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Showing posts from January 1, 2017

A new dawn for Syria?(thehindu )

e ceasefire reached between Syria’s government and Opposition, with the mediation of Turkey, Russia and Iran, could be a turning point in the country’s civil war. Unlike the two previous failed ceasefires this year — which were negotiated between Russia and the U.S. — the latest one is sponsored by countries directly involved in the conflict. The positive reaction from both the Syrian regime and rebel commanders to the announcement of the ceasefire by Russian President Vladimir Putin also suggests that the warring parties are willing to give diplomacy a chance. For the Syrian government, this is an opportunity to announce it is ready for a peaceful settlement. Though President Bashar al-Assad has repeatedly claimed that he would retake the entire territory from the rebels, a military solution appears to be illusory. A prolonged conflict will exhaust the regime forces further and multiply the humanitarian costs. On the other side, after the victory in Aleppo, the regime could now nego…

Managing risk in banks (The Hindu.)

The Reserve Bank of India’s biannual Financial Stability Report has once again flagged the fact that risks to the banking sector remain worryingly “high”. That the risks have stayed “elevated due to continuous deterioration in asset quality, low profitability and liquidity,” in the central bank’s assessment, is cause for concern. Given the central role commercial lenders have in the financial system — serving to harness public savings and direct the flow of crucial credit to the most productive industrial and infrastructure sectors — any systemic risk to the banking industry has the potential to ripple across the entire economy. There has been no perceptible improvement in the health of domestic banks, even six months after the RBI’s previous report had highlighted the sector’s high vulnerability on account of the increase in capital requirement and worsening asset quality, spotlighting the need for urgent policy interventions. Some measures have been initiated and others are in the …