1. We, the Foreign Ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), met on 31 July 2019 at the 52nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) in Bangkok. We underlined the need to further strengthen cooperation and advance our partnership to ensure sustainability in all dimensions for ASEAN amidst the rapid changes in Southeast Asia and beyond. ASEAN COMMUNITY-BUILDING 2. We reaffirmed our commitment to the full and effective implementation of the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 and the ASEAN Leaders’ Vision Statement on Partnership for Sustainability. We reaffirmed the importance of maintaining ASEAN centrality and unity in our community-building efforts, engagement with external partners and regional architecture. We commended the ongoing work of all ASEAN Sectoral Bodies and Organs for progress in the implementation of the ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC), ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), and ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC) … [Read more...] about Joint Communique of 52nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting
This is the way the world ends
Monday is Tax Day, the due date for Americans to file their 2018 taxes. It also marks a milestone: the country has made it through a full year of President Donald Trump's new tax code -- and the first tax filing season under the new rules. Trump and his fellow Republicans promised their bill would cut taxes, make filing simpler and boost wages, business spending and the overall economy. Trump signed the most sweeping overhaul of the U.S. tax code in three decades into law on December 22, 2017 with zero Democratic votes. With year one in the books, it's fair to say some of those promises came true, some did not and some it's still too early to definitely say. Here's a rundown of what we know so far. 1. Promise: Your taxes will fit on a postcard. This didn't happen. The main form almost all tax filers fill out -- the 1040 -- did shrink. But much of the information that used to appear on the 1040 now appears on schedules, meaning a lot of taxpayers simply ended up filling out more … [Read more...] about Tax Day 2019: Did the GOP tax bill live up to its promises?
VietNamNet Bridge – André Laperrière, Executive Director of Global Open Data for Agriculture & Nutrition (GODAN), talks to Việt Nam News reporter Trong Kien on the role of data in smart, hi-tech agriculture and sustainable development. Workers cleaning and picking bananas for export at the banana farm Huy Long An in the southeastern province Tay Ninh’s Trang Bang District. — VNA/VNS Photo Le Duc Hoanh What is the goal of advocating open data? What we pursue is a global knowledge sharing system (using data as its main conduit) in order to maximise efficiency and quality of food systems, especially in Asia and in Africa, where lies the largest untapped potential. We want to combine the best of key stakesholders in the agriculture/nutrition data ecosystems – Governments, research institutions, private companies large and small, or farmers’ organisations, etc. – to combine their data and diverse expertise in order to … [Read more...] about Data could help Vietnam take the agriculture lead in a digital economy
Viet Nam News by Hồ Anh Thái His name was Ananda, and Ananda means satisfaction and bliss. One morning he went to the director of the factory that stood just outside his village and asked for a million rupees. This sum, he knew, would be large enough to build a great temple with a unique architectural design, the kind of temple that would lure droves of tourists to the village. Until now, tourists had passed by quickly, as if Ananda’s village were located in a wasteland. But the young director—he was the same age as Ananda—refused outright. Wasn’t India already overburdened with millions of temples, an abundance of gods, and a shortage of everything else? No, he would only donate a small contribution to the village charity fund. And when he said “small,” Ananda knew, the young director wasn’t simply being modest—he meant really small. Tiny. And as for the temple fund, the answer was “no.” And that was that. And … [Read more...] about The Man Who Stood On One Leg
IN THE taxi from Derry to Moville, the driver revealed he'd spent his wedding night 40 years ago in The Foyle Hotel where we were staying. He described his room as boasting a "granny bed" and patterned wallpaper. Those have long gone, but the welcome remains. Donegal means different things to different people – landscape, the smell of turf, escaping the Twelfth – but what the county does best is relaxation. Few places achieve r'n'r better than the newly reopened Foyle Hotel in Moville which would be the ideal place to spend a chilled New Year. Its proper name is The Foyle Hotel by Chef Brian McDermott, which is important as the whole 16-bedroom place bears his stamp. Discussing cocktails once my husband Michael and I had settled in, Brian said he'd like to see mindfulness extended to drinking. "Not in reducing how much you drink, but in terms of the approach. The lights are turned down, it should be a relaxed thing. You want to hug a good cocktail, then see how far the … [Read more...] about Breaks: Best of rest and relaxation at The Foyle Hotel by Chef Brian McDermott