VIF Neighbourhood News Digest: March 29, 2019
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Pakistan regrets India's decision to postpone upcoming Kartarpur meeting: Dawn
March 29, 2019

Pakistan regrets India's decision to postpone the upcoming Kartarpur meeting [on April 2] "jointly agreed by both sides" on March 14, said Dr Mohammad Faisal, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, following a statement from India's Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Friday. "The meeting was to discuss and find consensus on outstanding issues," he said on Twitter. "Last minute postponement without seeking views from Pakistan and especially after the productive technical meeting on March 19 is incomprehensible." Click here to read...

New SIGAR Report Casts Doubt On Peace Efforts’ Success: Tolo News
March 29, 2019

A potential US-Taliban peace deal “will likely” fail to prevent Afghanistan from coping with terrorists and descending into a “narco-state,” the US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) says in a new report issued Thursday. SIGAR chief John Sopko released the agency’s High-Risk List report, which covers threats to America’s multi-billion-dollar nation-building efforts, at a Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) event. “With or without a peace settlement, Afghanistan will likely continue to grapple with multiple violent-extremist organizations, who threaten Afghanistan and the international community …With or without a peace agreement, Afghanistan runs the risk of becoming a ‘narco-state’ and has already been described as such by former officials from the US government and international organizations,” says the report. Click here to read...

Young IT entrepreneurs feel left behind at the Nepal Investment Summit: Kathmandu Post
March 29, 2019

As the government is set to court international investors on mega infrastructure projects during the two-day Investment Summit starting on Friday, young Nepali entrepreneurs, especially those from the IT sector, say they have been forced to cancel deals with global investment firms because of a lack of clarity in policies and difficulty in doing business in the country. Nepal’s nascent but growing IT sector has seen a steady stream of entrepreneurs buoyed by increased internet reach and high social media use among the country’s young population. But IT entrepreneurs say the policies haven’t caught up with the innovation in the IT field, which has hurt growth and business. Click here to read...

Maldives high court orders police to release former president Yameen: Reuters
March 29, 2019

A court in the Maldives on Thursday ordered the release of former president Abdulla Yameen, saying there was not enough reason to hold him beyond a month under the law. Yameen was arrested on February 18 to face charges of money laundering stemming from the lease of islands for hotel development during his tenure. A three-judge bench of the High Court said the prosecution had not provided any reason to extend his remand in custody. Click here to read...

China boosts measures to open economy: China Daily
March 29, 2019

China will further open up to foreign investors and offer them treatment equal to that of domestic companies with firm protection of their legitimate rights, Premier Li Keqiang said at the Boao Forum for Asia on Thursday. Click here to read...

'Much work' awaits new Sino-US trade talks: China Daily
March 29, 2019

China and the United States will hold their eighth round of high-level economic and trade consultations in Beijing on Friday, with "much work" remaining to be done, the Ministry of Commerce said. Click here to read...

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