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DGI Brief - Nov 16, 2016

Good Wednesday, all. Today's top 3 global issues news are about #oilandgas #Australia and #Yemen:

- WORLD: IEA reports the global demand for oil will grow steadily & the so called ‘peak demand’ – a sustained decline – won’t arrive until 2040. Why it matters: Despite our global climate change efforts that are making progress in capping our dependence on oil & reducing greenhouse gas emissions, there are still few alternatives to oil – in manufacturing, transportation, defense etc. We need more intense innovation in finding new replacements to the many uses of crude. Understandably we cannot just go cold turkey & some processes cannot be replaced & be cost effective, but we certainly can & need to do more.

- Today, AUSTRALIA’s Trade Minister said his country would back the China-led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) – a mega-regional economic agreement being negotiated between the 10 ASEAN & 6 FTA countries (Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand & South Korea). In other words, a semblance of the TPP without the US but w/ China in its place. Why it matters: Australia’s move, preceded by Japan just yesterday, reflects the concerns that the TPP is dead with Trump in office. RCEP is no TPP – it mainly focuses on lowering tariffs & not much on labor/environmental protections & there is reluctance on some nations part about opening up their agricultural sectors, but generally speaking, all countries would stand to gain from the RCEP. After all, together they represent 30% of global GDP & almost half the world’s population. The feeling is most would prefer the TPP, but with it likely off the table, they will turn to the next best thing not to be left out…Not in America’s favor.

- YEMEN’s Foreign Minister said his government was not aware nor interested in US Secretary of State Kerry’s announcement of ceasefire & peace talks to establish a unity government to begin this Thursday. Why it matters: Not interested in ending a ruthless 20-month conflict where innocent civilians are slaughtered, face famine, severe water shortages & collapsed healthcare system & economy? The Yemeni government is offended the US is reaching out to the Houthi rebels without them, yet they refuse talks. Meanwhile the government coalition, led by Saudi Arabia & backed by the US is continuously accused of war crimes as their air campaigns frequently strike civilians. Instead of doing everything in their power to bring peace, they prefer war. Have they no soul?

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