Connect with us

Top Stories

Risks And Benefits Of Data-Driven Economics In Focus Of Major United Nations Gathering

Published

on

Risks And Benefits Of Data-Driven Economics In Focus Of Major United Nations Gathering

‘Most countries are ill prepared for the digital economy’ says UNCTAD Secretary-General Mariya Gabriel, Dinesh Agarwal and Amanda Long among speakers at UNCTAD’s E-Commerce Week, 16–20 April

Geneva, 28 March 2018 – The rapid digitalization of the world economy is raising profound and urgent questions that global decision-makers in governments, business and communities will gather to answer at UNCTAD’s E-Commerce Week, taking place at the Palais des Nations on 16–20 April 2018.

The E-Commerce Week takes the development dimensions of digital platforms – a key feature of the evolving digital world – as its theme this year. More than 1,000 participants are expected to take part in some 60 sessions, all of which are open to the media.

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Anusha Rahman, Minister of State of Information Technology and Telecommunication, Pakistan
  • Wilson Tarpeh, Minister for Commerce and Industry, Liberia
  • Pan Sorasak, Minister of Commerce, Cambodia
  • Amelia Kyambadde, Minister of Trade, Industry and Co-operatives, Uganda
  • Amani Abou-Zeid, Commissioner for Infrastructure, Energy, ICT and Tourism, African Union Commission
  • Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner, Digital Economy and Society, European Commission
  • Dinesh Agarwal, Founder and CEO, IndiaMART.com
  • Omobola Johnson, Senior Partner, TLcom Capital
  • Amanda Long, Director-General, Consumers International

The E-Commerce Week comes at an opportune time. The digital economy is evolving fast. For example, between 2012 and 2017, the number of monthly Facebook users surged from 1 billion to 2.2 billion – with the fastest growth happening in developing countries.

“The current debate about Facebook and data privacy vividly illustrates that most countries are ill prepared for the digital economy,” UNCTAD Secretary-General MukhisaKituyi said.

“Some 90% of all new users of the Internet over the past half-decade or so live in developing countries – but half of these countries currently lack legislation to protect their privacy.”

New estimates from UNCTAD suggest that global e-commerce reached almost $26 trillion in 2016 (chart 1). The United States remained by far the largest market, with combined e-commerce sales of some $7.6 trillion, with Japan ranked second some distance behind.

However, China is the leader in the business to consumer (B2C) segment. China and the United States accounted for just over half of all B2C sales in 2016. India in 2016 entered the top 10 e-commerce markets for the first time. B2C sales increased 14.5% in 2016 to $ 2.8 trillion. There were an estimated 1.4 billion online shoppers around the globe in 2016 (up by 11% over 2015), equivalent to 55% of all Internet users.

“We know that the digital economy can bring great benefits to developing countries, but we need to address some critical questions to ensure that digitalization leads to the future we want,” Dr. Kituyi said.

Key issues that will be debated during sessions include the development implications of the use of digital platforms in terms of: data privacy, competition, job creation and the sharing of benefits.

Questions include: What can policies do to make developments more inclusive and sustainable? What is needed to help countries that are currently lagging in eTrade readiness to catch up? How can digitalization support women’s economic empowerment?

New figures from the Global Survey of Internet Use Perceptions and on trade in digitally delivered services will be released by UNCTAD, the Centre for International Governance Innovation, the Internet Society and Ipsos at the start of E-Commerce Week on Monday 16 April.

In addition, new statistics on trade in digitally delivered services will be presented for Costa Rica and India on Monday 16 April.

E-Commerce Week sessions will look at consumer protection online, trade logistics in the digital era, digital identities, blockchain technologies, digital platforms and competition policies, trade policies and e-commerce, e-commerce developments in Africa and in South Asia, digital trade and industrialization, the role of regional banks in fostering gains from e-commerce, and much more.

The week will also feature the second session of the Intergovernmental Group of Experts on E-commerce and the Digital Economy as well as many sessions organized by and with eTrade for All partners covering a wide spectrum of topics.

UNCTAD’s E-Commerce Week, 16–20 April 2018

Palais des Nations, Geneva, Switzerland

Highlights of E-Commerce Week include:

Mon 16 April  
10:00-12:00 e-Trade Readiness Assessments: the Lao Peoples’ Democratic Republic, Myanmar and Liberia
12:00-13:00 Special session with EU Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society
15:00-16:30 Egypt’s NewNational E-commerce Strategy
16:30-18:00 The Sharing Economy – Lessons from China
Tues 17 April  
10:00-11:30 Ministerial Roundtable: Advancing Women’s Digital Opportunities
11:30-13:00 Ministerial Roundtable: Digital Impacts on Sustainable Development
15:00-17:30 High Level Dialogue: Development Dimensions of Digital Platforms
Wed 18 April  
All day Business Day
Thur 19 April  
15:00 First Global Meeting of E-Commerce Associations
Fri 20 April  
17:00 Overall findings for the week

See the full programme here or visit unctad.org

Chart 1. Global E-commerce sales, 2016, billion dollars

Rank Economy Total

$ billion

% of GDP B2B

$ billion

% of all e-commerce B2C

$ billion

1 United States 7,554 41 6,904 91 650
2 Japan 2,814 57 2,675 95 139
3 China 2,165 19 1,389 64 776
4 Korea (Rep.) 1,189 84 1,133 95 56
5 Germany 1,009 29 926 92 83
6 United Kingdom 690 26 497 72 192
7 France 567 23 487 86 80
8 Canada 447 29 402 90 45
9 India 337 15 305 91 31
10 Italy 291 16 271 93 20
  10 above 17,061 34 14,989 88 2,072
  World 25,720   22,964   2,756

Note: UNCTAD estimates derived from US Census Bureau; Japan Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry; China Bureau of Statistics; KOSTAT (Republic of Korea); EUROSTAT & BEVH (Germany); UK Office of National Statistics; INSEE & FEVAD (France); Statistics Canada & Canada Post; CII (India) and EUROSTAT & Osservatori.net (Italy).

Top Stories

Oil slips after U.S. crude stocks rise amid deep freeze hit to refiners

Published

on

Oil slips after U.S. crude stocks rise amid deep freeze hit to refiners 1

By Sonali Paul

MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Oil prices fell in early trade on Wednesday after industry data showed U.S. crude inventories unexpectedly rose last week as a deep freeze in the southern states curbed demand from refineries that were forced to shut.

Crude stockpiles rose by 1 million barrels in the week to Feb. 19, the American Petroleum Institute (API) reported on Tuesday, against estimates for a draw of 5.2 million barrels in a Reuters poll.

API data showed refinery crude runs fell by 2.2 million bpd.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were down 55 cents or 0.9% at $61.12 a barrel at 0136 GMT, after slipping 3 cents on Tuesday.

Brent crude futures fell 38 cents, or 0.6%, to $64.99 a barrel, erasing Tuesday’s 13 cents gain.

Investors will be awaiting confirmation from the U.S. Energy Information Administration later on Wednesday that crude inventories rose last week, despite the hit to shale oil production amid the unprecedented icy spell in the U.S. south.

“The key question is how quickly does U.S. oil supply recover. It looks like supply will recover faster than refineries, and supply is going to outpace demand in the next few weeks. That will give negative weight to the market,” Commonwealth Bank analyst Vivek Dhar said.

The price retreat is being seen as a pause following a rally of more than 26% to 13-month highs in both Brent and WTI since the start of the year.

Prices have jumped due to the U.S. supply disruption and supply discipline by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, together called OPEC+, led by an extra 1 million bpd cut by Saudi Arabia.

At the same time stimulus spending to boost growth, investors rotating into commodities, and hopes that the rollout of vaccinations could lead to an easing of pandemic restrictions are all buoying oil prices.

(Reporting by Sonali Paul; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

Continue Reading

Top Stories

Oil settles mixed amid post-storm uncertainty

Published

on

Oil settles mixed amid post-storm uncertainty 2

By Laura Sanicola

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Oil prices settled near year-long highs on Tuesday on signs that global coronavirus restrictions were being eased, although concerns about the pace of a U.S. economic recovery and the return of Texas oil production kept gains in check.

U.S. crude settled down 3 cents to $61.67 a barrel, still close to its highest levels since January 2020. Brent crude <LCOc1> settled up 13 cents, or 0.2%, to $65.37 a barrel.

Both contracts rose more than $1 earlier before retreating.

Shale oil producers and refiners in the southern United States are slowly resuming production after 2 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude output and nearly 20% of U.S. refining capacity shut down because of last week’s winter storm.

Traffic at the Houston ship channel was slowly returning to normal. Production, however, was not expected to fully restart soon and some shale producers forecast lower oil output in the first quarter.

Some oil production may never come back, commodities merchant Trafigura said on Tuesday.

After the cold snap, U.S. crude oil stockpiles were also seen falling for a fifth straight week, while the inventories of refined products also declined last week, an extended Reuters poll showed.

“It appears that last week’s severe cold spell and related Texas power outage could be affecting the weekly EIA data into the middle of next month,” said Jim Ritterbusch, president of Ritterbusch and Associates in Galena, Illinois.

There were also concerns over the U.S. economic recovery, which the chair of the Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell, said remained “uneven and far from complete.”

He said it would be “some time” before the central bank considered changing policies it had adopted to help the country back to full employment.

Commerzbank analyst Eugen Weinberg said the recent oil price rise was buoyed by upbeat price forecasts from U.S. brokers.

Goldman Sachs expects Brent prices to reach $70 per barrel in the second quarter from the $60 it predicted previously, and $75 in the third quarter from $65 forecast earlier.

Morgan Stanley, which expects Brent to reach $70 in the third quarter, said new COVID-19 cases were falling while “mobility statistics are bottoming out and are starting to improve”.

Bank of America said Brent prices could temporarily spike to $70 in the second quarter.

(Reporting by Laura Sanicola in New York; Additional reporting by Bozorgmehr Sharafedin in London and Jessica Jaganathan in Singapore; Editing by Matthew Lewis and Mark Heinrich)

Continue Reading

Top Stories

Exclusive: AstraZeneca to miss second-quarter EU vaccine supply target by half – EU official

Published

on

Exclusive: AstraZeneca to miss second-quarter EU vaccine supply target by half - EU official 3

By Francesco Guarascio

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – AstraZeneca expects to deliver less than half the COVID-19 vaccines it was contracted to supply the European Union in the second quarter, an EU official told Reuters on Tuesday.

The expected shortfall, which has not previously been reported, comes after a big reduction in supplies in the first quarter and could hit the EU’s ability to meet its target of vaccinating 70% of adults by the summer.

The EU official, who is directly involved in talks with the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker, said the company had told the bloc during internal meetings that it “would deliver less than 90 million doses in the second quarter”.

AstraZeneca’s contract with the EU, which was leaked last week, showed the company had committed to delivering 180 million doses to the 27-nation bloc in the second quarter.

“Because we are working incredibly hard to increase the productivity of our EU supply chain, and doing everything possible to make use of our global supply chain, we are hopeful that we will be able to bring our deliveries closer in line with the advance purchase agreement,” a spokesman for AstraZeneca said, declining to comment on specific figures.

A spokesman for the European Commission, which coordinates talks with vaccine manufacturers, said it could not comment on the discussions as they were confidential.

He said the EU should have more than enough shots to hit its vaccination targets if the expected and agreed deliveries from other suppliers are met, regardless of the situation with AstraZeneca.

The EU official, who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity, confirmed that AstraZeneca planned to deliver about 40 million doses in the first quarter, again less than half the 90 million shots it was supposed to supply.

AstraZeneca warned the EU in January that it would fall short of its first-quarter commitments due to production issues. It was also due to deliver 30 million doses in the last quarter of 2020 but did not supply any shots last year as its vaccine had yet to be approved by the EU.

All told, AstraZeneca’s total supply to the EU could be about 130 million doses by the end of June, well below the 300 million it committed to deliver to the bloc by then.

The EU has also faced delays in deliveries of the vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech as well as Moderna’s shot. So far they are the only vaccines approved for use by the EU’s drug regulator.

AstraZeneca’s vaccine was authorised in late January and some EU member states such as Hungary are also using COVID-19 shots developed in China and Russia.

OUTPUT BOOST DOWN THE LINE?

While drugmakers developed COVID-19 vaccines at breakneck speed, many have struggled with manufacturing delays due to complex production processes, limited facilities and bottlenecks in the supply of vaccine ingredients.

According to a German health ministry document dated Feb. 22, AstraZeneca is forecast to make up all of the shortfalls in deliveries by the end of September.

The document seen by Reuters shows Germany expects to receive 34 million doses in the third quarter, taking its total to 56 million shots, which is in line with its full share of the 300 million doses AstraZeneca is due to supply to the EU.

The German health ministry was not immediately available for a comment.

If AstraZeneca does ramp up its output in the third quarter, that could help the EU meet its vaccination target, though the EU official said the bloc’s negotiators were wary because the company had not clarified where the extra doses would come from.”Closing the gap in supplies in the third quarter might be unrealistic,” the official said, adding that figures on deliveries had been changed by the company many times.

The EU contracts stipulates that AstraZeneca will commit to its “best reasonable efforts” to deliver by a set timetable.

“We are continuously revising our delivery schedule and informing the European Commission on a weekly basis of our plans to bring more vaccines to Europe,” the AstraZeneca spokesman said.

Under the EU contract leaked last week, AstraZeneca committed to producing vaccines for the bloc at two plants in the United Kingdom, one in Belgium and one in the Netherlands.

However, the company is not currently exporting vaccines made in the United Kingdom, in line with its separate contract with the British government, EU officials said.

AstraZeneca also has vaccine plants in other sites around the world and it has told the EU it could provide more doses from its global supply chain, including from India and the United States, an EU official told Reuters last week.

Earlier this month, AstraZeneca said it expected to make more than 200 million doses per month globally by April, double February’s level, as it works to expand global capacity and productivity.

(Reporting by Francesco Guarascio @fraguarascio; Additional reporting by Andreas Rinke and Sabine Siebold; Editing by David Clarke)

 

Continue Reading
Editorial & Advertiser disclosureOur website provides you with information, news, press releases, Opinion and advertorials on various financial products and services. This is not to be considered as financial advice and should be considered only for information purposes. We cannot guarantee the accuracy or applicability of any information provided with respect to your individual or personal circumstances. Please seek Professional advice from a qualified professional before making any financial decisions. We link to various third party websites, affiliate sales networks, and may link to our advertising partners websites. Though we are tied up with various advertising and affiliate networks, this does not affect our analysis or opinion. When you view or click on certain links available on our articles, our partners may compensate us for displaying the content to you, or make a purchase or fill a form. This will not incur any additional charges to you. To make things simpler for you to identity or distinguish sponsored articles or links, you may consider all articles or links hosted on our site as a partner endorsed link.

Call For Entries

Global Banking and Finance Review Awards Nominations 2021
2021 Awards now open. Click Here to Nominate

Latest Articles

How the Brexit Agreement Failed the Financial Services Sector 4 How the Brexit Agreement Failed the Financial Services Sector 5
Finance6 mins ago

How the Brexit Agreement Failed the Financial Services Sector

By Steve Taklalsingh, MD UK Business, Amaiz Over the Valentine’s weekend, it was announced that during January, the first month that...

Why the financial sector must use security orchestration & automation to keep up with cyber threats         Why the financial sector must use security orchestration & automation to keep up with cyber threats        
Banking15 mins ago

Two weak links cyber attackers are exploring to breach banks

By Rui Ribeiro, CEO at Jscrambler The coronavirus pandemic has brought on a lot of changes into modern society, specifically...

Huawei 2020 revenue ticks up despite U.S. sanctions, chairman says 6 Huawei 2020 revenue ticks up despite U.S. sanctions, chairman says 7
Business27 mins ago

Huawei 2020 revenue ticks up despite U.S. sanctions, chairman says

By Josh Horwitz SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Huawei Technologies saw slight revenue and profit growth in 2020, in line with its...

Five things investors and listed companies need to know about the common ownership debate and why it matters Five things investors and listed companies need to know about the common ownership debate and why it matters
Business29 mins ago

Employee ownership – resilience in a time of uncertainty

By Stephen Greenwood, Owner of Valloop White House economist Jared Bernstein is a major advocate for employee ownership, in which...

Hyundai Motor to recall Kona EV and other electric vehicles in South Korea 8 Hyundai Motor to recall Kona EV and other electric vehicles in South Korea 9
Business30 mins ago

Hyundai Motor to recall Kona EV and other electric vehicles in South Korea

SEOUL (Reuters) – Hyundai Motor Co will recall 26,699 electric vehicles including Kona EVs in South Korea due to potential...

FAA orders immediate inspections of some Boeing 777 engines after United failure 10 FAA orders immediate inspections of some Boeing 777 engines after United failure 11
Business33 mins ago

FAA orders immediate inspections of some Boeing 777 engines after United failure

By David Shepardson and Jamie Freed WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said on Tuesday it was ordering...

Promise of cheap money keeps stocks buoyant 12 Promise of cheap money keeps stocks buoyant 13
Trading37 mins ago

Promise of cheap money keeps stocks buoyant

By Tom Westbrook and Echo Wang SINGAPORE/MIAMI (Reuters) – Bond markets steadied, the U.S. dollar fell and stocks edged ahead...

Bonding with equities 14 Bonding with equities 15
Investing37 mins ago

Bonding with equities

By Rupert Thompson, Chief Investment Officer at Kingswood Global equities slipped back last week, retreating 1.5% in sterling terms, and...

Dollar falls as risk appetite increases, kiwi ruffled by RBNZ 16 Dollar falls as risk appetite increases, kiwi ruffled by RBNZ 17
Trading41 mins ago

Dollar falls as risk appetite increases, kiwi ruffled by RBNZ

By Stanley White TOKYO (Reuters) – The dollar slipped to a three-year low against the British pound and fell against...

Oil slips after U.S. crude stocks rise amid deep freeze hit to refiners 18 Oil slips after U.S. crude stocks rise amid deep freeze hit to refiners 19
Top Stories43 mins ago

Oil slips after U.S. crude stocks rise amid deep freeze hit to refiners

By Sonali Paul MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Oil prices fell in early trade on Wednesday after industry data showed U.S. crude...

Newsletters with Secrets & Analysis. Subscribe Now