Article: The Global Intelligence Files

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The Global Intelligence Files

Wikileaks, 02 Aug 2021

On Monday February 27th, 2012, WikiLeaks began publishing The Global Intelligence Files, over five million e-mails from the Texas headquartered “global intelligence” company Stratfor. The e-mails date between July 2004 and late December 2011. They reveal the inner workings of a company that fronts as an intelligence publisher, but provides confidential intelligence services to large corporations, such as Bhopal’s Dow Chemical Co., Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and government agencies, including the US Department of Homeland Security, the US Marines and the US Defence Intelligence Agency. The emails show Stratfor’s web of informers, pay-off structure, payment laundering techniques and psychological methods.

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Article: Illicit capital flight a big threat to fiscal discipline

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Illicit capital flight a big threat to fiscal discipline

Newage, 17 July 2021

ILLICIT capital flight remains a consistent problem for the economy despite the government’s avowed position against this. The problem has increased, as economists say, because of an apathy on part of the authorities to curb money laundering and a criminal collusion of people in the agencies responsible for ending such capital flight. Although the government has introduced a scope for the private sector to invest abroad, businesses and individuals have continued to exploit the weak regulatory oversight to launder money. Since 2015, when the government allowed the private sector to invest abroad on certain conditions, only $327.14 million, or Tk 2,774.14 crore, has been invested, as the first report of the Bangladesh Bank on outward foreign direct investments says, in foreign countries through the formal channel. But the total amount of money laundered and invested in foreign countries by Bangladeshi businesses and citizens is many times higher than the amount invested through the formal channel. A US state department report published in November 2020 says that Bangladeshis’ investments across the world exceeded $3 billion by 2018, which is about 75 times higher than the legally invested amount. Continue reading “Article: Illicit capital flight a big threat to fiscal discipline”

Article: Free market illusions: What is the US’ endgame in China?

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Free market illusions: What is the US’ endgame in China?

Ramzy Baroud, 02 June 2021

Why does the US advocate a free market while stifling it too? The current US-China economic war is a perfect example of this perplexing question. The legacy of Milton Friedman, the founder of America’s modern political economy, was a representation of this very dichotomy: the use and manipulation of the concept of the free market.

Through the Chicago School of Economics, whose disciples have proved most consequential in the formation of the American approach to foreign policy, especially in South America, Milton constantly championed the virtues of the free market, emphasising a supposed link between freedom and capitalism and insisting that governments should not micromanage markets. Continue reading “Article: Free market illusions: What is the US’ endgame in China?”

Article: Online crimes: S’pore police play key role in Interpol probe

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Online crimes: S’pore police play key role in Interpol probe

Zaihan Mohamed Yusof, 28 May 2021

Singapore police played a crucial role that led to 585 arrests and US$83 million (S$110 million) intercepted in an Asia-Pacific probe coordinated by Interpol that sought to crack down on online financial crime.

Voice phishing, romance scams and money laundering linked to online gambling were the “top three types of online financial crimes in terms of the number of cases”, the world policing body told The Straits Times yesterday. In voice phishing ruses, callers often impersonate authority figures to scam victims into providing details that would see them lose their money. Continue reading “Article: Online crimes: S’pore police play key role in Interpol probe”

Article: S’pore police played ‘critical role’ in Interpol probe into online financial crimes; US$83m intercepted

Article - Media, Publications

S’pore police played ‘critical role’ in Interpol probe into online financial crimes; US$83m intercepted

Zaihan Mohamed Yusof, 27 May 2021

SINGAPORE – Police in Singapore played a crucial role that led to 585 arrests and US$83 million (S$110 million) intercepted in an Asia-Pacific wide probe coordinated by Interpol that sought to crack down on online financial crime.

Voice phishing, romance scams and money laundering linked to online gambling were the “top three types of online financial crimes in terms of the number of cases”, the world policing body told The Straits Times on Thursday (May 27).

In voice phishing ruses, callers often impersonate authority figures to scam victims into providing details that would see them lose their money. Continue reading “Article: S’pore police played ‘critical role’ in Interpol probe into online financial crimes; US$83m intercepted”

Article: The U.S. Shouldn’t Let China Take the Lead on Trade

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The U.S. Shouldn’t Let China Take the Lead on Trade

Editorial Board, 26 May 2021

However loudly U.S. politicians vow to compete with China, they seem happy to quit the field and let Beijing win in one crucial area: trade. If President Joe Biden hopes to build a coalition in Asia to counterbalance China’s rise, he can’t afford such defeatism.

U.S. allies such as Japan are especially eager to see the U.S. join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) — the 11-nation free-trade agreement that in its original form was intended to cement U.S. ties to Asia. Yet administration officials continue to dodge questions about the deal. At the same time, according to Bloomberg News, China has begun exploratory talks on its own possible accession. Continue reading “Article: The U.S. Shouldn’t Let China Take the Lead on Trade”

Article: Asia’s Lopsided Economic Booms Store Problems for the Future

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Asia’s Lopsided Economic Booms Store Problems for the Future

Mike Bird, 03 May 2021

South Korea and Taiwan both reported better-than-expected economic growth last week, and in both cases it looks quite similar: Exports have boomed, domestic demand hasn’t. That has already caused some problems, which will be exacerbated if the trend continues unabated.

In South Korea’s case, exports of goods were 4.4% higher in the first quarter compared with the final quarter of 2019, before the pandemic hit. Meanwhile, private consumption spending is still languishing 5.5% below that benchmark.

It’s a similar story in Taiwan. Electronics exports in particular are up by 28.4% year-over-year, with net exports contributing far more to the overall 8.2% growth in gross domestic product than consumption. Continue reading “Article: Asia’s Lopsided Economic Booms Store Problems for the Future”