Stories written by Daan Bauwens

Financial Transaction Tax Likely This Year

A recent proposal to introduce a European financial transaction tax was blocked by Britain. But with Germany and France committed to push ahead, many are confident a tax will be implemented before the end of this year.

A protester in Berlin demands restoration of subsidies for solar energy. Credit: Daan Bauwens/IPS.

The Sun Shines Less on Solar Power in Germany

Germany is capable of producing as much solar energy as the rest of the world together. But now the German government is proposing dramatic cuts in subsidies for solar panels. They say consumer demand is so high it can no longer support the technology.

Nadia El Fani. Credit: Daan Bauwens/IPS.

Arab Women Bring Spring to the Screen

Women have been at the forefront of each uprising in the Arab world. Last week, the ‘8 Arab Women Filmmakers’ festival offered a platform to Arab women directors to give their perspectives on the future of the region.

NGOs Urge “Solution from Within” For Somalia

While the international community discusses Somalia's future in London and Brussels, European and Somali non-governmental organisations are calling for a radical shift from a military to a humanitarian approach as the only solution to the country's war-torn condition.

EUROPE: Developing Nations Lose Billions to Multinational Tax Dodging

Not corruption but multinational tax dodging is the main reason why developing nations stay aid-dependent, says a new report. And while new proposals by the European Commission try to tackle the problem, they turn a blind eye towards tax havens.

EUROPE: ‘Agenda for Change’ Leaves Middle-Income Countries Out in the Cold

Last week the European Commission unveiled its ‘Agenda for Change’, a new policy framework outlining priorities for the European Union’s development aid and detailing the Commission’s renewed focus on economic growth as a means of poverty reduction, particularly in the world’s poorest countries.

EUROPE: Agriculture Proposals ‘Failing Development’

The new European Commission proposals on a Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) have dropped every reference to development obligations, NGOs point out. They will not stop the European Union from threatening food security in developing nations, they say.

DEVELOPMENT: EU Steps Towards Common Aid

The European Commission has decided to push for more ambitious reforms ahead of the aid effectiveness summit to be held in Busan later this year. The European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, is looking for a common EU position that could save the EU 4 billion euros which can be spent on additional aid.

DEVELOPMENT: ‘Boomerang Aid Enriches Donors’

Development aid is ineffective mostly because it is tied to contracts worth billions of dollars awarded to firms in developed countries in a phenomenon called boomerang aid, a new study says.

‘EU Needs to Tell Itself More About Development’

There is increasing political will now for a globalised strategy for the European Union to raise awareness about development, experts say. But at the same time, the European budget for education on development issues remains strikingly low.

EUROPE: Business Blocks Climate Targets

A crucial proposal to move to higher climate targets in the EU was resolutely voted down Tuesday after amendments by Conservatives heavily watered down the proposal. Several members of parliament blame business lobbying for the loss, even though dozens of corporations called out for higher climate goals.

ENVIRONMENT: Business Lobby Resists Ban on ‘Perverse’ Emissions – Part 2

For years, European governments and corporations have made use of a loophole in the Kyoto protocol on climate change to make exorbitant profits. According to some sources, this lucrative scheme has caused more pollution than ever before while lobbyists in Brussels have methodically undermined the European Commission's decision to put a stop to it.

ENVIRONMENT: Business Lobby Resists Ban on ‘Perverse’ Emissions – Part 1

For years, European governments and corporations have made use of a loophole in the Kyoto protocol on climate change to make exorbitant profits. According to some sources, this lucrative scheme has caused more pollution than ever before.

EUROPE: Investment Treaties Undemocratic

A proposal to put an end to the highly anti-democratic nature of the European Union’s Bilateral Investment Treaties was heavily watered down by a plenary voting in the European Parliament. However, in their current form the treaties may pose a serious risk for European democracy.

RELIGION-TURKEY: Alevi Future Bleak Despite Equality Moves

A political initiative to eliminate discrimination against the Alevi, Turkey’s main religious minority, risks being stymied by the Diyanet, the country’s powerful religious body that does not recognise anything but Sunni Islam.

CULTURE-TURKEY: Kurdish Directors Make ‘National’ Cinema

A ban on the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party in Turkey has not deterred Kurdish filmmakers from all over the globe gathering in this southeastern city to continue their struggle for recognition through cultural means.

Kurdish children on the streets of Diyarbakir Credit: Daan Bauwens/IPS

RIGHTS-TURKEY: Jailing Kurdish Children to Undermine Dissent

Turkey is signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, but that does not stop minors in the country's Kurdish dominated eastern and southeastern regions from ending up with stiff jail sentences.

TURKEY: NGOs Unite to Demand Say in Human Rights Bill

Turkey’s new human rights bill has a flaw – not a single rights group was consulted in the drafting.

MOROCCO: The Berber Dance Is Over

The satellite receiver has speeded up the process of wiping out the cultural heritage of Morocco's Berbers. Old traditions are now dying out under the influence of television imams.

MOROCCO: Western Sahara Drains Development

Informal talks are being held in Vienna between the different parties involved in the long lasting conflict over the Western Sahara. A new plan proposed by the Obama administration will be discussed between the Polisario and the Kingdom of Morocco.

The greening of Beni Mellal in Morocco. Credit: Daan Bauwens

MOROCCO: Farmers Overcome Water Scarcity

Researchers in the central Moroccan region Beni Mellal are introducing new agricultural techniques that increase production while reducing water usage.

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