Oudtshoorn, the capital of ostrich industry, has been enjoying prosperity from ostrich farming since the 1880s. These big-eyed birds provide jobs to the locals and attract tourists from all over the world. Before I went on this trip to South Africa, I never knew ostrich farming could be turned into a profitable business. During the visit, I observed several advantages and disadvantages of ostrich farming.
This coming week will provide several indications of the recovery of the global economy, amid increasing concerns of another economic downturn. A major point of worry for economists is that there are limited tools that Central Banks can use globally to avoid another recession. China is expected to release data that is leading to expectations of an increase in stimulus measures to avoid a sharp downturn. The European Central Bank has been attempting to raise inflationary pressure to spike a raise in prices. Inflation numbers for some member countries are expected to be published this coming week and are expected to confirm that prices fell by 0.1 percent annually last month. Banks globally have been taking either a more hawkish stance, where there may not be an extension of quantitative easing, or a stance of allowing more money to enter the economy through increased stimulus.
On Monday, October 5, the OECD published a new package of international corporate tax standards that is expected to be approved by the G-20 nations. One of the main goals of the new standards is to limit “profit shifting”, which occurs when companies develop legal structures to report profits in the lowest tax jurisdictions available. If the new standards are enacted by the G-20, it is estimated that governments around the world will recover between $100 and $240 billion in lost revenue per year.
The European Court of Justice declared the 2000 “Safe Harbor” agreement between the United States and the European Union invalid on October 6. This is important because the agreement allowed U.S. tech firms to transfer large amounts of data from European users to American servers. The lawsuit first came to light when Max Schrems, an Austrian law student, noticed that “Facebook transfers his personal data to the U.S., where it can be accessed by authorities with little respect for his privacy.” Many companies such as Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Twitter are left in a sort of “legal limbo”, as described by The New York Times. This essentially means that large tech companies, like those aforementioned, can no longer transfer such data to the United States.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement has been a focal point in international business news over the last few days. Tomas Hult, Director of Michigan State University’s International Business Center, wrote an article discussing the ramifications of the TPP for the United States regarding trade with the rest of the world. The United States’ share of imports in the Asia-Pacific region has been declining as of late, but the TPP could provide the U.S. with the spark it needs to regain its strong presence in this market. Click here to check out Tomas’s article in the online publication The Conversation.
On Monday, October 5, 2015, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was officially signed into existence by the twelve Pacific Rim nations.The countries involved in the deal include the United States, Japan, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Peru, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, and Brunei. China, the world's second-largest economy and the biggest trading partner for over half of the countries involved in the TPP, was not included in the list, and they are hesitant about showing support for the new deal.
After years of negotiation, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal was finally reached on Monday. This means that a new trade bloc has been created with reduced trade barriers among the 12 countries that signed. Since these countries together are responsible for 40% of the world’s GDP and 26% of total trade, the impacts of TPP are far-reaching and significant to the world economy, as well as to the U.S. economy.
The Internet has become an indispensable element in peoples' lives in the 21st century. South Africa is no exception. The Internet user base in South Africa increased from 2.4 million in 2000 to 12.3 million in 2012. The increasing number of internet users presents great opportunities for online businesses.
The Internet’s impact on international business has been incredible. Nowadays, companies invest large sums of money to grow their business through the internet, and it is normal for a business to be based solely on the web. The Internet has allowed companies to market their products to consumers halfway across the world and has helped connect employees situated around the globe. One of the major features of the internet has been its openness and free content, a business model mainly made possible by advertising revenue. The recent rise in popularity of ad blocking software is threatening to change this model, potentially impacting businesses operating around the world.
Volkswagen, one of the world's largest automobile makers, was recently exposed as having cheated on diesel emissions tests as far back as 2009. The Environmental Protection Agency said that Volkswagen could face penalties of up to $18 billion for their wrongdoings. Potentially worse is the fall out from a class-action lawsuit, as anyone who bought one of the affected cars now owns a vehicle that is illegal to drive in the United States. Along with severe repercussions to Volkswagen itself, there could also be difficulties that the German economy faces.