Hard Numbers: India bids for chipmakers, Nigeria rejects jabs, Lula surges in polls, US blacklists Chinese firms

Hard Numbers: India bids for chipmakers, Nigeria rejects jabs, Lula surges in polls, US blacklists Chinese firms
Gabriella Turrisi

10 billion: India will spend $10 billion to encourage semiconductor producers to set up shop there. PM Narendra Modi wants to pitch the country as a global electronics manufacturing hub amid an ongoing global shortage of semiconductors, an industry where Taiwan dominates the outsourcing business.


8: The Biden administration plans to ban US firms from investing in eight Chinese companies that it says are helping Beijing to repress Uyghurs in Xinjiang. One of the blacklisted firms is DJI, the world's largest manufacturer of commercial drones.

1 million: Nigeria, Africa's most populous country, will turn down some COVID vaccine donations with a short shelf life after one million doses expired. This is a recurring problem across the continent, where vax rates are still very low and doses often go to waste due to poor logistics and stubbornly high hesitancy to get the jab.

48: Almost half of Brazilians polled (48 percent) would vote for former president Lula da Silva if next year's election were held today. That's more than double the percentage that would support the incumbent, Jair Bolsonaro, who faces increasingly long re-election odds against Lula.

Empowering minority-owned businesses in 2022

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Does the EU really have a foreign policy?

For decades, European leaders have debated the question of whether Europe should have a common foreign policy that’s independent of the United States.

Germany, the UK, and countries situated closest to Russia have traditionally preferred to rely on membership in NATO and US military strength to safeguard European security at a cost affordable for them.

French leaders, by contrast, have argued that, with or without NATO, Europe needs an approach to foreign policy questions that doesn’t depend on alignment, or even agreement, with Washington.

There are those within many EU countries who agree that Europe must speak with a single clear voice if the EU is to promote European values and protect European interests in a world of US, Chinese, and Russian power.

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Will Political Polarization Stop Big Tech Regulation | Cyber In :60 | GZERO Media

Marietje Schaake, International Policy Director at Stanford's Cyber Policy Center, Eurasia Group senior advisor and former MEP, discusses trends in big tech, privacy protection and cyberspace:

Are we running out of time to regulate big tech?

And to that I would say yes and no. So let me explain. Yes, because especially in the US, the legislative responses to the outsized and growing power of big tech have been incredibly slow. Over the past several years, we have seen initiatives being drafted, but when it came to that point, the polarization between Democrats and Republicans have been running so deep that hardly any of the legislative ideas have actually come to adoption. And there's no real expectation that that will change soon. But we are not running out of time, but actually catching up, in the sense that elsewhere in the world, for example, in the EU, a series of proposals are being made and adopted. To foster more competition, to ensure greater responsibility from tech companies on content moderation, on AI, data, political ads, rights and principles, cybersecurity, and so on. And these proposals do add up to a shift in the status quo and certainly regulate the effects of big tech.

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The politics of US crime: Perception vs reality

A recent spate of violent crimes in New York City has made national headlines. Since Eric Adams was sworn in four weeks ago as mayor of America’s most populous city, violence on the streets — and the subways — has again become a major political focus. Things got even more heated this week, when two young cops were killed while responding to a domestic dispute in Harlem.

Crime is not only a dominant political issue in New York. It also resonates more broadly with American voters worried over increased lawlessness and unrest. Indeed, crime is already shaping up to be a wedge issue as Republicans vie to win control of the US Congress this November.

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Hard Numbers: South China Sea jet search, US economy surges, Cuban protesters charged, Africa gets vaxxed

FILE PHOTO of a F-35C Lightning II, assigned to the Argonauts of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 147, launches off the flight deck of Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) on Jan. 14, 2022.

U.S Navy/EYEPRESS

100 million: The US Navy is scrambling to find a $100 million F-35 stealth fighter jet that crashed and sank soon after taking off on Monday from an aircraft carrier in the South China Sea. One expert described the Cold War-ish race to locate the remains — stocked with classified equipment — before the Chinese do as "basically The Hunt For Red October meets The Abyss."

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The logo of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project is seen on a pipe at the Chelyabinsk pipe rolling plant in Chelyabinsk, Russia, February 26, 2020.

Nord Stream 2 used as a bargaining chip with Russia. The US now says that if Russia invades Ukraine, it’ll block the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which is set to transfer even more natural gas from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea. This is a big deal, considering that Germany – thirsty for more Russian gas – has long been pushing for the pipeline to start operating despite ongoing objections from Washington. The $11 billion energy project, which would double Russian gas exports to Germany, is seen as (a big) part of the reason why Berlin is reluctant to push back hard against the Kremlin over its troop buildup at the Ukrainian border. Still, German officials admit Nord Stream 2 could face sanctions if the Russians invade, suggesting that the Americans’ threat was likely coordinated with Berlin in advance. This comes amid ongoing diplomatic attempts to de-escalate the Ukraine crisis, with US President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz set to meet at the White House on February 7.

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Putin Has a “Noose” Around Ukraine, Says Russia Analyst Alina Polyakova | GZERO World

What’s going on in Vladimir Putin’s mind? That’s the million-dollar question.

Ukraine and Russia analyst Alina Polyakova doesn’t think it’s anything good.

Russia's president, she says, has put a “noose” around Ukraine with a troop build-up along the border that could spell invasion in the near term. The US has led an effort to deescalate the situation through diplomacy.

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The AI Addiction Cycle | GZERO World

Ever wonder why everything seems to be a major crisis these days? For former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, it's because artificial intelligence has determined that's the only way to get your attention.

What's more, it's driving an addiction cycle among humans that will lead to enormous depression and dissatisfaction.

"Oh my God there's another message. Oh my God, there's another crisis. Oh my God, there's another outrage. Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God," he says. "I don't think humans, at least in modern society where [we’ve] evolved to be in an 'Oh my God' situation all day."

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The AI addiction cycle

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