Cities are economic and political powerhouses. The GDP of the state of New York is larger than that of Spain or South Korea. In Latin America, São Paulo state alone is richer than Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and Bolivia combined. Guangdong in China is wealthier than Russia or Mexico.

More than a deliberate choice, paradiplomacy is becoming an inevitable move.

Cities and states manage their own diplomatic networks. Critics assume that only regions that flirt with sovereignty are induced, by the nature of their internal struggles, to establish representations abroad. It’s true that Quebec, Catalonia and Scotland boast the widest and better-resourced diplomatic networks.

However, an increasing number of local governments have also seen the need to open representations in foreign countries to protect and advance their specific interests. For Canadian provinces, US states or German länder, this is a common foreign policy instrument.

Cities and states are also members of international organizations. There are approximately 125 multilateral arrangements of subnational governments.

These arrangements are growing at a rate that far exceeds the establishment of conventional national-state international organizations.

This is a very interering development that will bring a new paradigm and dimension to international cooperation creating  new opportunities. 

Read the interesting article here: WEF: Article
Source: World Economic Forum

I was delighted to get the monthly September statistics for this blog, ‘CapacityNow’ 

September was anothet fantastic month with 13.887 visitors!

I can only say that it is absolutely amazing that so many people visited my blog last month. 

These visitors came from more than 70 different countries. 

Thank you for reading my blog! Welcome back this month. 

The United Nations Security Council reached a surprisingly swift consensus Wednesday on its choice for the next secretary general of the United Nations: António Guterres, a former prime minister of Portugal.

Mr. Guterres, who ran the United Nations refugee agency for 10 years, had been the clear front-runner, and was apparently the choice of the otherwise deeply divided Security Council. 

Mr. Guterres, who will face a formal Council vote on Thursday morning, will have his name submitted to the 193-member General Assembly for approval. 

If elected, he will succeed the current secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, whose second five-year term expires at the end of this year. He would preside over the United Nations at a time when it has faltered in carrying out its chief mandate — to stop the scourge of war — and confronts an ever-widening rift between Russia and the West.

From the ‘Bosnian Luis Suárez’ to Milan’s wonderkid Gianluigi Donnarumma, English Newspaper The Guardian  identifies in its annual review some of the best young players born in 1999.

There are two Swedish players on the list, Joel Asoro and Alexander Isak. Both are great talents and the future of Swedish fotball. 

The Guardian: Future Talents of World Football

I am spending a few days in our office for Management Team meetings and other planning meetings.

We have projects all around the world. Since I travel a lot to our clients, partners and colleagues in countries in all regions, it is more and more important to visit the office when I can. 

It is important to meet and plan the strategy for the years to come. 

President John Dramani Mahama has revealed that steps are being taken by the government to re-introduce the operations of Black Star Line; the national shipping line that in the 1970’s was a key player in the transport of Ghana’s commodities to abroad. 

The re-introduction of the national shipping line, the President said, was to maximize the potentials of the port expansion projects being embarked on in the country. 

According to the President, plans are far advanced, hence the redevelopment and expansion of the ports ahead of it’s re-introduction to create jobs for the teeming unemployed youth. 

He explained that goods and services are cleared rapidly at the ports and there is the need for a national shipping carrier to facilitate these trades. 

President John Mahama made this revelation at the first anniversary celebrations of the implementation of the Single Window trade facility at the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) attended by George Blankson, Commissioner-General of GRA, the Finance Minister, his Deputy, Deputy Minister of Trade and the Minister of Transport in Accra. 

He maintained these were some of the measures being put in place by his administration to strategize and maximize the gains of the economy. 

He said the earnings of the prudent fiscal management of the economy is making the economy resilient in the West African sub-region hence the Moody ratings.

“We are in an election year but our fiscal management of the economy gave the International Monetary Fund the impetus to grant us another reprieve”. 

President Mahama said the ratings has stated that the recent upgrade from negative to stable by International rating firm is an indication that his government is doing something right. 

He said the partnership between West Blue Consulting Limited and the Customs Division of the GRA is an outstanding partnership with the private sector that has worked over the past one year in spite of the earlier misconceptions about the project in the media. 

He noted that the project is designed to strengthen the trading and economic performance of the country. 

He said the project is also helping the world to do business with the Customs division easily as recommended by the World Customs Organization and World Trade Organization. 

In all, the President together with the following individuals: Thomas Amanquandor, former Commissioner of Customs Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS), Fredrick Gavo, Deputy Commissioner and Yaw Boakye Agyemang in- charge of the Customs Technical Bureau received meritorious awards for their political foresight and instrumentality in setting up the Ghana National Single Window for Customs, which has revolutionize customs procedures and increased government revenues.

Article: Black Star

Source: GhanaWeb