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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

The Asian century is set to begin

The Asian century is set to begin 

Region was envy of Europe in 17th century. World is about to turn full circle 

Asian economies, as defined by Unctad, will be larger than the rest of the world combined in 2020, for the first time since the 19th century 

Valentina Romei in London and John Reed in Bangkok 

Economists, political scientists and emerging market pundits have been talking for decades about the coming of the Asian Age, which will supposedly mark an inflection point when the continent becomes the new centre of the world.

 Asia is already home to more than half the world’s population. Of the world’s 30 largest cities, 21 are in Asia, according to UN data. By next year, Asia will also become home to half of the world’s middle class, defined as those living in households with daily per capita incomes of between $10 and $100 at 2005 purchasing power parity (PPP).

 Since 2007, Asians have been buying more cars and trucks than people in any other region — by about 2030 they will be buying as many vehicles as the rest of the world combined, according to LMC Automotive. 

 Leaders in the region are beginning to talk more openly about the shift. “Now the continent finds itself at the centre of global economic activity,” Narendra Modi, prime minister of India, told the last annual meeting of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. “It has become the main growth engine of the world. In fact, we are now living through what many have termed the Asian Century,” he said.

  So when will the Asian Age actually begin?  

The Financial Times tallied the data, and found that Asian economies, as defined by the UN trade and development body Unctad, will be larger than the rest of the world combined in 2020, for the first time since the 19th century. 

The Asian century, the numbers show, begins next year. To put this in perspective, Asia accounted for just over a third of world output in 2000.  To make its calculations, the FT examined IMF data based on gross domestic product after adjusting for price differences in different countries. This method, which assesses economies by PPP, is widely considered the most relevant measure as it takes into account what people can actually buy in developing countries where prices are often cheaper. 

 Even at market exchange value, Asia still accounts for 38 per cent of global output, up from 26 per cent in the early 2000s.  

What lies behind Asia’s economic eclipse of the rest of the world? The rise of China and India explains a large part of this trend. China is now a bigger economy at PPP than the US, accounting for 19 per cent of world output this year, more than double the 7 per cent recorded in 2000.

 India is now the world’s third-largest economy, with a GDP about double the size of either Germany or Japan, both of which had economies larger than India’s on a PPP basis in 2000. The world’s imminent entry to an Asian age is coming not just because of its two largest economies, but also thanks to growth among smaller and midsize countries.  Indonesia is on track to become the world’s seventh-largest economy at PPP by 2020, and will have overtaken Russia by 2023 as the sixth biggest. 

Vietnam, one of Asia’s fastest-growing economies, has overtaken 17 countries in a ranking of economies in PPP terms since 2000, including Belgium and Switzerland. The Philippines is now a larger economy than the Netherlands while Bangladesh has overtaken 13 other economies in the past 20 years.  

Asia’s recent surge, which began with Japan’s postwar economic surge, represents a return to a historical norm. Asia dominated the world economy for most of human history until the 19th century.

  “Around the end of the 17th century, Europe was looking with admiration and envy at a region of the globe which concentrated . . . more than two-thirds of the world’s gross domestic product, and three-quarters of the world’s population,” said Andrea Colli, professor of economic history at Bocconi University in Italy. 

In the 18th century, India’s share of the world economy was as big as Europe’s, according to Indian politician and author Shashi Tharoor.  Then, for three centuries, Asia’s place in the world shrank as western economies took off, powered by what academics refer to as the Scientific Revolution, then the Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution. 

 “What you are looking at is the great reversal,” says Joel Mokyr, professor at Northwestern University. “Between 1500 and 1750 Europe changed dramatically; the rest of the world did not.”  
By the 1950s, Asia accounted for less than 20 per cent of world output, despite hosting more than half the world’s population.

  “In the 19th century, Asia was transformed from the world’s manufacturing centre into classic underdeveloped economies exporting agricultural commodities,” said Bob Allen, professor of economic history at NYU, Abu Dhabi, who was formerly at the University of Oxford.  But in recent decades that trend has been reversed. The dramatic rise of Japan and South Korea, the first countries in Asia to catch up with the west, has been “dwarfed” by China’s take-off following the country’s introduction of market-oriented reforms under Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping in the late 1970s. 
 In just a couple of generations, a “winning mix of integration with the global economy via trade and foreign direct investment, high savings rates, large investments in human and physical capital, and sound macroeconomic policies” contributed to Asia’s economic leap forward, according to the IMF’s latest regional outlook compiled by a team led by Koshy Mathai. 

“The west's two-century epoch as global powerhouse is at an end,” argues Kishore Mahbubani in his latest book “Has the West Lost It?”  Over the past five decades, hundreds of millions of people in Asia have been lifted out of poverty and many Asian economies have graduated to middle-income or advanced economic status, according to World Bank definitions.  Asia remains poorer than the rest of the world, but the gap is narrowing. China’s GDP per capita at PPP is still only about one-third of that of the US, and about 44 per cent of that of the EU. India has a GDP per capita at PPP of only about 20 per cent that of the EU, according to IMF data.  But India and China’s per-capita income gap with the US and Europe has narrowed dramatically since 2000. 

Over that period, China has become nearly five times richer than the average per capita output of sub-Saharan Africa. The two regions were at similar levels in the mid-1990s. By any measure, Asia is about to reoccupy the centre of the global economic stage. When it does, “the world will have come full circle”, Prof Allen said.

'Bomb threat' on home-bound Singapore Airlines flight from Mumbai: SIA

'Bomb threat' on home-bound Singapore Airlines flight from Mumbai: SIA

Singapore Airlines planes at Changi Airport

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/bomb-threat-home-bound-singapore-airlines-flight-from-mumbai-11379750

SINGAPORE: Singapore Airlines (SIA) said it is assisting authorities with investigations after a bomb threat on Tuesday (Mar 26) on board flight SQ423 from Mumbai to Singapore. 
The plane carrying 263 passengers and 18 crew members landed at Changi Airport at 7.54am, SIA said in response to queries from Channel NewsAsia. 
"We are assisting the authorities with their investigations and regret that we are unable to provide further details," an SIA spokesperson said.
"There was no impact to other SIA operations."
The plane, a Boeing 777-300ER, had departed Mumbai's Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport at 11.36pm local time on Monday, according to website FlightAware.
It arrived in Singapore 31 minutes behind schedule, the site added.

Changi Airport Group said airport operations were not affected.
The plane had earlier raised an emergency alert during landing, according to Plane Finder. A map showed there were other planes around it that had to be diverted.

READ: Scoot flight returns to Singapore after alleged bomb threat; man arrested

READ: Bomb hoax on Scoot flight: RSAF aircrew recount details of mission

Last April, a 41-year-old man was fined for making a false bomb threat on a Scoot flight from Singapore to Hat Yai, Thailand.
Hsu Chun Meng - who was unhappy that a stewardess had told him to check in his oversized hand-carry baggage - joked that there was a bomb in the bag when asked if it contained any prohibited items such as lithium batteries.
The pilot was informed about the incident and put out a Mayday call. The aircraft was escorted to Singapore by two RSAF fighter jets.

READ: 'Calm' on board Scoot flight TR634 despite alleged bomb threat: Eyewitness

In February last year, an SIA flight from Taipei to Singapore was also delayed due to a bomb threat that turned out to be a hoax.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/bomb-threat-home-bound-singapore-airlines-flight-from-mumbai-11379750

Real-time inspection and feedback helps Changi Airport cut costs and manpower

Changi Airport has made great gains in productivity and service standards, three years after it launched a feedback system allowing visitors to rate its staff and facilities, and a real-time inspection system to monitor faults in the airport.
Since 2010, the move has slashed maintenance costs by more than $2 million, improved response time for repairs by 30 percent and reduced manpower by 69, or about five per cent, said the Changi Airport Group in a media statement.
Through its E-inspection system, maintenance staff can report faults to contractors using smartphones installed with specialised software, and keep tabs on repair progress. The instant feedback system also allows airport users to rate counter staff, immigration officers, retailers and cleaners.

Housekeeping Supervisor Sumathi utilising the E-inspection system. Through Changi Airport's E-inspection system, maintenance staff can report faults to contractors using smartphones installed with specialised software, and keep tabs on repair progress. -- ST PHOTO: LAU FOOK KONG

The airport hopes to expand the system soon to include other areas, such as escalators, lifts and passenger loading bridges.

This is the lady behind the voice of Changi Airport’s public announcement system

You might not know the woman, but you surely would have heard that voice before.

Usharani D/O Mugiarayan is a 20-year public announcement veteran at Changi Airport.

She is one of the 16 all-women team that does announcements for the public address system in each terminal. 

The 45-year-old’s crisp vocals are neither digitally-altered nor pre-recorded and prepared to be broadcast by some automated system.

Each time a periodic call comes in from the information counter to relay a request for an announcement, the public address team quickly jots down the message on a notepad, prepares the script and proceeds to make the broadcast live.

To target the message at the correct group of passengers, each announcer is able to control the broadcast location exactly.

Announcements for all three terminals are made from the centralised public announcement headquarters at Terminal 2. 

Between the 16 ladies on the team, they can make announcements in English, Chinese, Malay, Tamil and Japanese. The team receives yearly voice training and refreshers at top vocal communication centres. 

However, it appears enunciation is not only key to doing the job.

In fact, Usharani received the President’s Distinguished Star Service Award in 2008 after helping an elderly tourist from London reunite with her lost item. 

Seeing that the elderly lady was travelling alone in Singapore, Usha contacted her after work to check on the visitor, but ended up showing her around and having dinner together.


Gold Gains Amid Wobbly World Stock Markets, Recession Fears

Gold Gains Amid Wobbly World Stock Markets, Recession Fears

Kitco News this article:

Editor's Note: Get caught up in minutes with our speedy summary of today's must-read news stories and expert opinions that moved the precious metals and financial markets. Sign up here!

(Kitco News) - Gold and silver prices are firmer in early U.S. trading Monday, on some more mild safe-haven buying amid weaker world stock markets to start the trading week. April gold futures were last up $5.20 an ounce at $1,317.60. May Comex silver was last up $0.123 at $15.53 an ounce.

Asian and European shares were mostly weaker overnight on heightened concerns regarding slowing global economic growth. U.S. stock indexes are pointed toward weaker openings when the New York day session begins. Following recent major central bank meetings that warned of slowing economic growth prospects, traders and investors have lost some risk appetite, to the benefit of safe-haven gold and silver markets.

In overnight news, the closely watched German Ifo business sentiment index improved in March, with a reading of 99.6 versus 98.7 in February. However, the manufacturing component of the report was weaker in March than in February.

The marketplace is not paying much attention to the weekend news that U.S. special prosecutor Robert Mueller’s investigation of President Trump apparently did not turn up anything criminal.

The key outside markets today see the U.S. dollar index weaker on a corrective pullback from solid gains late last week. Meantime, Nymex crude oil prices are near steady and trading around $59.00 a barrel. 

U.S. economic reports due for release Monday includes the Chicago Fed national activity index and the Texas manufacturing outlook survey.

Live 24 hours gold chart [Kitco Inc.]

Technically, the gold bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage. Bulls’ next upside price objective is to produce a close in April futures above solid resistance at the January high of $1,331.30. Bears' next near-term downside price breakout objective is pushing prices below solid technical support at the March low of $1,280.80. First resistance is seen at the March high of $1,320.20 and then at $1,325.00. First support is seen at the overnight low of $1,310.60 and then at $1,305.00. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 7.0.

Live 24 hours silver chart [ Kitco Inc. ]

May silver futures bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage. Silver bulls' next upside price breakout objective is closing prices above solid technical resistance at $16.00 an ounce. The next downside price breakout objective for the bears is closing prices below solid support at the March low of $14.985. First resistance is seen at last week’s high of $15.65 and then at $15.75. Next support is seen at Friday’s low of $15.365 and then at last week’s low of $15.22. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 6.5.

Friday, March 22, 2019

What is an eSIM? Why is it Better for Consumers?

What is an eSIM? Why is it Better for Consumers?

iPhone eSIM

We talked about how eSIMS were going to be a game changer for customers last year. And our predictions were right it seems. Apple has added eSIMs into their latest phones, and they’ve been using that technology in watches since they launched the Series 3 in September last year. But what is an eSIM? Short for”embedded SIM” (also called eUICC), an eSIM is a digital SIM that allows you to activate a cellular plan from a carrier without having to use a physical SIM card.

Why would manufacturers Switch to eSIMs?

For phone manufacturers, there are two reasons why they’d want to switch to eSIMs.

1. Better design

Physical SIM cards are mostly useless plastic and the actual working part of the SIM is that tiny metal strip. Removing that tiny bit of plastic means that phone can be a tiny bit thinner.

Size comparison between mini, micro, nano and eSIMs

And as phones and devices get smaller and thinner each tiny little bit of space counts. There’s also the housing, reader, and tray that are needed with physical SIM cards. Manufacturers can eke out a bit more space as well. Plus, removing slots and openings from any device’s shell make it less likely to be compromised by water or dust.

2. Better experience for device owners

In Apple’s case, they decided to use all that extra space to add Dual SIM options to their options. This allows them to deliver a much better experience for their customers.

Here’s why eSIMs are better for consumers:

Picking secondary carrier with an eSIM

1. You’ll be able to change carriers without having to get a new SIM. You can change carriers or your plan in your phone settings. This means less time speaking with carriers, and ordering and waiting for new SIMs. Software does everything.

2. No more having to deal with cutting SIM cards, or finding adapters

3. With eSIMs and dual SIMS, you can have two plans from two different carriers. This means you can:

  • Use one number for business and another number for personal calls.
  • Add a local data plan when you travel outside of the country or region.
  • Have separate voice, text and data plans.

With that being said, if you need a second number with a more basic plan, or want to buy talk, text or data separately you should take a look at some of our plans. They start at only $4/month.

image sources: Apple, GSM Arena

What is an eSIM? Why is it Better for Consumers?
Article Name
What is an eSIM? Why is it Better for Consumers?
Apple has added eSIMs into their latest phones, and they've been using that technology in watches since they launched the Series 3 in September last year. 
Publisher Name
US Mobile
Publisher Logo

The Restoration BMW 507

2019 Jeep Wrangler Production. Subscribe. Toledo Assembly Complex - North Plant, Toledo, Ohio.

2019 Jeep Wrangler Production. Subscribe. Toledo Assembly Complex - North Plant, Toledo, Ohio.

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