Posts belonging to Category Europe



The bright future of the electric car

All Volvo cars to be electric or hybrid from 2019

All new cars launched by Volvo from 2019 onwards will be partially or completely battery-powered, in what the company called a “historic end” to building models that only have an internal combustion engine. Between 2019 and 2021, the firm will introduce five 100% electric models, and ensure the rest of its conventional petrol and diesel range has a hybrid engine of some form. It is the first major manufacturer to make such a bold move.

Håkan Samuelsson, the Volvo chief executive, said: “This announcement marks the end of the solely combustion engine-powered car.”

http://www.theguardian.com…   Thu.,  06  July 2017

How much to get Leo Messi ?

New release clause to be set at €300 million

Lionel Messi is on the brink of signing a new contract at Barcelona, according multiple media reports in Spain. With the 30-year-old’s current deal set to expire in June 2018, Cadena Cope says that an announcement will be made by the club on Wednesday, with Messi officially putting pen to paper on July 15 once he arrives back in Barcelona for preseason training.

The new contract will see Messi stay at the Nou Camp until 2021, with an extra one-year extension clause available to both club and player. The  five-time Ballon d’Or winner, however, will be able to leave Barca earlier if any rival club triggers his new release clause — thought to be set at €300 million.

http://www.espnfc.com…   Wed.,  05  July 2017

Making the Planet great again

Global climate change problems can have local solutions

When President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the Paris agreement, the landmark climate accord signed by 196 nations that came into force in November 2016, the decision caused a significant negative backlash among other signatory countries.

Given that the US is one of the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitters, its June 1 reneging on the deal delivered a blow to the global agreement. But, as many commentators were quick to point out, as long as other leaders didn’t follow Trump’s lead, it was largely a symbolic one.

So far, the international response has confirmed this: a chain reaction of support for climate change mitigation, from grassroots up to the highest ranks of government.

http://www.theconversation.com…   Fri.,  30  June 2017

Massive cyber attack

Petya cyber attack: Ransomware spreads across Europe with firms in Ukraine, Britain and Spain shut down

Major firms, airports and government departments in Ukraine have been struck by a massive cyber attack which began to spread across Europe on Tuesday afternoon. In Ukraine, government departments, the central bank, a state-run aircraft manufacturer,  the airport in Kiev and  the metro network have all been paralysed by the hack.

In the UK, the advertising firm WPP said its systems had also been struck down, while in the Netherlands a major shipping firm confirmed its computer terminals were malfunctioning. The virus is believed to be ransomware – a piece of malicious software that shuts down a computer system and then demands an extortionate sum of money to fix the problem.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk…   Wed.,  28  June 2017

The future of Nestle

 U.S. activist presses for ‘bold action’ at Nestle

U.S. activist shareholder Third Point LLC has targeted Nestle (NESN.S) by taking a $3.5 billion stake in the food maker and urging Europe’s most valuable company to boost returns as demand for its products weakens.

Nestle shares jumped as much as 4.8 percent on Monday, touching a record high after Third Point disclosed its position late on Sunday in a letter to the hedge fund’s investors. In the letter, Third Point said it was urging the Swiss group to improve margins, buy back shares and get rid of non-core businesses, including its $27 billion stake in L’Oreal (OREP.PA). Third Point’s 40 million shares – or 1.3 percent of the total – make it Nestle’s eighth-largest shareholder, according to Thomson Reuters data. The $10 billion added to Nestle’s market value on Monday showed that shareholders hoped the investment would spark change at a company which has a reputation for being slow-moving and insular.

http://www.reuters.com…   Tue.,  27  June 2017

AIRBUS versus BOEING

Boeing launches new jet

Boeing unveiled a new version of its best-selling 737 aircraft on Monday, injecting life into a faltering civil aviation market as French President Emmanuel Macron flew in to open the world’s biggest airshow in Paris.
After years of booming orders driven by increased air travel and more fuel-efficient planes, passenger jet manufacturers are bracing for a slowdown in demand while they focus on meeting tight delivery schedules and ambitious production targets.

 http://www.reuters.com…   Tue.,  20  June 2017

Northern Ireland Peace at risk

Gerry Adams to Theresa May:  you are “in breach” of the Good Friday Agreement — the peace treaty

Speaking in London Thursday after a meeting with May, prominent Northern Irish politician and Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams said he had told May she was “in breach” of the Good Friday Agreement — the peace treaty which ended 30 years of deadly sectarian violence known as “The Troubles.”
http://www.cnn.com…   Fri.,  16  June 2017

The globalisation counter-reaction

Globalisation is a highly disruptive force

WHEN the Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in 1914, there were few initial indications that world war would follow. In retrospect, many people have argued that the killing was a freak event that should not have resulted in the folly of war.

But was the subsequent war really an exogenous event? Or was it the near-inevitable consequence of the tensions resulting from the first great era of globalisation? If Franz Ferdinand had survived, maybe something else would have triggered the conflict. If the latter possibility is right, that may be a warning sign for the current era.

http://www.economist.com…   Thu.,  15  June 2017

“Soft Brexit” looks more likely

Britain’s political outlook seems toxic to investors

The combination of a weak Conservative prime minister and the potential for a Corbyn government does not look attractive. Suddenly Britain looks a lot less attractive as a home for international investors. The Conservative party under Theresa May gambled on a snap election to deliver a “mandate for Brexit”. It unveiled a muddled manifesto that alienated voters and was out-campaigned by the veteran left-winger Jeremy Corbyn. The party lost its overall majority and will now be propped up by the very odd ducks in Ulster’s Democratic Unionist party.

The markets reacted less severely than might have been expected. That seems to be based on the view that a “soft Brexit” looks more likely. But it is far from clear that this is the case. David Davis, Britain’s Brexit minister, seems to be ploughing ahead with plans to leave the single market and the and the Labour leadership is unlikely to oppose this.

http://www.economist.com…   Tue.,  13  June 2017

How will the General Election result affect Brexit?

Hung Parliament

The prospect of a hung Parliament would throw serious doubt over Brexit negotiations, due to begin in earnest in just 10 days.

The BBC/Sky/ITV poll put the Conservatives on 314 seats, Labour on 266, the Scottish National Party on 34, Liberal Democrats on 14, Plaid Cymru on three and Greens on one.

The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier has set June 19 as his favoured date for the start of talks, due to last around 14-18 months.

http://www.thetelegraph.co.uk…  Fri.,  09  June 2017