Communist Tax Lawyer

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Science & Technology

EBRD to Invest 100 Mln Euros in Kazakhstan’s Economy

October 11th, 2011

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is considering financing renewable energy projects – wind farms in particular – in Kazakhstan in 2012, a bank official told reporters.

“We are considering two or three projects for an amount of up to 100 million euros (US$133 million) and are still considering whether this will be debt or equity,” said Riccardo Puliti, EBRD managing director and head of energy and natural resources.

Kazakhstan, which has tripled oil production in the last decade on its way to becoming Central Asia’s largest economy, is seeking investment to develop wind, solar and hydroelectric projects to reduce a power deficit in parts of the country’s regions. Read the rest of this entry »

Armenia’s Metsamor One of the Most Dangerous Nuclear Power Plants

April 18th, 2011

Experts have called Armenia’s Metsamor nuclear power plant “among the most dangerous” nuclear plants still in operation.

The Metsamor nuclear power plant is only 20 miles from Armenia’s capital and most populous Yerevan city. Its location in a seismic zone has drawn renewed attention since Japan’s nuclear crisis, NatGeo magazine said in its article “Is Armenia’s Nuclear Plant the World’s Most Dangerous?”

The power plant Metsamor was built in 1979 and closed in 1989 after an earthquake prompted officials to reconsider the safety of the location. Read the rest of this entry »

Mongolia to Have First Nuclear Power Plant by 2020

April 11th, 2011

Mongolia will have its first nuclear power plant by 2020 and planned to build nuclear fuel production capacity, Tsogtsaikhan Gombo, deputy chairman of state-owned MonAtom LLC has stated this week.

Japan’s recent nuclear disaster is not seen to have a lasting impact on the global nuclear industry, he said.

“We don’t think it’s a big problem for the industry as a whole. It’s a little bit of set-back in time frame, but as a whole it will go on” Gombo said. “We want green development and nuclear is the number one choice.” Read the rest of this entry »

Tajikistan’s Rogun Hydroelectric Power Plant Offers Share Sale, Raises Capital to Finish Dam Project

May 12th, 2010

According to Tajik Ministry of Finance over US$186 million was transferred to the accounts of the Rogun hydroelectric power plant project through the sale of stocks and shares certificates of OJSC Rogun as well as financial donations, reports.

The shares of construction company with total value of US$1.37 billion were issued on January 6, 2010. US$3.2 billion is required for the project achievement.

Construction on the Rogun Dam began back in 1976, and continued in starts and stops for the past 30 years. In 2004, the Tajik government formed a partnership with Russia’s Rusal to complete the project. Despite Rusal’s US$2 billion commitment to the project, Tajikistan authorities had canceled their contract in 2007. Read the rest of this entry »

U.S. Government Steps Up as Google Backs Down

January 22nd, 2010

The fallout of the China Google drama picked up a notch yesterday, just as things seemed to be cooling off, with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s speech on Internet freedom ruffling some feathers in Beijing.

“Censorship should not be in any way accepted by any company from anywhere,” Clinton said yesterday in Washington. “American companies need to make a principled stand. This needs to be part of our national brand. I’m confident that consumers worldwide will reward companies that follow those principles.”

“Some countries have erected electronic barriers that prevent their people from accessing portions of the world’s networks,” she said in words that clearly ring true in China. “They have expunged words, names, and phrases from search engine results. They have violated the privacy of citizens who engage in nonviolent political speech.” Read the rest of this entry »

Inappropriate to Play up Google China’s Withdrawal Threat

January 16th, 2010

This article has just been removed from Xinhua‘s website. Read it here on CTL:

Google China’s exiting statement has sparked worldwide attention to ties between China and the United States this week.

Discussions included China’s web environment, the China-U.S. trade relationship, and others. But it’s inappropriate to play up the issue, or turn it into a political one.

Read the rest of this entry »

China Google Relationship on the Rocks

January 14th, 2010

Recent cyber attacks threatening user security, corporate data, and critical software source codes, as well as expanding censorship restrictions demanded from the Chinese government, have led Google execs to question whether remaining in China is in the company’s best interest and, furthermore, whether a decision to stay would adhere to the company’s official motto, “Don’t be evil.”

Although blocked in China, here is the link to Google’s official statement issued yesterday for our readers abroad.

Here is also the CNBC interview with David Drummond, chief legal officer at Google, who discusses the Internet giant’s reaction.

Google has disclosed that its computer systems experienced sophisticated cyber attacks last month that it suspects originated in China and that targeted Gmail user accounts of Chinese human rights activists.

Taking into consideration the technology, brains, and power behind the Google machine, as well as the severity of the implications, it is pretty safe to say that this isn’t a baseless claim.

Google’s decision to stand up to the Chinese government has earned them praise around the world from human rights advocates, but has undoubtedly irked the powers that be in the Chinese government and has received mixed reactions within China.

China’s largely government influenced media outlets have been trying to downplay the news online and during television broadcasts.
Xinhua: China seeks clarity on Google’s intentions

China Daily: Google pullout threat ‘a pressure tactic’

Shanghai Daily: Mixed bag of reaction to Google quit threat

Since its entrance into the Chinese market in 2006, Google has come under criticism from human rights activists for agreeing to censor a portion of their search results, resulting in some calling the ‘neutered Google’ or ‘communist Google’.

Google, however, has defended its decision to enter the Chinese market with a modified version, claiming that it is still a more open option for Chinese Internet users than domestic search engines like Baidu, which controls approximately 61 percent of the market (to Google’s approx. 31 percent) and maintains a close relationship with the government.

While this is largely true, entering sensitive words like ‘freedom,’ ‘freedom of speech,’ ‘freedom of religion,’ and ‘dalai lama’ into Google search within China will not only lead you to a blocked page, but will shut down the Google search function on your computer for 90 seconds, even today.
Regardless of whether or not Google indeed leaves China, the fallout from this will be very interesting to watch.

Here are some more interesting articles on the subject:
Google Gets on the Right Side of History

Google is not alone in calling China’s bluff

Clash on the Great Firewall

What do Chinese people think about all this? China Geeks has compiled and translated excerpts from all over the web. To find out what Chinese people have to say on the topic, click here!