Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Kremlin?

In addition to the Russian government’s increasing control over the oil and gas industries, the country is in the process of creating a series of large state-owned corporations in sectors that include shipbuilding, atomic energy, arms trading, drug manufacturing, nanotechnology, and fishing. U.S. and European government officials are concerned that these large state-owned Russian enterprises are extending their reach by purchasing global assets (as is also the case with the state-owned oil firms in oil-producing countries). Global investments by state-owned enterprises in potentially unfriendly countries is not in keeping with the market model of globalization.

Who’s Afraid of the Trade Gap with China?

As noted in the September 21, 2007, posting, 90 percent of all compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) in the world are made in China. On October 5, General Electric announced that it is expanding its production of CFLs, and other energy-efficient light products used in commercial buildings to reduce emissions. And where are these lights produced? You guessed it. In Xiamen, China. (So much for reducing the trade gap with China.)

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