Ian's Feed
Jul 9, 2012
via Breakingviews

Central bank stimulus won’t solve the crisis


By Ian Campbell

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Following another weak U.S. jobs report, fear abounds. The sense is that the global economy is teetering and central banks can’t do much more. The point is that in the developed world they should not do more. Monetary policy risks becoming harmful if pushed further.

Jul 5, 2012

Iran submarine plan may fuel Western nuclear worries

VIENNA (Reuters) – Iran’s announcement that it plans to build its first nuclear-powered submarine is stoking speculation it could serve as a pretext for the Islamic state to produce highly enriched uranium and move closer to potential atom bomb material.

Western experts doubt that Iran – which is under a U.N. arms embargo – has the capability any time soon to make the kind of sophisticated underwater vessel that only the world’s most powerful states currently have.

Jun 27, 2012

West worried by China-Pakistan atomic ties: sources

VIENNA (Reuters) – Western states pressured China at closed-door talks last week to address concerns about its plans to expand a nuclear power plant in Pakistan and provide more information, but were rebuffed, two diplomatic sources said on Wednesday.

Beijing’s atomic relations with Islamabad have caused unease in Washington, Delhi and other capitals due to Pakistan’s history of spreading nuclear arms technology and fears about the integrity of international non proliferation rules.

Jun 22, 2012
via Breakingviews

Denmark is another costly refuge


By Ian Campbell

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

European and triple-A rated? Tick. Definitely not in the euro zone? Tick. No external financing gap? Tick. With at least a few solvent banks? Yes! Denmark ticks all the boxes. It is a safe haven. Unfortunately, the little country – 5.5 million people – is crowded these days and it is charging investors to park their assets in the harbour.

Jun 20, 2012

U.S. think-tank sees more Iran site “sanitization” work

VIENNA (Reuters) – A U.S. security institute published new satellite imagery on Wednesday which it said appeared to show further activity to clean up an Iranian military site which the U.N. nuclear watchdog wants to inspect, including removing earth.

Parchin, which Iran says is a conventional military complex, is at the center of Western allegations that Iran has conducted experiments – possibly a decade ago – that could help develop atom bombs. Iran denies any such ambition.

Jun 15, 2012

Powers want “diamonds for peanuts:” Iran ex-official

VIENNA (Reuters) – A former Iranian negotiator dismissed on Friday as “diamonds for peanuts” a proposal by world powers that Tehran halts higher-grade uranium enrichment and closes an underground nuclear site in exchange for reactor fuel and civil aviation parts.

Hossein Mousavian, now a visiting scholar at Princeton University in the United States, said he did not believe Iran would accept the offer when the two sides hold a new round of talks in Moscow next week.

Jun 13, 2012

U.N. cash gap may hinder its nuclear role: report

VIENNA (Reuters) – The United Nations’ nuclear agency is significantly underfunded, a think-tank said on Wednesday, warning the shortfall risked limiting its ability to identify covert atomic activity that might have a military dimension.

The report, issued by a Canadian think-tank, described the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as a “veritable bargain for international peace and security,” but said the Vienna-based agency needed to be reformed and better financed.

Jun 8, 2012

U.N. nuclear watchdog, Iran fail to reach deal on probe

By Fredrik Dahl

(Reuters) – The U.N. nuclear watchdog said it made no progress in talks with Iran on Friday to seal a deal on resuming a long-stalled investigation into suspected nuclear weapons research by Tehran and it called the outcome “disappointing”.

Herman Nackaerts, global head of inspections for the International Atomic Energy Agency, said after the eight-hour meeting at IAEA headquarters in Vienna that no date for further talks on the matter had been set.

Jun 8, 2012

U.N. watchdog to press Iran for access in nuclear probe

VIENNA (Reuters) – The U.N. nuclear watchdog and Iran began a new round of talks on Friday in an attempt to seal a framework deal to resume a long-stalled probe into nuclear research in the Islamic state.

The United States, European powers and Israel are anxious to curb Iranian nuclear work they suspect is intended to produce bombs. Tehran says the aims of its research programme are purely civilian.

Jun 8, 2012
via Breakingviews

UK government could stimulate with less inflation


By Ian Campbell

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

A lifeless UK, royal party aside? Yes, unfortunately. The Bank of England did not give the economy a shot more adrenalin on Thursday. Yet the third round of quantitative easing is still likely to come before the end of summer. The question is how much good QE3 would do. If action is needed to enliven the UK – and that remains arguable – it’s probably time for the government to be taking it.