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India and China for a news Leadership on the Climate?

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The world is changing rapidly. Until not long ago, the United States of Barack Obama, in the role of the virtuoses, pressed on India and China, the “big polluters”, to renew their environmental policies and join the ranks of countries engaged in combating climate change. The Paris COP 21 agreement, which was signed in 2015 by all the major players in the game, had, despite the many downward compromises, represented a favorable outcome for environmental issues and a success of the American democratic administration.

Less than two years later, Trump is ready to get out of the agreement, and India and China are willing to lead the fight against pollution, without saving sharp criticism to the new presidency’ choices.

None of the two countries, however, seems to be ready to assume a real leadership in the fight against global warming and fill the void that will inevitably be left by USA discharge.

The two Asian governments are gradually taking on more strong positions, on the public level as well, against fossil fuels, as their respective populations are going to directly suffer, more and more, from the adverse effects of climate change and poisoning of natural resources. Beyond reassuring positions, China and India are, at least for now, unable to offset the strong weakening of the economic incentive system the US offered to developing countries in exchange for a greater control over their levels of pollution.

The change of route in Asia is, however, evident and should not be underestimated. For decades, the governments of India and China had looked with suspicion and annoyance at the appeals of the first world countries for a reduction in polluting emissions. The countries which have based their development on wild industrialization without posing too much doubts about the climatic consequences, asked the poorer countries to limit their growth capabilities to preserve the health of the planet. What pulp came from the sermon?

Today, however, both Indian President Modi and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping seem to have adopted a different vision of the world. Modi called a “morally criminal act” to not stick to the commitments assumed on the climate front. Jinping addressed all signatories to the COP 21, recalling that it represents “a responsibility we must assume for future generations”.

Trump’s choice could have dramatic consequences for that same future. In addition to the reduction in economic incentives and technological equipment supplies (the US alone would have to contribute for about 20% of the total), American withdrawal could entice other countries to do the same. The Paris agreement, moreover, had been considered by many to be a downward result, unable to effectively contain global warming in the coming years. There would be much more substantial emissions cutbacks in order to reverse the route, but the American turnaround may also weaken the current deal, encouraging more hesitant states to loosen the ties of their engagement.

The United States is also the second most polluting country in the world, and with the Paris agreement they pledged to reduce 26 to 28% of greenhouse gas emissions by 2025. Without their contribution, experts are asking, will it be possible to meet the objective of limiting the rise in temperature, compared to the pre-industrial era, below the two degrees, as established by the Paris Agreement?

It’s hard to say, but things are neverthless moving. If India is committed to meeting its objectives, despite the fact that 240 million people in the sub-continent still have no access to electricity, China seems to have rapidly traveled to its commitments and started a financing project on the renewable energies ($ 360 million by 2020) that makes the Asian giant the new industry leader, globally.

New environmental policies, according to scholars, have already begun to have some tangible consequences in the two countries. China has slowed down its consumption of carbon and India is about to reduce its construction projects for new coal-fired power plants. New Deli then accelerated investments in wind and solar energy, moving to the target set for 2022: to bring its capacity from renewable sources to 175 gigawatts.

The words of Indian Energy Minister Piyush Goya sound clear and strong: “We are not addressing climate change because somebody told us to do it, it is an article of faith for this government .”

The jibe for the most industrialized countries is also a paradigm shift: “Sadly the developed world does not show the same commitment to fulfill their promises, which could help speed up the clean energy revolution .”

Will the Asian powers therefore be able to fill in the American shortages and load this revolution on their shoulders? The commitment is evident but the economic problem remains. American leadership on the environmental front, in the Obama era, was expressed through a $ 3 billion loan in favor of the poorest countries to support them in the development of alternative energies. This fund has been reduced by two-thirds by Trump and neither Beijing nor New Delhi intend to put all this money on the table. Rather, the two giants seem willing to play a coordinating and addressing role, strengthening the sharing of technology-based knowledge among the nations involved.

Using the words of Varad Pande, an ex-consultant at the Indian Ministry of Energy, the one that is being built todaywill be a different flavor of leadership“.

Intense and spicy, hopefully, like curry.

France, India to cooperate in fighting climate change

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French President Emmanuel Macron and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Saturday their countries would cooperate in the fight against climate change, just days after the U.S. withdrew from the Paris climate agreement. Modi, whose country is the world’s third-biggest emissions generator, said in Russia on Friday that he would continue to back the deal and Macron has said the 2015 Paris agreement is irreversible despite U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw. “The protection of the environment and the mother planet is an article of faith”, Modi said at a joint news conference with Macron in Paris.

 

Iran Urges Removal of Trade Barriers with India

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Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called for efforts to remove the obstacles to trade and banking ties with India. In a meeting with Foreign Secretary of India Subrahmanyam Jaishankar in Tehran on Tuesday, Foreign Minister Zarif expressed the hope for closer relations between Iran and India in light of the history of their mutual cooperation and the issues of common interest. Zarif also stressed the need for the removal of obstacles to banking interaction between Tehran and New Delhi and for efforts to help and support the Iranian students in India. For his part, Jaishankar said he saw a positive prospect of relations with Iran, and hailed the results of his meetings with Iranian officials in Tehran, particularly with Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh. The two diplomats also discussed the ways to promote cooperation in the energy industry, transit industry, and completion of the North-South Corridor, an international transport route connecting Central Asia to the Persian Gulf. Iran and India, two major members of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), have increased efforts in recent years to establish closer trade ties. India is one of the major customers of Iran’s crude oil. Last month, Iran’s Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan proposed the idea of cooperation with India “at a strategic level”, highlighting the far-reaching impacts of military and defense cooperation on regional security.

 

 

India refuses to be part of China's Belt-Road initiative

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India’s External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Gopal Baglay said that “no country can accept a project that ignores its core concerns on sovereignty and territorial integrity”. India on Saturday refused to be a part of China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative citing its objections to the US$46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), that passes through Pakistan-administered Kashmir, the Statesman reported quoting IANS. Citing the CPEC that is being touted as a flagship part of OBOR, India’s External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Gopal Baglay said: “No country can accept a project that ignores its core concerns on sovereignty and territorial integrity”.

 

India: One civilian killed, two jawans injured as militants attack Army patrol party in Shopian district

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A civilian was killed and two jawans were injured after an Army patrol party was attacked by militants in Kashmir’s Shopian district on Thursday. The attack came hours after a joint operation was conducted by the Army, CRPF and state police to flush out hiding militants in Shopian. The operation, considered the biggest in over a decade, targeted militants who have been attacking security forces in the Valley. Over 4,000 troops were deployed to comb several villages in the districts, while helicopters and drones circled the air. The operation was conducted in the wake of multiple attacks against security forces this week.

Inaugural intersec Saudi Arabia opens amid burgeoning market

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The inaugural event of Intersec Saudi Arabia opened on Tuesday in Jiddah, which is a fair of global innovations in security, in safety and in fire protection. This event will be available until 4th May at Jeddah International for Forum and International Events Convention. The impressive opportunities are underlined by the participation of manufacturers and suppliers eager to boost their business opportunities. There is an impressive and huge international participation – about 73%- more than 500 brands and three countries pavilions (China, India and Czech Republic) and an enlightening three day conference program. Jointly organized by Messe Frankfurt Middle-East and Al-Harithy Company for Exhibitions, Intersec Saudi Arabia is held under patronage of Prince al-Faisal, advisor to the custodian of two holy Mosques King Salman and the governor of Makkah Region. Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Frankfurt Messe Middle-East has declared: “We’ve been building our portfolio of worldclass exhibitions in Saudi, and we’re delighted to add Intersec Saudi Arabia to the mix, bringing the Kingdom’s security market to the doorsteps of key stakeholders, where international players can increase their market share, and Saudi visitors can keep up-to-date with the latest technologies and services available in the market”. It will be the first security exhibition in the Kingdom. This three day Conference will be helpful and useful to find solutions regarding security, fire protection and safety, offering a wide range of opportunities and systems to prevent from those problems. Intersec Saudi Arabia is officially supported by the Saudi Ministry of Health and the Saudi Safety & Security Department, Jeddah Police and Jeddah Civil Defense These is the second conference of its kind, after Intersec in Dubai.

Iran, India’s MoD's call for joint cooperation against terrorism.

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Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan and his Indian counterpart Arun Jaitley met on the sidelines of Moscow security conference to stress the need for a decisive fight against terrorism. During the meeting, Brig. Gen. Dehghan highlighted the many cultural and civilizational commonalities for mutual corporation, as well as the geopolitical and geostrategic importance of the two countries, adding “boosting the level of cooperation between Iran and India in political, military and security fields can help tremendously with the improvement of regional security indexes and the expansion of sustainable peace and security all across the region”. The Iranian defense minister noted the various mutual grounds for cooperation between the two countries including fight against terrorism, extremism, drugs trafficking, and piracy, as well as exchanging experiences in various fields, calling for further expansion of ties to the strategic level. Indian Defense Minister Jaitley, for his part, maintained that the common history and civilization has created a bilateral interest on both sides for expansion of relations in all areas related to the preservation of regional security. Stressing that New Delhi recognizes no distinction between different forms of terrorism, adding “every condition is ready to expand cooperation with Iran in defense and security spheres and talks and meetings between the two countries’ defense officials are of great importance in this regard”.

Asian Productivity Organization (APO): Iran makes progress in industrial-scale productivity

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Secretary General of Asian Productivity Organization (APO) Santi Kanoktanaporn announced here on Monday that plans are underway to turn Tehran into productivity hub. APO is a regional and inter-governmental organization which was founded in 1961 by participation of eight countries of China, India, Japan, Nepal, Pakistan, South Korea, Philippines and Thailand and now has 19 members. Aim of APO is to participate in economic-social development of member-states and improve life quality for their people through promotion of productivity with reciprocal cooperation morale among the member-states. Membership in APO is permitted for all Asia-Pacific states which are members of the UN–ESCAP. The 59th meeting of APO board of governors kicked off and it will last three days in Tehran. Sustainable productivity is the main subject of this meeting in Tehran.

India clamps down on Kashmir transport after poll violence kills eight

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Indian police on Monday imposed curfew-like curbs on movement of people across several parts of disputed Kashmir, a day after clashes with protesters during a by-election killed eight people and injured more than 200. Separatist factions in Kashmir called for a two-day strike in protest. Their calls to boycott the poll in Srinagar, and the ensuing violence, resulted in voter turnout of a mere 7 percent on Sunday and forced 70 polling stations to shut down.

Israel Aerospace Industries sign $2 billion arms deal with India.

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Israel Aerospace Industries announced Thursday that it has signed contracts amounting to $2 billion with India. This is the largest arms deal in the history of Israel’s defense industries. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated IAI CEO Joseph Weiss on the deal and he sad that this is another expression of Israel and India’s expanding ties and the prime minister plans to pursue these ties further in the fields of water, agriculture, energy and more during Indian Prime Minister [Narendra] Modi’s visit in a few months. Three Indian Navy ships are scheduled to arrive in Haifa in May as part of the country’s maritime deployment, and as part of the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Jerusalem and New Delhi. The visa agreement s very important for  Israelis to develop their businesses in India, as well as allow for the development of Indian businesses in Israel”, Interior Minister Aryeh Deri said.

 

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