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SERBIA: One-Dollar Steel Mill Exposes Cracks In Privatisation
by Vesna Peric ZimonjicInter Press Service
February 16th, 2012
In 2003, U.S. Steel bought up the bankrupt Sartid steel mill in the eastern Serbian town of Smederevo for $33 million, the first private enterprise to enter the country after the downfall of former leader Slobodan Milosevic in 2000. On Feb. 1, U.S. Steel sold the mill back for a dollar.

CHINA: Slump Tilts Priorities of Industry in China
by Jonathan AnsfieldNew York Times
April 18th, 2009
Less than a year ago, officials pressed mines and factories in northern China to shut down or move away to clear the air for the Beijing Olympics. Now, amid the global economic downturn, priorities have shifted. Cumbersome environmental reviews have been accelerated, and Chinaís powerful state oil companies are pushing hard to postpone nationwide rollout of clean air standards due to the billions of dollars required to invest in their refineries to produce clean diesel.

AFRICA/CHINA: As Chinese Investment in Africa Drops, Hope Sinks
by Lydia PolgreenNew York Times
March 25th, 2009
As global commodity prices have plummeted and several of Chinaís partners in Africa have stumbled deeper into chaos, China has backed away from some of its riskiest and most aggressive plans. China has sought to secure minerals in Africa through agreements to build huge projects in exchange for minerals. African governments are now realizing that these deals are loans against future revenue, and falling prices could leave them saddled with debt.

US: Mr. Whipple Left It Out: Soft Is Rough on Forests
by Leslie KaufmanNew York Times
February 25th, 2009
The U.S. obsession with soft toilet paper has driven the growth of brands like Cottonelle Ultra, Quilted Northern Ultra and Charmin Ultra. But fluffiness comes at a price: millions of trees harvested in North America and in Latin American countries, including some percentage of trees from rare old-growth forests in Canada.

JAPAN: Nissan to Slash Payroll, Pare Japanese Output
by John MurphyWall Street Journal
February 9th, 2009
Nissan Motor Co. Monday announced plans to slash more than 20,000 jobs world-wide, shift production out of Japan and seek government assistance from Japan, the U.S. and elsewhere, part of a broad new effort by the Japanese car maker to weather the economic downturn.

SWITZERLAND: Davos Scales Back Glitz
by Associated PressNew York Times
January 25th, 2009
The economic crisis that emerged out the collapse of securities based on shaky U.S. mortgages poses challenges for the Davos World Economic Forum, an arena that has championed market-driven approaches.

US: In Factory Sit-In, an Anger Spread Wide
by MONICA DAVEYNew York Times
December 7th, 2008
In a glimpse at how the nationís loss of more than 600,000 manufacturing jobs this year is boiling over, workers laid off from Republic Windows and Doors, said they would not leave, after company officials announced that the factory was closing. The workers were owed vacation and severance pay and were not given the 60 days of notice generally required by federal law in lay-offs.

EU: Glass Makers Are Fined $1.7 Billion in Europeís War on Price Fixing
by James KanterThe New York Times
November 12th, 2008
The European Commission fined companies controlling the Continentís auto glass market a record 1.4 billion euros ($1.77 billion), on Wednesday for price-fixing over five years.

US: An Inconvenient Bag
by ELLEN GAMERMAN Wall Street Journal
September 26th, 2008
It's manufactured in China, shipped thousands of miles overseas, made with plastic and could take years to decompose. It's also the hot "green" giveaway of the moment: the reusable shopping bag.

SOUTH AFRICA: Apartheid lawsuit back in US court
SABC News
September 25th, 2008
After six years of battling, the plaintiffs must prove whether certain multinationals enabled the apartheid government to commit acts of gross human rights violations. Among the 21 defendants are oil, vehicle and financial companies which continue to operate in South Africa -- the likes of BP, Shell, Chevron Texaco, Barclays, Daimler Chrysler and Rio Tinto. They stand accused of supporting the former regime with arms and ammunition, financing, fuel, transportation and military technology.

COLOMBIA: To die for
by Mark ThomasGuardian (UK)
September 20th, 2008
Being a trade union organiser in bottling plants used by Coca-Cola in Colombia is a dangerous business - they are prime targets for death squads. Can Coke be held responsible? Mark Thomas follows the trail from BogotŠ to New York

INDIA: India Grapples With How to Convert Its Farmland Into Factories
by Somini SenguptaNew York Times
September 17th, 2008
On the eve of opening a new auto factory in West Bengal, arranged via secret contract with the government, Indian industrial giant Tata is facing massive protests by local farmers determined not to be pushed off their land.

US: Files Show Governor Intervened With Court
by Ian UrbinaNew York Times
August 13th, 2008
West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin III filed a friend-of-the-court brief in June, arguing the State Supreme Court should review a $382 million judgment against DuPont. The case involves thousands of residents in the area of a DuPont-operated zinc-smelting plant, and the largest civil penalty ever levied against the company, for the dumping of toxic arsenic, cadmium and lead at the plant.

UK-Zimbabwe: BAE linked to Zimbabwean arms dealer
by Christopher Thompson and Michael Peel Financial Times/UK
July 31st, 2008
According to documents seen by the Financial Times, BAE Systems has been linked to Zimbabwean arms trader John Bredenkamp. BAE reportedly paid at least £20m to Bredenkamp via offshore entities in the British Virgin Islands between 2003 and 2005. The payments raise fresh questions about bribery in BAE's dealings.

US: Toxic Smoke and Mirrors
by Jim MorrisMother Jones
Filed in federal District Court in Cleveland, their claim joined thousands of others pending against welding-products manufacturers in state and federal courts. (Employers have not been among the targets because lawyers generally concluded they were ignorant of the metal's dangers.)

EUROPE: Chemical Law Has Global Impact
by Lyndsey LaytonWashington Post
June 12th, 2008
Europe this month rolled out new restrictions on makers of chemicals linked to cancer and other health problems. The changes follow eight years of vigorous opposition from the U.S. chemical industry giants like DuPont, and the Bush administration.

FRANCE: Ex-EADS chief charged in French probe
by INGRID ROUSSEAUAssociated Press
May 30th, 2008
A former co-CEO of Airbus parent company EADS, Noel Forgeard, was hit with preliminary insider trading charges Friday in an extensive probe into stock sales by more than a dozen former and current executives at the European planemaker.

US: BAE chief detained as US turns up heat in bribes case
by Nick Clark and Stephen FoleyThe Independent (U.K.)
May 19th, 2008
BAE Systems admitted yesterday that American authorities investigating corruption claims over an arms deal with Saudi Arabia had issued a series of subpoenas to senior executives, as the investigation continues to gather pace. Two bosses of the defence giant were also detained after they landed at a Houston airport last week

CHINA: In China City, Protesters See Pollution Risk of New Plant
by Edward WongNew York Times
May 6th, 2008
Residents took to the streets of Chengdu to protest a $5.5 billion ethylene plant under construction by PetroChina, reflecting a surge in environmental awareness by urban, middle-class Chinese determined to protect their health and the value of their property.

US: America for Sale: 2 Outcomes When Foreigners Buy Factories
by PETER S. GOODMANThe New York Times
April 7th, 2008
As foreign buyers descend upon the United States, capturing widening swaths of the industrial landscape and putting millions of Americans to work for new owners, these two cities offer sharply competing narratives for a nation still uneasy about being on the selling end of the global economy.

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