VIF Neighborhood News Digest: September 16, 2019
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PAKISTAN
Accountability should not affect business: Hafeez: Dawn
September 16, 2019

Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh has expressed the desire that the accountability process should progress in such a manner as does not negatively affect the business climate as the country is graduating from economic crisis to stability due to “hard decisions” taken by the government. Click here to read...

AFGHANISTAN
Taliban Made Big Mistake and Have No Idea How To Recover: Trump: Tolo
September 16, 2019

While the prospect of resumed peace talks between the United States and the Taliban remains unclear, US President Donald Trump has once again lashed out at the Taliban for its involvement in a recent bombing in Kabul that left at least twelve people dead, including an American soldier. “The Taliban has never been hit harder than it is being hit right now. Killing 12 people, including one great American soldier, was not a good idea. There are much better ways to set up a negotiation. The Taliban knows they made a big mistake, and they have no idea how to recover!” said Trump on Saturday, a week after he announced that Washington had called off peace negotiations with the Taliban after the group admitted to an attack in Kabul that killed at least 10 people, including one U.S. service member. Click here to read...

BANGLADESH
BNP: Govt has established electoral autocracy in Bangladesh: Dhaka Tribune
September 16, 2019

Regarding the change in top leadership of Bangladesh Chhatra League, Fakhrul said the change confirms there was corruption. The current government has established an electoral autocracy system in the country by destroying democratic institutions, BNP has claimed. Addressing a press briefing to mark International Day of Democracy at BNP chairperson’s office at Gulshan yesterday, BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir said Bangladesh went into an election (the 11th general polls) to show there is democracy, but the governments are doing everything against democracy. Click here to read...

Myanmar
Asia-wide campaign seeks pardon for two Myanmar men facing death sentence: Myanmar Times
September 16, 2019

Myanmar civil society groups and anti-death penalty advocates across Asia have launched a campaign seeking royal clemency for two Myanmar migrant workers recently sentenced to death by a Thai court. The Asia-wide campaign was launched on Thursday at the Asian People Forum held at Thammasat University in Bangkok. “We want them freed from the death sentence and a further review of the case,” U Aung Myo Min, executive director of Equality Myanmar, told a press briefing on the sidelines of the conference. Click here to read...

Sri Lanka
Sajith and UNF decide not to drag the issue: Daily Mirror
September 16, 2019

UNF leaders and UNP Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa had decided to end the present deadlock on the nominee issue for the candidacy for the upcoming presidential election this week, Tamil Progressive Alliance (TPA) Leader Mano Ganesan said today. Mr Ganesan in a Facebook post said that leaders of the UNF and Mr Premadasa had decided not to drag the issue beyond this week. He said other decisions were also made but refrained from giving details. Click here to read...

Bhutan
His Majesty The King grants dhar to the new Secretary, Dzongda and Zimpon Wogma: Kuensel
September 16, 2019

His Majesty the King granted to the new Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Communications, Gasa Dzongda, and Zimpon Wogma to the Office of the Gyalpoi Zimpon. Phuntsho Tobgay, former director general of the Department of Geology and Mines, is the new MoIC Secretary. Rinzin Penjore, former director of the National Council Secretariat, is the new Gasa Dzongdag. Click here to read...

Nepal
Asian firms oppose e-passport bid process, saying conditions favour American and European companies: The Kathmandu Post
September 16, 2019

The Department of Passports’ call for global tenders for the printing of five million biometric passports has been criticised by a number of Asian firms for favouring American and European firms in their tender specifications. At least three Asian firms have communicated their grievances to the Department of Passports, saying that the bidding process lacks a level-playing field and favours European and American firms. Click here to read...

China
Belt and Road bearing fruit around globe: China Daily
September 16, 2019

When President Xi Jinping visited the Smederevo steel plant in Serbia in June 2016, he received a warm welcome from the workers, who held up large portraits of him in greeting. Their jobs had been at risk earlier, as the former state-owned steel plant, founded in 1913 and once the epitome of Serbia's industrial success, was on the brink of bankruptcy. Click here to read...

China’s industrial engine slowed to new 17-year low in August, even before new US trade war tariffs took effect: South China Morning Post
September 16, 2019

China’s industrial engine continued to stutter in August, with a key gauge of the country’s manufacturing output slumping to a new 17-year low, in the last month before the United States imposed new tariffs on Chinese-made goods. Click here to read...

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