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Posts Tagged ‘seeds’

Badminton: Top seeds faces tough task at Asian Games

In Uncategorized on November 2, 2010 at 1:44 pm

G20 sows seeds of future forex skirmishes

In Uncategorized on October 24, 2010 at 7:54 am

GYEONGJU, South Korea (AFP) – The Group of 20 may have declared a currency truce, but its ceasefire agreed in weekend talks appears to contain seeds of hostility that could germinate in future.


Analysts welcomed the pact by G20 finance ministers meeting in South Korea to “refrain from competitive devaluation of currencies” and to bring their current account imbalances into line.

AFP/File – The Group of 20 may have declared a currency truce

The International Monetary Fund was empowered to police the agreement, which however lacks teeth in the absence of numerical targets for countries such as China to lower their swollen trade surpluses.


And at the same time, the G20 agreed a historic shift in power at the IMF to give China and other emerging powers a greater say, potentially creating new sources of friction within the world’s financial watchdog.


Domenico Lombardi, a former executive board member of the IMF and World Bank, said US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner had scored a victory for his argument that huge imbalances in trade are a new menace to the world economy.


“The G20 consensus is gradually shifting towards the US position but without numerical targets it is unlikely that this broad commitment will bite,” Lombardi, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, told AFP.


He suggested that China had bought itself some breathing space after months of tension over its policy of deliberately cheapening the yuan, which critics argue gives Chinese exporters an unfair edge in global markets.


“The Chinese pledged greater flexibility in their currency ahead of the Toronto summit but they did little afterwards,” Lombardi said, referring to a G20 leaders’ meeting in June.


By targeting China’s hefty current account surplus, Washington is groping for a new way to cajole Beijing into relaxing its tight shackles on the yuan.


However, many emerging markets including China suspect that the United States is deliberately allowing the dollar to flounder on currency markets so that it can export its way back to prosperity.


Caught between the US and Chinese pincers are major economies such as Japan and emerging markets in Asia and Latin America, which are seeing their own currencies rise to alarming levels to the detriment of their exporting firms.


The G20’s credibility in resolving the tension was not helped by the decision of Brazilian Finance Minister Guido Mantega — who gave voice to fears of an “international currency war” last month — to stay away from South Korea.


Other G20 finance ministers admitted that the unwieldy grouping of advanced and developing economies had faced valid criticisms this weekend, in the run-up to a November 11-12 summit in Seoul.


“We arrived in Gyeongju full of apprehension and we leave full of expectation,” France’s Christine Lagarde said.


Britain’s George Osborne said “no one really anticipated on arrival” the breakthroughs on tackling the currency question and IMF reform.


South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak had jokingly threatened on Friday to shut down all transport to the meeting venue, a 90-minute drive from the nearest big airport at Busan, until a deal was struck.


Ahn Soon-Kwon, a research fellow at the Korea Economic Research Institute, said the G20 had made a “good start” towards defusing any currency war and labelled the agreement “quite an achievement for the US”.


“But if you look into it, China will gain more, because striking a deal like this will hardly stop US consumers from buying cheap made-in-China goods,” he said.


“This deal will actually help China earn some respite from Washington’s criticism on currency issues.”


Marco Annunziata, chief economist with Unicredit Group in London, noted the inherent tension in tasking the IMF with a beefed-up surveillance role just as China is set to wield more votes on its board.


“The IMF will need to be extremely candid and outspoken, and the experience so far does not bode well: the IMF was already charged with monitoring global imbalances, but its surveillance has no teeth,” he said.


Geithner himself launched a thinly veiled attack on China’s past reluctance to allow the public release of IMF criticism of its currency policy.


Overall, Annunziata said, the G20 agreement would go “some way towards calming market fears of currency wars”.


“Whether the positive impact is durable, however, will depend on whether national policies are in fact changed to be in line with the agreement,” he said.


“Otherwise this will be seen as an empty statement of principle.”

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Source: SGGP

Farmers face hardships due to faulty rice seeds

In Uncategorized on June 1, 2010 at 7:44 am

Hundreds of farming households in the central province of Binh Dinh are experiencing hardships, as the Nhi uu 838 hybrid rice seeds, sowed for winter-spring harvest, have not sprouted. 


Farmers are at a loss as to what to do and are pressed for time. 


Ngo Thi Kim Anh, of the Trung Dinh village and Nhon An commune, said she had to buy new rice seeds from several places three days ago in order to sprout the roots before sowing.


The hybrid cultivar Nhi uu 838 rice seeds that she bought at An Nhon District’s Economic Department did not sprout, so she plans to return them to the department.

Ngo Thi Kim Anh shows the hybrid cultivar Nhi uu 838 which do not sprout. (Photo:SGGP)

Anh said her family has just 720 square meters to cultivate rice with two crops per year, so she has to choose rice seeds with the highest output. However, when it came time to sow them on May 25, all eight kilograms of rice seeds had failed to sprout and smelled sour like vinegar, Anh said.


All households of the Nhon An commune have voiced similar complaints about the Nhi uu 838 rice seed failing to sprout.


Chau Thi Hong Loan, from the Thuan Thai village, said most farming families have used the Nhi uu 838 rice seed for many years but this time they have forced us into a difficult situation.


The hybrid seeds cost VND25,000 (US$1.3) per kilogram, although farmers have to pay just VND15,000 (US$0.8) per kilogram, with remainder paid for by the An Nhon District.


Loan said to fill her 1,800 square meters of rice field, she bought 12 kilograms of seed for VND180,000 ($9.4). However, the entire crop failed to sprout, causing her great distress.


Confronted with situation of bad rice seeds, Bui Van Cu, Chairman of Nhon An Commune People’s Committee, said that the number of farmers using hybrid rice seed Nhi uu 838 has increased, so the commune bought 3.3 tons of the rice seed from the An Nhon District.


The rice seeds brought to the Nhon An commune were supplied by the Southern Seed Company, Cu said.


Commune authorities do not know why the rice seeds did not sprout, so commune cadres have to help farmers to find new rice seeds to avoid using rice for sowing.


It is not the first time the Nhi uu 838 hybrid has not sprouted. In the Summer- Spring 2008, hundreds of farmers of the Nhon Loc and Nhon Phuc communes returned rice seeds to Viet Hoa Investment and Development Co.Ltd for this same failure.


Le Dinh An, a cadre of encouraging agricultural expansion in the Nhon An commune, admitted the Nhi uu 838 rice seed not sprout. The commune is checking the rice seeds to make measures to resolve the issue and compensate to farmers, said An.

Source: SGGP

National investigation launched into toxic watermelon seeds

In Vietnam Health on December 15, 2009 at 10:00 am








Health authorities will test watermelon seeds for the presence of a cancer-causing chemical across the country

Following claims that some watermelon seeds sold in central Vietnam had been soaked in a toxic cancer-causing substance, health authorities said they would launch a nationwide investigation.


Le Thi Hong Hao, deputy head of the National Institute for Testing Food Safety, said the institute would work with inspectors from the Vietnam Food Administration (VFA) to collect samples of watermelon seeds for tests. The results will be announced shortly.


Earlier, the Danang Department of Health reported it had found watermelon seeds soaked with Rhodamine, a toxic substance prohibited for use in food, for sale in local markets.


Source: SGGP Bookmark & Share

Inquiry launched into toxic watermelon seeds

In Vietnam Society on December 13, 2009 at 4:04 am

Officials from the Binh Thuan Province Department of Health conducted a surprise inspection December 11 of the Tan Phat Company to investigate claims it was selling toxic watermelon seeds.








Health officials inspect Tan Phat Company’s watermelon seeds in the central province of Binh Thuan December 11 (Photo: nguoilaodong)

Earlier, the Danang Department of Health reported it had found the company’s watermelon seeds soaked with Rhodamine, a toxic substance which can cause cancer and is prohibited for use in food.


The health department together with representatives from the Sub-department of Food Hygiene and Safety and Market Management Sub-Department in Binh Thuan, took samples and sent them to the Ho Chi Minh City Institute of Hygiene and Public Health for tests.


Inspectors sealed off more than 80 tons of watermelon seeds in the company’s warehouse with 79 tons from China, and asked the company to temporarily halt business while waiting for the test results and a final decision from authorities.



 


Source: SGGP Bookmark & Share