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SE ASIA TO FORM HUGE TRADE BLOC--New World Media Watch

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Gloria Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-07-03 09:28 PM
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SE ASIA TO FORM HUGE TRADE BLOC--New World Media Watch
Full excerpts, links up now at www.zianet.com/insightanalytical
Tomorrow at Buzzflash.com

WORLD MEDIA WATCH FOR OCTOBER 8, 2003

1//The Guardian, UK--ARAFAT HAS SUFFERED HEART ATTACK, ADMITS AIDE (Yasser Arafat has suffered a mild heart attack but the Palestinian leadership has sought to keep his health problems secret for fear it will "create panic" The Palestinian press said he was suffering from flu. But Palestinian officials told the Guardian that Mr Arafat had suffered a heart attack last week. "Although he has had a slight heart attack, the doctors say he will make a full recovery. He is in full control. There is nothing to worry about," said a close aide to Mr Arafat, who did not wish to be named.)



2//Asia Times Online, Hong Kong--A WAR SHORT ON SUBSTANCE, LONG ON FORM (However, the US appears set on pursuing the "Taliban" avenue. Reports emerging from Pakistan claim that former Taliban minister Mullah Abdul Wakeel Mutawakil has been released from US custody for him to make contact with Mullah Omar and negotiate some form of a deal. With operations like South Waziristan and Diamir, and involving the Taliban, it is beginning to look as if the US would dearly like to set the stage for it to leave Afghanistan, and with a modicum of its "face" intact.)



3//The Australian, Australia--SE ASIA TO FORM HUGE TRADE BLOC (ASEAN leaders yesterday signed a watershed agreement to move Southeast Asia towards a European Union-style economic community. Pledging to have the ASEAN Economic Community in place by 2020, the pact of 10 nations -- representing 500 million people and a combined gross domestic product of more than $US700billion ($1 trillion) -- aims to shatter tariff and non-tariff barriers and create a "single market and production base" in the region The potential northern powerhouse further isolates Australia, after officials this week said a similar "ASEAN plus Australia" meeting, mooted last year, was off the agenda.)



4//The Japan Times, Japan--RUSSIAN EXPERT HOLDS OUT HOPE FOR KYOTO (The fate of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol was thrown into jeopardy when Russian President Vladimir Putin failed last month to provide any indication that his country would ratify it. Yet one Russian expert on climate change has not given up hope, saying he will continue to urge the Russian government to ratify the pact, aimed at curbing global warming.)



5//The Independent, UK--SHAREHOLDERS INCREASE PRESSURE ON SKY OVER MURDOCH SUCCESSION (Shareholders stepped up the pressure yesterday on BSkyB to make the selection of its next chief executive an open and competitive process, following concerns that James Murdoch would be installed in the postOne shareholder said: "It would take quite a person to provide any sort of check on Rupert Murdoch but his son seems uniquely unqualified to even attempt that task." Brokers say US investors are much more comfortable than UK shareholders with James Murdoch getting the jobThere has been speculation that the new chief executive might come from elsewhere in the News Corp empire, especially from its Fox television operation in the US. Rupert Murdoch has looked within his News Corp business for the last two Sky chief executive appointments.)

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T_i_B Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-08-03 12:40 PM
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1. Guardian article on Asean
Something other than bloody Arnold to get talking about.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/story/0,3604,1058107...

Ten south-east Asian nations yesterday signed a landmark accord to turn their vastly disparate states into an integrated, tariff-free trading and economic community by 2020 that would resemble the early embodiment of the European Union.

At a summit on the Indonesian resort island of Bali, the Association of South-East Asian Nations also agreed to complete deals with China, India and Japan by 2012. The pact with Beijing would create by far the world's largest free trade zone.

Asean's members range from the oil-rich autocratic monarchy Brunei, through relatively democratic nations such as Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and Cambodia to the military dictatorship of Burma and the communist states Laos and Vietnam.

Eleven sectors, including electronics, tourism and air travel will be on a fast-track integration by 2010 and some nations, particularly Singapore and Thailand, are keen to liberalise everything as quickly as possible.
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