficiencies in the state’s complicated “foundation formula” used to decide how much money flows to each public school. The formula sets aside more money for each student in smaller schools, which makes sense in rural areas, but discourages consolidation in urban areas, Myers said.He described that as a “seriously perverse incentive” that pushes school districts to spend more money that doesn’t make it into the classroom.Administrators say that while consolidation of urban schools can save money on maintenance, it can also boost the cost and complexity of busing and run into problems with overcrowding. And while they acknowledge that there might be some tweaks to Alaska’s schools spending formula that could save small amounts of cash, they argue that it’s unlikely that thrifty lawmakers have been overlooking obvious money-saving reforms.The state Legislature has been trying to reduce the state budget since 2014, when there was a crash in oil revenues, which once paid the vast majority of Alaska’s bills.“What are we now, four, five, six years into this?” asked Mike Hanley, superintendent of two rural Alaska school districts and a former state education commissioner. “You’re not going to find a piece of that formula that says ‘Oh, click, look at that — millions of dollars.’”Mike Hanley (Lisa Phu/KTOO)Hanley said that targeting the complicated schools spending formula is a way for politicians to talk around a more transparent and realistic way of cutting the schools budget: simply reducing the amount of money set aside for each student.But cutting that line item, known as the base student allocation, faces a different obstacle in the form of a constitutional requirement that the state maintain a system of schools open to all children. Education advocates have already sued over that requirement once, winning an $18 million settlement in 2012 after a judge found that the state had failed to provide enough support and oversight for chronically underperforming schools.“I think if somebody were to go in and challenge the size of that funding formula, we will definitely see a challenge,” Hanley said. “Because I don’t think it’s hard to argue that school districts have lost ground in the course of the last several years.”The $650 million that the state spends on Medicaid is also not easily reduced.Lawmakers already passed a bipartisan, money-saving Medicaid reform package in 2016.And the Legislature cannot just simply cut the budget for Medicaid, because spending is guided not by how much money is set aside for the program but by eligibility standards, the types of services offered and the amount that hospitals and providers are paid for care.Changing those elements can require adjustments to state law and regulation, and negotiation with the federal agency that pays for a large portion of the program.“The state of Alaska is in a contract with the federal government for Medicaid benefits, and it can’t break that contract. That’s why they can’t just cut funding to Medicaid,” said D.J. Wilson, who runs a health policy organization called State of Reform.Lawmakers could save money on Medicaid by voting to make fewer people eligible for the program, shrinking the type of benefits available to recipients and further cutting payments to providers, which the state has already reduced in recent years, Wilson said.Alaska could also cut costs by moving away from a system that compensates providers for each service, regardless of how successful it was, and toward a more coordinated and strategic system of care that rewards efficiency, he said. But, Wilson added, “none of this is easy.”“It is super complex, and no state has figured it out yet,” he said.Even some Republican leaders acknowledge the challenges that come with cutting Medicaid spending.“This is going to be a very difficult year coming up,” Wasilla Republican David Wilson, the chair of the Senate’s health committee, said at a conference hosted by Wilson’s group last month. “States, we don’t really have many options to help constrain the Medicaid spending.”Share this story:last_img read more

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Sajid Javid’s busy first day as business secretary – here’s what he said on the BBC, strikes and the EU

first_img whatsapp Share Tuesday 12 May 2015 5:09 am by Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksYou May LikeMoneyPailShe Was A Star, Now She Works In ScottsdaleMoneyPailzenherald.comMeghan Markle Changed This Major Detail On Archies Birth Certificatezenherald.comMaternity WeekA Letter From The Devil Written By A Possessed Nun In 1676 Has Been TranslatedMaternity WeekPost FunKate & Meghan Are Very Different Mothers, These Photos Prove ItPost FunComedyAbandoned Submarines Floating Around the WorldComedyEquity MirrorThey Drained Niagara Falls — They Weren’t Prepared For This Sickening DiscoveryEquity MirrorOpulent ExpressHer Quadruplets Were Born Without A Hitch. Then Doctors Realized SomethingOpulent ExpressBridesBlushThis Is Why The Royal Family Kept Quiet About Prince Harry’s Sister BridesBlushNoteableyKirstie Alley Is So Skinny Now And Looks Like A BarbieNoteabley Lynsey Barber Show Comments ▼ Tags: BBC General Election 2015 People Sajid Javid Sajid Javid’s busy first day as business secretary – here’s what he said on the BBC, strikes and the EU whatsapp Not even 24 hours into his first day as business secretary in David Cameron’s all-Tory cabinet, and Sajid Javid is on the front foot with a media blitz having appeared on three different morning TV and radio shows.Notably, the government’s business secretary chose the BBC (appearing on BBC Breakfast, Radio 5 Live and Radio 4’s Today) to reject claims that the Tories plan to go to war on the BBC. “Not at all,” said Javid, when asked if there was a war. “There is a bit of over-excitement in those headlines. First of all, John Whittingdale is an excellent choice for culture secretary. He is someone who is hugely experienced.”Javid was formerly culture secretary in the coalition government but that mantle has now been handed to select committee heavyweight Whittingdale.”When it comes to long-term funding of the BBC, clearly there’s been lots of changes in the broadcasting environment, not least technology changes. I think it’s sensible to look at that, to make sure the BBC is on a sustainable long-term funding arrangement,” Javid told the Today programme about the review of its charter.Javid said he believed “passionately in free enterprise” and laid out some of his plans.He will push for new laws on strikes: “There will be a minimum threshold of turnout of 50 per cent of those entitled to vote. We’ve also said that, when it comes to essential public services, at least 40 per cent of people need to vote for strike action.”The government is “absolutely committed” to a referendum on the EU membership, regardless of the outcome of negotiations on the terms of membership, he said this morning. “What I want to see first is a successful renegotiation,” said Javid, declining to say which way he would vote if an in/out referendum were to be held tomorrow.Read more: What you need to know about Sajid Javid last_img read more

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Whole Foods must digest discounted prices as Amazon takes control

first_img Amazon has wasted little time signalling its seriousness about making use of its latest acquisition.On the day after the $13.7bn takeover of Whole Foods Market, the giant e-tailer sent shockwaves through the grocery business by taking a machete to its upmarket prices for popular foods like salmon and bananas as well as fashionable items like kale and avocados.The new owner slashed prices by up to 43% and indicated that more discounts were on the way.“We’re determined to make healthy and organic food affordable for everyone,” said Jeff Wilke, chief executive of Amazon Worldwide Consumer.“We will lower prices without compromising Whole Foods Market’s long-held commitment to the highest standards.”Marc Wulfraat, president of supply chain and logistics consulting firm MWPVL International, noted that the move reflected Amazon’s strategy of eschewing profit for market share, exercising its ability to hit a button in its HQ to drop prices across the US and drive up traffic at Whole Foods locations.Further traffic growth will come from the planned installation of Amazon lockers at the Whole Foods stores. This gels with the plan to turn Amazon Prime into the loyalty programme for the grocer’s customers.One early benefit of the acquisition for Amazon’s logistics activities is the ability to utilise Whole Foods locations for pick-up and return of goods ordered from Amazon. Whole Foods’ footprint allows the aggregation of returns at 460 stores, Mr Wulfraat pointed out.Theoretically these points could also be used to distribute all Amazon shipments, although some observers stress that many Whole Foods outlets do not have the space to handle large volumes of orders.Nor is Amazon likely to utilise the grocery’s logistics setup, which has been outsourced for the most part, Mr Wulfraat noted.“Whole Foods put very little money into the supply chain. There is no strong centralised distribution model,” he said.As for Whole Foods’ warehouse infrastructure – 12 facilities with an average footprint of 100,000 sq ft – it is woefully inadequate for Amazon’s needs and not designed for high-volume traffic, he continued.“Amazon didn’t buy Whole Foods for their supply chain,” he said.Mr Wulfraat believes Amazon will develop its own network of warehouses to handle grocery traffic over the coming two to three years. The company has slightly more than 3m sq ft of warehouse space in the US for Amazon Fresh and Prime Pantry goods, compared with an overall footprint of 100m sq ft.“They need about 12 modern, semi-automated distribution centres for the grocery business,” he said.Operating on a hub-and-spoke basis, this network could be used to replenish Whole Foods outlets as well as Amazon locations that cannot handle full truckloads, he said. At this point, the volumes in the Amazon Fresh and Prime Pantry programmes are not large enough to justify full truckload traffic, which translates into significantly higher trucking costs.Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods has been widely portrayed as part of an epic battle between the e-tailer and Walmart, but Mr Wulfraat doubts this, arguing that they target different segments of the consumer market.Either way, the advance of two “800lb gorillas” is expected to have profound ramifications for the grocery landscape as well as the logistics sector. Pundits suggest that the heft of Amazon and Walmart will diminish flows going to food wholesalers and retailers over time, leading to rising transport costs for these. Another scenario sees a shift of grocery flows to local supply hubs driven by rising e-commerce volumes, which would affect volumes and cost of delivering to stores.Chris Connell, president of perishables specialist Commodity Forwarders, believes these outcomes are possible, but it is too early to tell at this point.“Wholesales also satisfy avenues for salvage or distressed product to find a home,” he added. By Ian Putzger 06/09/2017 © Mohamed Ahmed Solimanlast_img read more

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Informed decision making in cancer care: more myth than reality

first_img Dr. Susan Love, a renowned breast surgeon who has also been a cancer patient as well as a care partner for a loved one with cancer, is all too familiar with the emotional and logistical complexities that assault individuals newly diagnosed with cancer. Although deeply committed to treatment plans that are built around patients’ preferences and priorities, she is also acutely aware of the time and resource pressures of clinical care delivery. “In this era of multi-modality care provided by a team of cancer specialists, the implementation of a treatment plan can resemble a relay race. And once it starts, we’re all on a well-choreographed path that can make it awkward to reconfigure,” she told me in a recent conversation.When cancer is diagnosed, the first treatment regimen tried is generally the best shot for cure or control. But it is generally accompanied by short-term and sometimes long-term physical, emotional, and financial side effects. It can also foreclose later treatment options, including clinical trials. In other words, initial treatment decisions have significant implications for people with cancer and their families.Our research findings reinforce the conclusion that new resources or approaches are needed to help patients understand and define their priorities and preferences — and to help providers ask about them — before treatment begins. Although most practices don’t collect this kind of information in patients’ electronic health records, intake forms could be modified to include questions about work life, household responsibilities, favorite activities, pending events (like weddings), and personal goals. Or a member of the care team could have an introductory conversation with a new patient that elicits this information, which can then be communicated to the rest of the team through the electronic health record or some other way.To truly deliver patient-centric cancer care, providers and patients must partner to personalize the planning and implementation of cancer treatments in order to achieve the high-quality care that patients deserve and clinicians demand.Ellen Miller-Sonet is the chief strategy and alliance officer for CancerCare, a national nonprofit organization providing free, professional support services and information to help people manage the emotional, practical, and financial challenges of cancer. If prices are kept hidden, consumers can’t take more responsibility for their health care costs First OpinionInformed decision making in cancer care: more myth than reality For nearly a decade, the most distinguished minds in cancer care have advocated for shared decision-making — patients partnering with their clinicians to make informed decisions that are consistent with their needs, values, and preferences. Although widely perceived as the gold standard, it seems to be the exception rather than the rule.My organization, CancerCare, has surveyed more than 3,000 American adults with cancer. Many of them noted that during their planning for treatment they did not have enough information about other treatment options, whether they would be able to work, the care they’d need at home, the cost of treatment, caregiver responsibilities, and opportunities for joining a clinical trial. That doesn’t sound like informed decision-making to me.Many factors influence cancer treatment decisions, including safety, effectiveness, and cost. The emergence of new decision-support tools — value frameworks, pathways, guidelines, and the like — is helping inform physicians’ recommendations. But most of these tools are shaped through the eyes of providers and payers, and often ignore what matters most to patients.advertisement [email protected] Related: @esonet Ellen Miller-Sonet About the Author Reprintscenter_img Participation in treatment planningA recent CancerCare report, “The Many Voices of Value,” sought to shed light on how patients participate in deciding on a cancer treatment plan and how they view their roles and relationships with their care providers. Through conversations with cancer patients and oncology social workers, common themes emerged:Patients often feel they are not active participants in developing their cancer treatment plansDiscussions about treatment planning are often overwhelming for people newly diagnosed with cancerFew people realize they can ask questions; even fewer know what questions to ask during these discussionsPatients want their providers to recognize and appreciate the effect treatment has on their livesPatients’ priorities and perceptions of their treatment change over time.Most of the cancer patients we talked with said that upon first learning they had cancer, they felt overwhelmed, anxious, and frightened. Many are eager to start treatment as soon as possible, even though for most cancers taking a few weeks to understand the diagnosis and get more than one treatment recommendation would help them make more rational decisions without compromising their prognosis.At the outset of their cancer journeys, many people found it nearly impossible to articulate their priorities and understand the implications of their treatment choices. With time, though, many said they were better able to communicate with their care team what mattered most to them and to try to incorporate that into their care. By then, however, an initial treatment plan that may not have been aligned with their preferences was usually already underway. Tags cancerpatients Merging the person with the patientMany years ago, a close friend of mine was diagnosed with stage 2 colon cancer. Since he was only 48, his oncologist recommended a post-surgery course of chemotherapy. After doing some homework, my friend opted against doing that. As a dentist, he perceived the possibility of peripheral nerve damage from chemotherapy as too risky. He was willing to sacrifice a few points on the survival curve in order to protect his ability to continue working and support his family.Most cancer patients don’t have my friend’s capacity to assess the personal benefits and risks of a particular treatment. After receiving a cancer diagnosis, many nod their heads at a recommended treatment plan that may optimize effectiveness, safety, and cost, but may not consider their personal quality-of-life goals and priorities.advertisement APStock Related: By Ellen Miller-Sonet Dec. 14, 2017 Reprints Financial toxicity: 1 in 3 cancer patients have to turn to friends or family to pay for care last_img read more

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Une femme se jette d’une falaise en signe de protestation

first_img Facebook Twitter News SHARE There are signs that North Korea is running into serious difficulties with its corn harvest Une femme se jette d’une falaise en signe de protestation Après qu’un agent du ministère de la Sécuritédu Peuple (M.S.P.) eut tenté de lui soutirer une somme d’argent exorbitantepour quelque chose dont elle n’était pas responsable, une femme de Hyesan, dansla province de Yanggang, s’est jetée du haut d’une falaise en signe dedéfiance. Cet incident est survenu à la fin du mois dejuin, dans le cadre des projets d’embellissement menés à travers la province envue du 70ème anniversaire du Parti des Travailleurs de Corée le 10 octobre.Nombre de citoyens ont été mobilisés pour participer à ces travaux etcontraints d’exercer des tâches difficiles, laissant ainsi de côté lesactivités desquelles ils dépendent habituellement pour survivre. Une source de la province de Yanggang, dont lerécit a été corroboré par une autre source de la même province, a révélé àDaily NK le 16 juillet que « les trottoirs ont été retirés dans le cadredes travaux d’embellissement de Hyesan. La femme en question est une vendeusede riz et alors qu’elle traînait sa charrette sur la route, faute de trottoir,un agent du M.S.P. s’est approché d’elle. » La situation a dégénérérapidement après que l’agent lui eut demandé de payer une somme si élevée qu’ilétait évident qu’il tentait de lui extorquer de l’argent, a ajouté la source,en disant qu’ « il aurait tenté d’obtenir cette somme par tous les moyenspossibles. » La femme a catégoriquement refusé, déclarant« mieux vaut mourir que de vivre dans ces conditions », avant de sejeter du haut du rebord situé à proximité. Ayantheureusement survécu à sa chute, elle souffre néanmoins de nombreusesblessures, parmi lesquelles de multiples côtes cassées et une fracture de lajambe. La foule rassemblée autour de la scène aexprimé sa compassion envers cette femme – dont la situation reflète vraisemblablementla leur – selon la source, qui a révélé que les gens ont semblé acquiescerlorsqu’elle a déclaré « comment est-ce que je suis supposée vivreainsi ? » avant de se jeter dans le vide. L’agent du M.S.P. a été vu en train de fuir lascène, mais étant donné la gravité des blessures de la victime, ce n’est qu’unequestion de temps avant qu’il ne soit retrouvé et contraint d’assumer d’unefaçon ou d’une autre les conséquences de ses actes déplorables. Par ailleurs, compte tenu du fait quel’incident est survenu peu avant la période du deuil du Suryeong (Kim Il Sung)et les élections locales, cela accroît la tension parmi les agents déjàperpétuellement anxieux du M.S.P. « L’atmosphère actuelle est telle que lemoindre raté commis par un agent du M.S.P. conduit à son éviction de son poste,et donc il semble que cet agent corrompu ne soit pas non plus à l’abri de subirle même sort », a conclu la source. * Le contenu de cet article a été diffusé à lapopulation nord-coréenne via Unification Media Group. Kang Mi JinKang Mi JinKang Mi Jin is a North Korean defector turned journalist who fled North Korea in 2009. She has a degree in economics and writes largely on marketization and economy-related issues for Daily NK. Questions about her articles can be directed to [email protected] Entire border patrol unit in North Hamgyong Province placed into quarantine following “paratyphoid” outbreak center_img News News News RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR By Kang Mi Jin – 2015.07.24 5:54pm North Korea tries to accelerate building of walls and fences along border with Chinalast_img read more

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North Korean authorities keep tight lid on elite defection

first_img There are signs that North Korea is running into serious difficulties with its corn harvest North Korean authorities have not issued an officialnotification to diplomatic staff in China about the defection of ThaeYong Ho, a prominent diplomat and minister who was posted in London. Owing to theimportance of overseas staff in foreign currency earning operations, the regimehas been unable to radically change the system or withdraw its staff, but it istaking covert steps to preempt imitation defections and domestic unrest. “There has thus far been no official order or notificationabout the diplomatic cadre who defected to South Korea from his post in England. In fact, most employees and staff at the embassy still do not know about theincident,” a source in China close to North Korean affairs told Daily NK onAugust 19.  “Diplomatic families are also proceeding with business asusual. The eyes of the diplomatic personnel here in China are on other things.For instance, in the North Korean embassy in Liaoning, most are preoccupiedabout the fact that the embassy will cease customs operations on August 20,meaning that the employees will need to find new ways to earn foreigncurrency.”When asked about the potential repercussions of the ThaeYong Ho defection, the source said that if the news “fails to spread through thegrapevine” no significant changes are to be expected. One notable shift,however, is an uptick in monitoring by the State Security Department.The State Security Department is particularly suspicious ofthe ideological purity of cadres who are especially rich or especially poor.They are viewed to have the highest flight risk and are thus monitoredtightly. Sources inside North Korea also confirmed that there are nounusual movements at the North Korea-China border. A source from North Korea’s North Pyongan Province said,“News of the defection is not spreading via the rumor mill. Added a source fromRyanggang Province, “There have been signs of incrementally harsh crackdowns ondefections, but there aren’t any other special developments at this time.”  Although the news has not yet spread throughout North Korea,the possibility is high that the news will soon pour over the Chinese borderand reach the broader citizenry. Additionally, North Koreans who are currentlyabroad will bring back the news when they return. From there, it will spreadnaturally from person to person. The source in China surmised that a sizable number of cadreswithin North Korea will already be aware of Thae’s defection. “This isn’t thefirst time a prominent defector has fled with his/her family, so nobody will besurprised at the news. However, people inside the country will not bring up thesubject loosely because they fear punishment,” she pointed out.The source continued, “In the past, rumors about diplomaticdefections spread through Pyongyang cadres and residents with lightning speed.The sudden rise of elite diplomatic defections in the Kim Jong Un era is notbeing publicly addressed, but the authorities will not be able to prevent thenews from circulating in the long run.”  It is likely that the authorities will step up censorshipefforts in the road ahead; however, this ideological pressure is likely toproduce the opposite effect, inciting further defections rather than stokingthe flames of loyalty.“As the State Security Department continues to exertpressure on overseas cadres through censorship and surveillance, they are onlygoing to succeed in producing adverse effects. Those that experience thefreedom of a democratic society are more prone to disillusionment under thesedictatorial techniques. The result? More will end up planning their own escape,”she concluded. RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR North Korea Market Price Update: June 8, 2021 (Rice and USD Exchange Rate Only) US dollar and Chinese reminbi plummet against North Korean won once again SHARE News News center_img Facebook Twitter By Daily NK – 2016.08.20 9:25am AvatarDaily NKQuestions or comments about this article? Contact us at [email protected] North Korean authorities keep tight lid on elite defection News NewsEconomylast_img read more

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Supreme Court allows $2.5-billion class action against Sun Life to proceed

first_img Court approves data breach settlements with BMO, CIBC Universal life policies can’t be used for unlimited deposits, appeal court rules Bitcoin surge doesn’t affect damages, B.C. court says agreement, attorney, auction, authority, balance, barrister, beam, scale, book, bookcase, books, brass, brown, business, colourconcept, contract, counsel, court, courthouse, courtroom, crime, criminal, decision, defendant, divorce, enforcement, financefreedom, gavel, government, guilt, guilty, hammer, horizontal, innocence, judge, judgement, judgment, judicial, justice, lawlawyer, legal, legislation, liberty, libra, litigation, mallet, prosecution, punishment, rights, scale, scales, scales, of, justice, sentencesymbol, symbolic, system, tax, trial, tribunal, truth, verdict, weight, will, wood, wooden andreypopov/123RF The Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) has ruled that a proposed $2.5-billion class action against insurance giant Sun Life Assurance Co. over the alleged miss-selling of certain universal life policies by predecessor Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. can go ahead.The SCC issued a ruling on Thursday denying Sun Life leave to appeal a ruling by the Court of Appeal for Ontario on Sept. 5, 2018, which certified the suit as a class action. The application for leave was dismissed with costs. Share this article and your comments with peers on social media The proposed class action was launched in 2010 alleging various breaches in the sale of 230,000 life insurance policies by MetLife between 1985 and 1998.Sun Life took over administration of the policies when it acquired Clarica Life Insurance Co. in 2002; Clarica bought MetLife’s Canadian operations in 1998.Initially, a lower court ruled that the proposed suit could not be certified as a class action because most of its claims were time-barred. However, that ruling was reversed on appeal last year.The appeal court certified three alleged breach of contract claims related to the policies. Now, the SCC has rejected Sun Life’s bid to appeal that decision.The allegations have not been proven. James Langton Keywords LawsuitsCompanies Clarica Life Insurance Co., Sun Life Financial Inc. Related news Facebook LinkedIn Twitterlast_img read more

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