From The Alpha and the Omega - Chapter Seven
by Jim A. Cornwell, Copyright © 1995, all rights reserved
"Recent News Articles about the European Union and the Great Seven"
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- December 1995 The Fabricator - "Complying with THE EUROPEAN MACHINERY SAFETY DIRECTIVE, What’s behind the CE mark? By Andrew J. Bergman
Highlights: Shipping products to European common market may require the proper markings to comply. Exporters of machinery to the European Economic Space (EES), which consists of the European Union (EU) and certain European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries must comply with new legislation for safety and health requirements contained in the Machinery Safety Directive (MSD) that became effective January 1, 1995. The primary purpose for the creation of the common market program was to improve the competitiveness of European business. A number of publications have reported that ISO 9000 registration is a requirement to be able to sell in the EU, but in fact this is optional.
- 4/18/96 IMF welcomes German rate cut, urges other nations to do same. The head (Michel Camdessus) of the International Monetary Fund today welcomed the decision of Germany’s central bank to cut interest rates and encouraged France to follow suit to combat economic weakness in Europe. IMF is presently trying to reach agreements for loans to Ukraine and Venezuela, with assistance from the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank. This announcement came before the weekend meeting of finance ministers and central bank presidents from the world’s seven largest economies.
- 8/4/96 Iran says sanctions won’t work. Dubai, United Arab Emirates - President Clinton wants the U.S. government to penalize foreign companies investing more than $40 million in oil and gas in Iran and Libya, who both sponsor terrorism. But Iran, buoyed by European and Russian opposition to the U.S. law, is confident it would not be bullied by the United States according to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. This legislation threatens mostly European energy groups active in both countries. The 15-nation European Union as well as Russia have already voiced opposition to the legislation.
- 10/28/96 EU wants to punish U.S. on Cuba measures. Luxembourg - European Union foreign ministers (i.e. opposed by Danish Foreign Minister Niels Helveg Petersen) were unsuccessful in early attempts today to forge an agreement on retaliation for a U.S. law (Helms-Burton) that could punish European companies doing business (free trade) in Cuba.
Does the 15-nation European Union have the backbone to stand up to the United States with a retaliatory measure?
Spain (Foreign Minister Abel Matutes) threatened to take unilateral action if a compromise agreement cannot be reached.
- 2/18/97 NATO-Russia brigade proposed. Brussels, Belgium - Secretary of State Madeleine Albright proposed that the 16-member NATO form a joint military brigade with Russia to link it to the alliance as NATO expands eastward for a democratic Europe. In talks with the 15-nation EU, which is 40 years old next month, she stressed the importance of adding as many as a dozen new members over the next decade. Russia is powerless in face of NATO expansion. Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic are expected to receive invitations at NATO’s summit meeting in July. The Baltic states - Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia are interested.
- 5/27/97 Russian weapons no longer target West. Paris - Russian President Boris Yeltsin signs historic deal (security agreement) with 16 NATO members and made a stunning pledge to no longer target Russian weapons at the West.
- 6/16/97 EU’s future may be at stake in summit. Single currency the hottest item on agenda. Amsterdam, Netherlands - European leaders, fighting to save plans for a single currency and prepare the European Union for expansion, opened a summit with the union’s future at stake.
The hottest item on the agenda is keeping the euro, the new currency, on track for its launch in 1999. Many EU nations, including economic powerhouses France and Germany are struggling to meet stringent entry criteria to ensure a strong and stable euro. But as leaders cut their budgets, they are also under increasing pressure from their citizens to create jobs.
EU leaders are meeting at the Dutch Central Bank to conclude an ambitious rewriting of the EU’s treaty so that the group can function effectively after it expands from 15 to 25 or more members in coming years. The Dutch Prime Minister is Wim Kok, British Prime Minister is Tony Blair.
- 7/8/97 NATO invites Poland, Hungary and Czech Republic into alliance. Madrid, Spain - NATO nations reached deep into Eastern Europe, inviting Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic to join the alliance at the end of this century, probably as early as 1999. Also in dispute is the naming of Slovenia and Romania as the next enlargement group. NATO was originally established to confront the Soviet Union along Europe’s East-West divide (created by Stalin in World War II). Now members of the disbanded Soviet-led Warsaw bloc are in a Western embrace. This is all another step toward a new Europe, one with common goals and unified.
NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana termed it "one more big step forward toward our goal of a united free and democratic Europe." Also included in this is the newly created 44-nation Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, including the 16 NATO nations, new invitees Hungary, the Czech Republic and Poland, and 25 countries ranging from neutral Switzerland and Sweden to former Tajikistan and other former Soviet republics in Asia.
- 7/21/97 Merger creates European superbank. Munich, Germany - Two big German banks (Bayerische Hypotheken Weshselbank AG and Bayerische Vereinsbank AG) announced they will merge to form Europe’s second-largest financial institution to be called Bayerische Hypo- und Vereinsbank AG. It is second only to Germany’s Deutsche Bank AG. France’s Credit Agricole SA is second in Europe.
- 11/26/97 The two-decade-old European rule requiring the exclusive use of metric measurements on most product labels is yet to be enforced European Union directive, which is to take effect Jan. 1, 2000. Are European countries creating barriers that will keep products out of their markets? Not really, since both countries export to each other, I believe there will be compromises by the deadline.
- 3/23/98 E-Money Expected To Wipe Out Cash In Europe. Hannover, Germany
– Cash will be wiped out in Europe and replaced with electronic cash cards within the next three years, according to senior executive at German technology company Siemens-Nixdorf. The introduction of the Euro, the new pan-European currency being launched on Jan. 1, 1999, will replace cash with e-money. This will spread to the United States and the Asia-Pacific region, and driven by the usage of the Internet for making purchases.
- 5/4/98 European currency a step toward unity, but nationalism remains. Brussels, Belgium – The European single currency became a reality as the presidents and prime ministers (Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi, and Treasury Minister Carlo Azeglio Ciampi) of the 15-nation European Union agreed upon the 11 participants for the European monetary union and fixed exchange rates. Although the new Europe is squabbling over who should run the monetary union’s European Central Bank. The new currency is to assist in reinforcing Europe’s political weight in the world. Survey show that 51 percent of EU citizens oppose trading in their national currencies for a single one.
- 5/11/98 France mints first euro coin. Pessac, France (CNN) -- The first euro coin was struck at France's official mint Monday by Economy Minister Dominique Strauss-Kahn, making France the first nations participating in the launch of the single currency. Belgium, Spain and Italy will possibly be the next to mint, with Austria and Germany to follow.
The euro will be the official currency of nearly 290 million consumers in the 11 participating single-market nations of the European Union, to be phased in from January 1, 1999, onwards. Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain and Portugal are in, Britain, Sweden and Denmark will give up their currencies in time, and Greece did not qualify yet to use the euro. At the start of 2002, the euro will replace all national currencies. The newly created European Central Bank will be the official body to decide money matters.
To see what the euro coins and paper currency will look like.
- 10/25/98 EU leaders chart new course. Poertschach, Austria – European Union's mostly socialist leaders began mapping out a new left-leaning path for the 15-nation bloc. The EU’s 11 left or center-left leaders were quick to emphasize the union’s change of direction at a summit in this lakeside Austrian resort. Rudlof Scharping, Germany’s defense minister-designate states that socialists throughout Europe were "taking a new responsibility." "We are starting a new era within the European Union," he said.
Leaders said the time had come to look beyond the Jan. 1 launch of the euro, the EU’s common currency. Emphasis should now be placed on sustaining Europe’s growth through the current world economic crisis and getting jobs for the EU’s 18 million unemployed workers," which is promoted by Germany’s Chancellor-elect Gerhard Schroeder, in his EU summit debut. British Prime Minister Tony Blair said he may call a meeting of the leaders of the world’s seven most industrialized nations.
To defend against the economic crises in Asia and Russia, Italy’s new Prime Minister Massimo D’Alema, a former communist, said the leaders agreed there should be a cut in interest rates. French Prime Minister Lionel Jospin revived a plan for the EU to raise loans to finance public works projects such as transcontinental road and rail links, which Kohl shot down.
Blair reversed his Conservative predecessors by calling for the EU to develop its own defense capabilities to tackle regional conflicts without having to rely on U.S. support.
He outlined plans for European military within NATO for peacekeeping or combat missions.
Last updated Nov. 27, 1998
- 1/21/96 G-7 predicts revival of growth. Paris – A stronger U.S. dollar and falling interest rates will fuel a recovery this year from an economic slump across much of the industrialized world, finance ministers from the world’s top economies predicted Saturday. The second half of 1996 "should be marked by a clear, significant revival of growth," French Finance Minister Jean Arthuis told reporters, following a meeting of the Group of Seven. Finance ministers and central bank presidents from the Group of Seven – which includes France, the United States, Germany, Japan, Canada, Italy and Britain – gather three times a year to seek better coordination of their economic policies.
- 4/21/96 World leaders ban nuke tests. Moscow - Russia and leaders of the world’s seven richest democracies agreed Saturday to end nuclear test by the fall and pledged new steps to keep nuclear materials out of the wrong hands.
An eight-nation summit, proposed and hosted by Russian leader Boris Yeltsin, two months before presidential elections. Yeltsin plus the leaders of the Group of Seven hailed their summit in the Kremlin’s refurbished St. Catherine’s Hall as a commitment to lessen the potentially catastrophic dangers of nuclear weaponry (i.e. Russia selling nuclear technology to Iran) and energy gone awry (i.e. closing the Chernobyl nuclear plant).
The G-7 did reaffirm a commitment to provide Ukraine with $3.1 billion in aid to closing Chernobyl. President Clinton remained troubled by Russia’s determination to proceed with its $800 million deal with Iran to build a 1,000-megawatt nuclear reactor.
- 4/22/96 G-7 likes economy. Washington - After years of squabbling over interest rates and currency values, the world’s seven largest industrial powers are trying a little harmony for a chance. Top finance officials from the Group of Seven, or G-7, countries emerged from nearly six hours of discussions Sunday and pronounced themselves very satisfied with the current state of affairs, particularly Kenneth Clarke, Britain’s chancellor of the exchequer. The meetings of finance ministers and central bank presidents from the United States, Japan, Germany, Britain, France, Canada and Italy were held in advance of sessions today of the 181-nation International Monetary Fund and its sister lending organization, the World Bank.
- 7/15/96 Fast-paced growth is leaving many behind. Tokyo - A worldwide surge in economic growth over the past three decades has mainly benefited a small number of countries, leaving a quarter of the world’s people worse off than before, a U.N. 1996 Human Development Report says. There is a widening gap between rich and poor, as James Gustave Speth, administrator of the U.N. program wrote, "If present trends continue, economic disparities between industrial and developing nations will move from inequitable to inhuman." Canada, the United States and Japan, and possibly Sweden are the nations with the best overall quality of life.
- 2/9/97 Strong Dollar finds favor at G-7 meeting. Berlin - Seven of the world’s richest countries welcomed the calm that the dollar’s recovery (since 1995 low a 25 % increase against the German mark at 1.6610 marks and 50% against the Japanese yen at 123.10 yen) has brought to global money markets.
- 6/23/97 Unresolved issues left in summit wake. Denver - World leaders tried to wrap up their first Summit of the Eight, or so-called G-7 plus Russia, with a grand show of harmony. Is Russia a full-fledged member of the group, a G-8, has become a reality, according to Russian President Boris Yeltsin. Also Russia is trying to include itself in the membership in the World Trade Organization.
Someone will surely try to extend this or take out of context what is stated in:
Revelation 17:11 "And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition," but most likely this is too early for this concept.
- 6/24/97 Greenhouse gases must be reduced, nations say. New York - Criticism of the United States by the leaders of European industrial nations called for a worldwide agreement that would require governments to meet specific targets for reducing emissions of carbon dioxide and other "greenhouse gases." Speeches at the global environmental summit at the United Nations continued a theme begun at the Summit of the Eight in Denver. The United States is 5% of the world’s population and generates more than 20% of greenhouse gases, but the fear of emission cuts may lead to job losses and higher prices for energy. In 1995 the theory that accumulation of carbon dioxide and other gases in the atmosphere would lead to rising temperatures (by 2 to 6 degrees), higher sea levels (by ½ foot to 3 feet), more extreme weather and altered agricultural patterns in the 21st century have gained credibility.
- 12/10/97 Industrial nations near treaty to cut heat-trapping gases. Kyoto, Japan - Industrial nations neared final agreement on a treaty to reduce the flow of heat-trapping gases into the atmosphere, to reverse global warming. This 150-nation conference if the deal is approved is trying to cap the greenhouse emissions at levels of 6 to 8% below 1990 levels, although the emission cuts will begin in the year 2008.
- 5/27/98 U.S. supports postponement of World Bank loans to India. Washington – In the first global test of U.S. sanctions against India, the World Bank postponed $800 million in loans because India conducted nuclear tests.
At their summit in England two weeks ago the Group of Eight industrialized nations failed to agree on joint sanctions against India, with the United States, Canada and Japan in favor, and France, Germany, Britain, Italy and Russia opposed. Many of the developing countries are represented on the 24-member board of the 181-nation World Bank.
- 8/18/98 Despite IMF $22.6 billion bailout, Russia devalues ruble by one-third. The unanimous view of G-7 officials was that the critical element to stabilize Russia was reform inside the country.
- 10/10/98 Global recession could be in offing. Washington – Facing the most serious challenge to the world economy in 50 years, finance ministers and central bank presidents from the United States and six other wealthy nations are exploring ways to avert a slide into a global recession.
Last updated Nov. 27, 1998
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