Margin Definition

Singapore is a Meritocracy* [EXTRA LONG POST]

Singapore is a Meritocracy* [EXTRA LONG POST]
Edit: Thank you for all the comments and chat messages! I'm trying to go through each one. Writing thoughtful comments in the midst of having a full-time job is HARD WORK. I think I've missed a few questions, drop me a message if you're interested in continuing a discussion, I'm open to listening! There has been a lot of good comments, a few with great perspectives, and now I have a whole lot of things to read up on.
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Now that the 2020 General Election is firmly in our rear-view mirror, there is something that I have been meaning to write about: institutionalized racism affecting the minorities, especially the Malays, in Singapore. If you are groaning at this thinking you have been misled by this post’s title, I assure you that by the end of this post you will understand the caveat behind the above-mentioned title. I plead for a little of your time and patience.
We have seen many discussions online about majority privilege and systemic racism impacting the minorities. Many of you may have even participated in some of these discussions. I will not try to explain those terms for they have already been repeatedly debated to death. What this post aims to achieve is to bring to light Singapore’s history and government policies that have either benefited the majority race or kneecapped the minority race. Or both.
Why am I doing this?
It is frustrating to see some Singaporeans fully buying into the narrative that Singapore is a truly meritocratic society; that the government’s policies do not discriminate against minorities, or if a Singaporean worked hard enough he or she will succeed (whatever the definition of success is), or that we have anti-discriminatory laws that protect the minorities. Some even claim that the Malays enjoy special privileges due to Section 152 of the Constitution describing the special position of Malays, and that the Malays are blessed with free education in Singapore.
Section 152, “Special Position”, free education for all Malays?
Minorities and special position of Malays
152.—(1) It shall be the responsibility of the Government constantly to care for the interests of the racial and religious minorities in Singapore.
(2) The Government shall exercise its functions in such manner as to recognise the special position of the Malays, who are the indigenous people of Singapore, and accordingly it shall be the responsibility of the Government to protect, safeguard, support, foster and promote their political, educational, religious, economic, social and cultural interests and the Malay language.
The oft-mentioned Section 152 of the Constitution was an administrative continuation of previously existing colonial policy towards the Malays [Col: 126]. Regardless of the “special position” of the Malays, the only form of assistance rendered to the Malays was the policy of free education for all Malay students. This minimal approach of the government did little to improve the educational and socio-economic standing of the Malays as revealed by the 1980 national census. The free tertiary education policy was ultimately removed in 1990, despite opposition from Malays who questioned the constitutionality of its removal [col: 126].
With free education for all Malays, why haven’t their socio-economic and educational standings improved?
There are many factors to look at, and the issue goes way back to the colonial era so that’s where we shall start. The colonial administrators of Singapore, in their pursuit of capitalistic gains, had little use for the native inhabitants. The natives who were already living off their own land had no desire to work for the British as labourers. The British saw this unwillingness to work for them as indolence, and ascribed many other negative cultural stereotypes to the locals [pdf]. Nailing home the capitalistic intent of colonial presence in Singapore, the British Director of Education R. O. Winstedt explained their policy for education for the natives in 1920 [pg. 2]:
"The aim of the government is not to turn out a few well-educated youths, nor a number of less well-educated boys; rather it is to improve the bulk of the people, and to make the son of a fisherman or a peasant a more intelligent fisherman or peasant than his father had been, and a man whose education will enable him to understand how his lot in life fits in with the scheme of life around him".
And in 1915, a British resident revealed the colonial attitude towards education [pg. 3]:
"The great object of education is to train a man to make a living.... you can teach Malays so that they do not lose their skill and craft in fishing and jungle work. Teach them the dignity of manual labour, so that they do not all become krannies (clerks) and I am sure you will not have the trouble which has arisen in India through over education"
The type and quality of education that the British set up for the native inhabitants show that they had no intentions to empower the locals with skills for a new economy. The education provided, while free, was to make sure the locals were kept out of trouble for the British, and remain subservient to the colonial causes. Further impeding the socio-economic status of Malays, the British actively discouraged Malays in switching from agricultural production to more lucrative cash crops, preventing the building of wealth among the Malay communities (Shahruddin Ma’arof, 1988: 51). In contrast to the British suppression of the buildup of Malay wealth and provision of vernacular education, Chinese businessmen, clan associations and Christian missionaries established Chinese schools where students were taught skills like letter-writing and the use of the abacus. By the turn of the 20th century, the curriculum in these Chinese-language schools expanded to include arithmetic, science, history and geography while Malay-language schools under Winstedt’s educational policies focused on vernacular subjects such as basket-weaving.
So, when Singapore attained self-governance, did things get better?
Discontent with the education system and social inequalities was already a big issue in the mid 1950s that the parties that contested for the Legislative Assembly championed for reforms to social issues like better education systems, housing subsidies and workers rights.
The People’s Action Party (PAP) won the 1959 Legislative Assembly general elections by running on a rather progressive platform of low-cost housing, improvement of employment opportunities for locals and a stronger education. They also campaigned for abolishing the inequality of wealth in their election manifesto (Petir, 1958: 2), with PAP chairman Dr Toh Chin Chye expressing his disgust at seeing “so many of our people reduced to living like animals because under the present social and economic system, the good things of life are for the ruthless few, those who believe that the poor and the humble are despicable failures.”
With the PAP in power, assurances were made to Singaporeans that no community would be left behind. In 1965, Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew promised aid specifically to help raise the economic and education levels of the Malays. In 1967 during a mass rally at Geylang Serai, PM Lee again promised that “the Government with the support of the non-Malays are prepared to concentrate more than the average share of our resources on our Malay citizens [pdf].” He emphasized the importance of lifting all sections of the community to an even footing, reasoning that “if one section of the community were to lag behind it would harm the unity and integrity of the nation” (Bedlington, 1974: 289).
Despite these promises to help the minorities narrow the inequality gap, very little was done to realize it. Instead, the government took a ruthless approach towards economic growth, sparing no expense. Deputy Prime Minister Goh Keng Swee explained the government’s main concern was “to generate fast economic growth by any and every possible means. . . . If unequal distribution of income induced greater savings and investment . . . then this must be accepted as the price of fighting unemployment.” (Goh, 1972: 275)
By the late 1970s, a strong shift in parents’ preference towards an English-medium education for their children had resulted in a rapid decline in the number of vernacular schools.
Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, there was a shift of parents’ preference towards educating their child in the English stream. This shift, together with a period of minimal intervention in terms of educational policy and assistance to the minorities by the government, caused the number of enrolments in vernacular schools to rapidly decline. The socio-economic gap also widened between the Malays and Chinese, as the Chinese community enjoyed greater occupational mobility relative to the minorities. This can be seen in the shift in the lower manual occupation category, from a relatively equal proportion in 1957 to a 10 percent difference in 1980 [Table A]. In 1980, the average Malay household income was only 73.8 percent of the average Chinese household income. The income gap widened considerably by 1990, where the average Malay household income dropped to 69.8 percent of the average Chinese household income [Table B] (Rahim, 1998: 19-22). Decades after the lofty promises were made by the government, the Malay community’s slide into marginality continued.
Table A

Table B
Wait, the gap got bigger? Did the government do anything?
In 1979, Education Minister Dr Goh Keng Swee with the Education Study Team released a report on the Ministry of Education, more widely known as the Goh Report. The team was made up of 13 members, most of them systems analysts and economists, and none of whom ‘possess much knowledge or expertise on education’ (Goh Report, 1979: 1). The all-Chinese team excluded social scientists and educationalists, as the Education Minister had little regard for their expertise (Rahim, 1998: 121). The Goh Report made recommendations for radical changes to the educational system, recommendations which then became the basis of the New Education System (NES).
During a time when Tamil, Malay and Chinese schools were getting closed down due to declining enrolment numbers due to the popularity of English medium ones, the Special Assistance Plan (SAP) was introduced in 1978 to preserve and develop nine Chinese schools into bilingual (Mandarin and English) schools while retaining the values and traditions of a Chinese school. As part of the NES, these schools were to be the only ones to offer the Special course which the top 10 percent scorers of the PSLE are eligible to opt for. With these schools getting more resources, better facilities and the best teachers, the SAP contradicts the multi-racial principle of giving equal treatment to the non-English language streams. This exclusivity and the elite status of SAP schools affords its students better opportunities and advantages that are virtually out of reach for many minorities in Singapore. Effectively, the SAP is an institutionalized form of ethnic/cultural favouritism (Rahim, 1998: 130)
The NES also introduced early streaming for students which further exacerbated existing inequalities. Despite primary school education being free for all Singaporeans, families with better financial means have a huge advantage in preparing their child for streaming through additional tuition and better preschool choices#. (Barr & Low, 2005: 177) As we have seen from the disparity in household incomes between the Chinese and Malays, early streaming served to widen the gap between the haves and have-nots. The have-nots, more often than not, find themselves in the lower streams, trapped with very limited options providing upward social mobility. They will have to face an insurmountable task to lift themselves and their future generations out of their current predicament.
In 1982, the PAP slogan “a more just and equal society” was quietly dropped from the party’s constitution. This signaled an end to the socialist ideals that the party built its identity upon.
Why? It can’t be that the government favours one race over another...can it?
Examining the PAP leadership’s attitude towards the different cultures and ethnicities is key to understanding what the government values and how these values shaped its policies. Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew, as quoted in the Goh Report, extolled the values of East Asian philosophies: "The greatest value in the teaching and learning of Chinese is in the transmission of the norms of social or moral behaviour. This means principally Confucianist beliefs and ideas, of man [sic], society and the state" (Goh, 1979: v). The government’s championing of SAP schools and ‘Chinese values’ is also complemented by the launch of ‘Speak Mandarin Campaign’ in 1979.
In 1991, Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong espoused similar values as his predecessor, praising the virtues of ‘Confucian dynamism’ and claiming that Singapore would not be able to thrive and prosper without the Confucian core values of thrift, hard work and group cohesion. The fear of erosion of the Chinese cultural identity was never matched with a similar concern for the erosion of minority cultural identities, where the minorities were “expected to submit to a form of partial or incomplete assimilation into a Chinese-generated, Chinese-dominated society.#” (Barr & Low, 2005: 167)
On top of favouring Chinese cultural values and identities, the PAP leadership associated the cultures of the minorities with negative connotations. Speaking about a Malay who did well in business, Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew described the man as “acting just like a Chinese. You know, he’s bouncing around, running around, to-ing and fro-ing. In the old culture, he would not be doing that” (Han, et al., 1998: 184). In a Straits Times article on 26 June 1992, SM Lee also implied that the Chinese are inherently better at Maths, and that "If you pretend that the problem does not exist, and that in fact (the Malays) can score as well as the Chinese in Maths, then you have created yourself an enormous myth which you will be stuck with.+"
These attitudes from the ruling elite translated into more policies that preserved the advantage of the majority. When faced with the “pressing national problem”* of a declining birth-rate of the Chinese, the government took steps to ensure Chinese numerical dominance in Singapore. The Singapore government encouraged the immigration of skilled workers from countries like Hong Kong, Korea, and Macau, countries which were accorded the status of ‘traditional sources’ of foreign labour (Rahim, 1998: 72). Meanwhile, showing the government’s preference and/or dislike for specific groups of people, Malaysian Malays faced great difficulty in getting work permits. (“‘Harder’ for bumiputras to get S’pore work permits.+”, The Straits Times, 7 Mar 1991)
Another policy which worked to preserve the advantage of the majority was the urban resettlement programmes of the 1960s and 1970s. This resulted in the dissolution of the Malay electoral strongholds in the east, undermining the organic growth of Malay political grassroots. When it became apparent in the 1980s that the Malays were moving back to the traditional Malay residential areas, an ethnic residential quota, labelled the Ethnic Integration Policy, was implemented. The rationale behind the quota was to ensure a balanced racial mix, purportedly for racial harmony. However, this rationale does not stand up to scrutiny in the face of numerous academic studies on interethnic urban attitudes and relations**. Another consequence of the policy is the reinforcement of racial segregation when taking into account the income disparity between the races. Underlining the weakness of the government’s reasoning, constituencies like Hougang were allowed to remain Chinese residential enclaves despite its population being approximately 80 percent Chinese. (Rahim, 1998: 73-77)
Perhaps the most controversial policy introduced was the Graduate Mothers Scheme. It was introduced in 1983 to reverse the trend of falling fertility rates of graduate women versus the rising birth-rate of non-graduate women***. In a push to encourage graduate mothers to get married and have children, Deputy Prime Minister Dr Goh Keng Swee unveiled a suite of incentives; all-expenses paid love-boat cruises for eligible graduate singles in the civil service, a computer dating service, fiscal incentives, and special admissions to National University of Singapore (NUS) to even out the male-female student ratio#. At the other end of the spectrum, lesser-educated women were encouraged to have smaller families in a scheme called the Small Family Incentive Scheme. This was achieved by paying out a housing grant worth S$10,000 to women who were able to meet the following set of conditions: be below 30 years of age, have two or less children, educational level not beyond secondary school, have a household income totalling not more than S$1,500 and willing to be sterilized#.
Based on the average household income statistics, a simple deduction could be made that those eligible for the sterilization programme were disproportionately from the minority communities.
Isn’t that eugenics?
Yes. Singapore had a government-established Eugenics Board.
The graduate mothers and sterilization programmes were greatly unpopular and were ultimately abandoned or modified after the PAP’s mandate took a 12.9 percent hit in the 1984 general election. However that did not mean that eugenics stopped being an influence in policy-making.
In his 1983 National Day address, PM Lee stated that when it comes to intelligence, “80 per cent is nature, or inherited, and 20 per cent the differences from different environments and upbringing.” This is telling of the role that eugenics, biological determinist and cultural deficit theories played in the formation of PAP policies.
To further safeguard Singapore from “genetic pollution” (Rahim, 1998: 55, Tremewan, 1994: 113), the Ministry of Labour in 1984 issued a marriage restriction between work permit holders and Singaporeans. The work permit holder would have his work permit cancelled, be deported and be permanently barred from re-entering Singapore if he were to marry a Singaporean or permanent resident without obtaining prior approval. Approval from the Commissioner for Employment would only be given if the work permit holder possesses skills and qualifications of value to Singapore.
Doesn’t sound to me like the government targets any particular race with its policies.
Deputy Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in 1987 rationalized that certain posts in the Singapore Armed Forces had been closed to Malays for "national security" reasons. He claimed that this policy was implemented to avoid placing Malays in an awkward position when loyalty to nation and religion came into conflict. PM Lee also added that the Malays behaved more as Malay Muslims than as loyal Singaporeans. PM Lee and DPM Lee’s statements finally made explicit what many suspected to have been an implicit rule. It could be observed that, despite being overrepresented in the civil service, Malays tend to stay in the lower-to-middle rungs of organizations like the SAF. It is also noteworthy that, to date, no Malay has held important Cabinet portfolios such as Minister of Defence, Minister of Home Affairs, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Minister of Trade and Industry.
The conflation of loyalty to the country with approval of the ruling party proved to be patently flawed, as studies by the Institute of Policy Studies (ST, 30 Sept 1990: 22; IPS, 2010) indicate that Singaporean Malays showed a stronger sense of national pride and identification compared to the other major ethnic groups. The study also found that Citizen-Nation Psychological Ties (CNP) scores, that is, national loyalty, weakens with: higher socio-economic status, Chinese, youth, and political alienation. Even when the Malays have been historically disenfranchised, they were found to be proud to be Singaporeans, loyal to Singapore and more willing to sacrifice for the nation than the other ethnic groups.
Additionally, Minister of Defence and Deputy Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong threatened to withhold aid to the Malay self-help organization Mendaki in 1988. The threat was issued over an incident during election night where several Malays in a crowd of Workers Party supporters had jeered at PM Goh at a vote counting centre. It became apparent from this incident that any aid offered by the government was tied to loyalty to the PAP instead of it being the duty of the government to serve Singaporeans regardless of party affiliation^^.
There have always been Malay PAP Members of Parliament (MP), did they not help fight for these issues?
The Malay PAP MPs are in the unique position of having to represent not only people of their constituents but also the rest of the Malay Singaporeans while toeing the party line. With many of the government policies being unhelpful towards the Malays, it is near impossible to fulfill this role satisfactorily. PAP MPs Ahmad Haleem (Telok Blangah) and Sha’ari Tadin (Kampong Chai Chee, Bedok) were both made to enjoy early retirements from their political careers for bringing up “sensitive” issues of the Malay community^^^. This set the tone for future PAP Malay MPs to remain unquestioningly in step with the leadership, regardless of their personal agreement, in order to have a long career within the party. Today, Malay PAP MPs have continued with the trend of parroting PAP policies that ran against the interests of the Malay/Muslim community (e.g. Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli and Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Yaacob Ibrahim with regards to the tudung issue).
What about the Mendaki and the Tertiary Tuition Fee Subsidy (TTFS)?
The policy providing free education for all Malays was ended in 1990 despite opposition from the Malays and the opposition party[Col: 126]. In its place, Mendaki introduced TTFS in 1991 to subsidise the cost of tertiary education in local institutions for those living in low household income. Due to the long history of marginalization and the widening of the inequality gap, the number of Malays who were able to make it to tertiary education institutions, especially in local universities, have been disproportionately low compared to the other ethnic groups. As such, the number of students able to benefit from this subsidy is even lower.
It was only recently, 20 years after the introduction of the subsidy, that the criteria for eligibility underwent revision. The revision takes into account the size of the family of the applicant, allowing for more Malay students to benefit from it. However, this subsidy is only one measure in an attempt to ensure that Malays students who were able to qualify for tertiary education are able to do so. Short of totally ditching streaming, more care, thought and resources are needed to lift the quality and accessibility of education for the Malays, especially in the early years of a child’s education.
So what needs to happen now?
Singaporeans, especially politicians, need to move on from making assertions similar to what PM Lee had made in 1987, that the "problem is psychological . . . if they try hard enough and long enough, then the education gap between them and the Chinese, or them and the Indians, would close. . . . Progress or achievement depends on ability and effort." It is important for Singaporeans to recognize the nearly Sisyphean task faced by marginalized communities in improving their socio-economic standing. Handicapped right from the start, their perceived failures in our “meritocratic” society should not be judged as an indictment of their efforts, but influenced in no small measure by the failings of the state in dragging their feet to take action. As a community, Singaporeans need to actively combat negative stereotyping, and move away from policies that were rooted in eugenics. Government intervention into ensuring unbiased, fair hiring practices would also help in raising the standing of the marginalized minorities. It would be impossible for Singapore to live up to its multiracial, meritocratic ideals without making fundamental changes to the above mentioned policies.
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# Academic journal behind a paywall. Most tertiary institutions should have partnerships with these journals, so you are likely able view them if you have a student email address.
+ Online scan of the article is unavailable
\* The declining birth-rate of the Chinese was one of three pressing national problems, according to PM Lee in a National Day rally speech in 1988; the others being education and the growing number of unmarried graduates [at approx 29 mins].
\* From Lily Zubaidah Rahim’s* The Singapore Dilemma (1998: 76-77): Rabushka’s (Rabushka, Alvin (1971), ‘Integration in Urban Malaya: Ethnic Attitudes Among Malays and Chinese’, 91-107) study found that it was common for people living in ethnically homogeneous areas to adopt favourable attitudes towards other ethnic groups. People who resided in ethnically mixed areas but did not mix with other ethnic groups were also found to hold negative attitudes towards others. He postulated that physical proximity coupled with superficial interaction across ethnic lines may in fact lead to heightened contempt for other ethnic groups. Urban studies (Fischer, Claude (1976), The Urban Experiment*) have similarly found that close physical distance of different ethnic groups does not necessarily result in narrowing the social distance between the communities. Indeed, physical ethnic proximity in large cities may well engender mutual revulsion and a heightening of ethnocentrism. These research findings have been corroborated by several Singaporean studies (Hassan, Riaz (1977),* ‘Families in Flats: A Study of Low Income Families in Public Housing’; Lai, Ah Eng (1995), ‘Meanings of Multiethnicity: A Case Study of Ethnicity and Ethnic Relations in Singapore’) which have found interethnic relations in the ethnically integrated public housing flats to be relatively superficial.
\** In the same article, PM Lee drew a straight line connecting the Malays with lower educational levels in this line of rhetoric questioning: “Why is the birth rate between the Malays, and the Chinese and Indians so different? Because the educational levels achieved are also different.”*
^ The stronger representation of Malays in civil service and Western multinational corporations was likely due to the difficulty in seeking employment in local firms. Prevalence of negative stereotyping of Malays meant that a Malay job applicant has to be much better qualified to be considered for a job in a local firm (Rahim, 1998: 25). A recent study into this phenomenon can be found here#.
^^ The PAP’s quid pro quo policy was put under the spotlight again in 2011, when PM Lee made it clear that the government’s neighbourhood upgrading programmes prioritised PAP wards over opposition wards.
^^^ PAP MP Ahmad Haleem raised the “sensitive” issue of the government’s exclusionary policy towards Malays in National Service, which adversely affected socio-economic standing of the Malay community [Col: 144]. PAP MP Sha’ari Tadin was actively involved in Malay community organizations and helped to organize a 1971 seminar on Malay participation in national development (Rahim, 1998: 90).
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Recommended Reading:
The Myth of the Lazy Native: A study of the image of the Malays, Filipinos and Javanese from the 16th to the 20th century and its function in the ideology of colonial capitalism [pdf].
The Singapore Dilemma: The Political and Educational Marginality of the Malay Community.
Eugenics on the rise: A report from Singapore#.
Assimilation as multiracialism: The case of Singapore’s Malay#.
Racism and the Pinkerton syndrome in Singapore: effects of race on hiring decisions#.
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References:
Bedlington, Stanley (1974), The Singapore Malay Community: The Politics of State Integration, Ph.D. thesis, Cornell University.
Chew, Peter K.H. (2008), Racism in Singapore: A Review and Recommendations for Future Research, James Cook University, Singapore.
Fook Kwang Han, Warren Fernandez, Sumiko Tan (1998) Lee Kuan Yew, the Man and His Ideas, Singapore Press Holding.
Goh, Keng Swee (1972), The Economics of Modernization and Other Essays, Singapore: Asia Pacific Press.
Michael D. Barr & Jevon Low (2005) Assimilation as multiracialism: The case of Singapore's Malays, Asian Ethnicity, 6:3, 161-182, DOI: 10.1080/14631360500226606
Rahim, Lily Z. (1998), The Singapore Dilemma: The political and educational marginality of the Malay community, Kuala Lumpur, Oxford University Press.
Shaharuddin Ma’aruf (1988), Malay Ideas on Development: From Feudal Lord to Capitalist, Times Book International, Singapore.
Tremewan, Christopher (1994), The Political Economy of Social Control in Singapore, London, Macmillan.
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What is the Stand-Up India Scheme? All Your Burning Questions Answered Here

Stand-up India Scheme
Looking for an MSME Loan designed for women and SC/ST entrepreneurs for setting up a Greenfield Enterprise in India?
You have landed at the right place. This page contains all the information you will need on Stand-up India Loan Scheme.
Setting up a new business can be challenging in many ways. But getting funds for a business that has not been established or even started is the biggest one of them all. Keeping this in mind, the Indian Govt. has created a few programmes for different groups of people to help them get financial assistance in setting up a new business. Stand-up India, Mudra loan and Start-up India scheme are three of the most successful initiatives in this direction.
On this page, we are going to focus on the Stand-up India scheme.
What is the Stand-Up India Scheme?
Stand-up India is an initiative of the Indian government, started in 2016, to offer support to women and SC/ST entrepreneurs to start a new business. Under this scheme, eligible entrepreneurs can avail bank loans up to Rs. 1 crore for setting up a new business in the manufacturing, trading and services sector. In case of non-individual enterprises, at least 51% of the shareholding and controlling stake should be held by women or people from the SC/ST community. Please do not confuse this with the Start-Up India scheme which is a different initiative by the Indian govt. to offer a host of tax benefits to enterprises that are recognised as start-ups.
What are the Eligibility Criteria for the Stand-up India Scheme?
The Stand-up India loan scheme is meant for encouraging people from the SC/ST category and women entrepreneurs to set up greenfield enterprises (new business) in the manufacturing, services or trading sector. In case of non-individual enterprises, at least 51% of the company stakes should be held by women or people in the SC/ST category. The applicant must be above 18 years of age.
What are the Features of the Stand-up India Scheme?
Some of the important features of the Stand-up India scheme have been mentioned here:
· Loan Amount: The minimum loan amount sanctioned by Indian banks for this scheme is Rs. 10 lakh while the maximum loan amount is Rs. 1 crore. The actual loan amount offered is decided by the bank on a case-to-case basis after carefully accessing the application
· Interest Rate: The interest rate applicable for this loan is decided by the bank offering the scheme. However, keeping with the Stand-up India guidelines, it cannot exceed the sum of 1-year Marginal Cost of Funds based Lending Rate (MCLR), a factor of 3% and Tenure Premium
· Repayment & Moratorium: The Stand-up India loans have a maximum repayment period of 84 months after the end of moratorium period. The maximum repayment holiday period offered for this loan scheme is 18 months
· Security Needed: These loans can be secured with collateral as prime security or Credit Guarantee Fund Scheme for Stand-up India Loans (CGFSIL) coverage. CGFSIL is a special scheme started by the Govt. of India to provide a guarantee to loans extended under the Stand-Up Loans scheme
· Borrower Contribution to Total Cost (Margin Money): The bank may take anywhere from 10% to 25% margin for these loans (Note: Margin money refers to the amount the borrower contributes to the overall amount required. The bank will cover the rest. So, if the total amount needed is Rs. 20 lakh, you will have to contribute 20% which comes to Rs. 4 lakh. The bank will provide the balance of Rs. 16 lakh.)
Which Indian Banks Offer Stand-up India Loans?
Indian Banks that offer Stand-up India loans are:
A Final Word
Now that you know about Stand-up India Loans, you might want to know more details about Stand-up India loan schemes offered by different Indian banks. Please visit our MSME Loans page for details.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. All details provided here are correct as on the publishing date of this post. Please check with official sources before taking any investment or related decisions.
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Progress Report 51: Yes, Prime Minister (UK Pt. 1)

Hello, and welcome to Progress Report 51 for Calm Before the Storm. Today, we’ll be taking a look at the United Kingdom’s Peacetime Political Content. The PR schedule for the UK will be as follows:
The UK in 1933 starts under the eyes of King George V and Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald’s (National Labour Organization) Second National Government:
Though the PM is from the Social Democrat party (NLO), the government was largely dominated by members of the Conservative and Unionist Party, commonly known to us as the Conservatives.
The UK starts with the following national spirits:
Pacifism: The terror of the First World War caused anti-war sentiments and pacifism to skyrocket in popularity, leading to a strong lack of support for intervention in Europe:
The Great Depression: As you may know, the collapse of the American stock market had a similarly devastating effect on the British Economy, leading to the fall of the Second MacDonald Ministry (Labour Government) and the abandonment of the gold standard. However, by 1933, the economy had troughed and was slowly on its way back up. Subsequent governments had engaged on a rough austerity program that continues into the game’s start.
The Sun Never Sets: Britain in 1933 boasts the largest colonial empire in history. As such, profits from the colonies are represented by making more consumer goods available for you, and the ability to conscript natives are represented as recruitable population. However, as the UK found out post-war, maintaining such a large empire is expensive.
Welfare Spending: This is the first of the three parliamentary modifiers, which you may recognize from Progress Report 49. The UK uses the same parliamentary mechanics as Weimar Germany, meaning that changes in policy can be represented as a change in these dynamic modifiers. In 1933, the austerity program meant that relatively little was being spent on welfare.
Revenue and Stimulus: This modifier represents combined revenue (taxes and tariffs) and stimulus spending. Thus, the modifier starts with a positive value as relatively little is being spent on output due to austerity, but the government is taking in much more from taxes and tariffs.
Defense Spending: Like welfare, relatively little is being spent on defense at this moment.
Let’s meet the parties!
Parliament:
Instead of starting with the focuses, we will be starting with the House of Commons:
The House is programmed to show only those parties who have seats, so if, for example, the Communists gain seats (which they are programmed to in 1935), they will show up as having them. However, if they lose those seats, they will disappear. As you can see, the National Government has such an overwhelming coalition that for the first couple of years in the game, you cannot fail to pass any laws. Please see earlier progress reports to learn about Parliaments.
Finance Acts are only available for the given year. Unlike in other nations, British laws cost less and take less time to complete, as there is a very high volume of them. Other acts will become visible as you take the focuses in the tree.
The Trees:
We will start with the National Government Tree which should last you until the 1935 election. Now, very little happens in the UK in terms of parliamentary policy until the Government of India act (which will be handled by the colonial policy tree), so these might seem like filler, though there are important acts that lay the groundwork for further reforms. Unlike in Weimar Germany, multiple laws can be tied to a single focus. For example, the Legal Reform focus offers six focuses that bleed into the post-election period These laws will become available about 1-2 months before they were enacted (as written on the documents themselves). You can take the focuses at any time, though the laws will not necessarily show up immediately. The AI will only take the focuses at an appropriate time. Reforms in Scotland is a vital focus to take here, as it allows you to enact other laws relating to Scotland There are other smaller focuses, such as “Prevent Animal Abuse” and “The Petroleum Production Act”. All these focuses except for the header unlock laws rather than directly affecting your country. This includes those focuses with a single law, such as “Married Women’s Rights” or “Amend the British Nationality Act”.
These should take you up to the 1935 election. This is the only election event, and will be used for all elections. Note that the text and results are dynamic. You do not get to directly choose the results of the election. Instead, the game will automatically reallocate seats in the House of Commons, and the winner is chosen from there. If the Conservatives have more seats, then they will declare victory. If Labour has more seats, then they will have won. Only the CUP and Labour can win elections. The UK’s voting system, first-past-the-post, strongly favors large parties as it gives the constituency to the candidate with the most votes regardless of vote share. As such, to properly model the UK’s electoral system, the algorithm in-game is heavily biased towards Labour and the CUP. These are the seats reallocated using the popularities at start. Note that in 1935, and 1935 only, the CPGB, ILP, and IL are scripted to get their historical amount of seats at minimum regardless of popularity.
As the Conservatives won the election, the Conservative Tree is opened up. The Conservatives will try to enact their historical legislation between 1935 and the start of the war in 1939, as well as three fictional laws at the bottom. The laws, like in the National Government tree, are roughly arranged in order of year, but are grouped together when it is appropriate. The Conservatives are interested in democratic and pro-worker reforms, but at a far more cautious rate than Labour. As you can see, major pieces of legislation receive their own focuses. At the bottom, you have the three fictional focuses. Here are three examples of laws. Here is an [example of an effect]https://i.imgur.com/unpvda8.png. National spirits are a rare consequence of an act. This is a more common set of effects.
If Labour is elected, they will of course have their own tree. You might notice that some of these focuses overlap with the Conservative tree. Said focuses either include more laws or will be automatically bypassed if the Conservative version of the focus is already complete. Labour will largely attempt to enact legislation from their victory in 1945 to 1950. This is allowable because the actions of the two Attlee Ministries largely match their 1934 program. However, what if Labour is elected early? In this case, the game will record when Labour is first elected, and use that as a starting point for all the laws. Therefore, if Labour is elected 10 years early, the laws will be scheduled for 10 years earlier. If Labour is elected 5 years early, the laws will be scheduled for 5 years earlier, etc. Labour will want to reverse Conservative restrictions on strike actions and improve education. However, their primary goal is the nationalization of resources and utilities. This includes the nationalization of Coal, Electricity, Transport, Water (which was actually done by the Caretaker government in 1945 but is included here if it is not done earlier), hospitals (the NHS), communications, and the Bank of England. You might notice that labour has far more laws than the Conservatives do. This is accurate to what happened historically. Whereas the House of Commons may have enacted 14 laws on average between 1933 and 1938 (inclusive), Labour enacted 22 between 1946 and 1950 (inclusive). However, after Labour takes both nationalization focuses, and are still in power six years later, they will get this event. In short, it is a proposal to introduce elements of democratic management into state-owned workplaces. An act will be slated to unlock for seven years after Labour is first elected to this effect. Of course, refusing it might be better if you’re starved for political power
Event Chains
The UK has received several event chains to provide a sense of political development as a supplement to the focus tree. We’ll go over them now.
We’ll start with the Labour Party chain. In a gameplay sense, since you cannot directly choose a Labour victory, this chain is one of the mechanisms used to allow a player to go down the Labour path. As a result, a player who wishes to remain Conservative now has greater impetus to complete the National Government tree. The chain starts with the 1934 London City Council election, in which the Conservatives lost control for the first time in thirty years. The LCC will immediately get to work improving infrastructure and services. However, these projects will cost money, and Labour will soon run out the 2M pounds in the treasury. Concurrently, Labour will adopt a new platform at their 1934 conference. This platform would be the basis of the policies of the Attlee Ministries, and thus the Labour path in-game. If fascism continues to expand into Europe, then Labour will to pressure their leader, the arch pacifist George Lansbury to resign. If fascism does not continue to expand into Europe, then he will remain. Otherwise, Labour will want to take the party in an actively anti-fascist direction, which forces them to abandon pacifism (though they officially maintained an anti-war position in opposition to Conservative policy). Labour will then soon hold its leadership election. There are three possible Labour Leaders: Clement Attlee, deputy party leader; Herbert Morrison, leader of the LCC; and Arthur Greenwood, the former minister of health. The winner is determined randomly.
Related to the Labour Chain, the Pacifism sub-chain will begin in February 1933 with the King and Country Debate. A few years later, this will be followed up by the Peace Ballot, a poll conducted by the League of Nations Union.
The Socialist League subchain details the story of the eponymous Socialist League, a left-wing faction within Labour. The League wanted to bring Labour into cooperation with the ILP and the CPGB, which was rejected by the party at large. Note that this happens in 1937, and Labour will have the opportunity to entertain this proposal, though nothing will come of it. The Socialist League dissolved soon after.
The British Union of Fascists chain begins in early 1934, when the Daily Mail prints a headline declaring “Hurrah for the Blackshirts!” Lord Rothermere was a personal friend of Mussolini and Hitler, and was thus enthusiastic at a properly fascist party in the UK. However, this is where the BUF peaks, as support will steadily decline as the Blackshirts engage in thuggery and violence at events, culminating at the Olympia Rally. The chain will pick back up again in 1936, as Mosley announces a march through the East End. Stepney residents appealed to higher authorities, both inside and outside the government, but ultimately, they had to organize themselves. These efforts were led by the Jewish People’s Council and Communist Party MP Phil Piratin. Right before the march, local officials and activists will pressure the Home Office to prevent the march, which was historically ignored. However, the player and the AI have the choice of following through. It is thus entirely possible to avoid the Battle of Cable Street entirely. However, if the march is allowed to continue, there are three possible outcomes.
The historical outcome has the highest chance of happening, and will always happen if historical focus mode is on. Historically, Anti-Fascist groups including Communists, Anarchists, Socialists, Jewish Groups, and Irish Dock Workers managed to establish a blockade blocking the march, which the police tried to reroute to Cable Street. They were likewise unable to go past the blockade at Cable Street, after which the march was called off. Should the police manage to clear out some of the first blockade, the Blackshirts will attempt to go through their planned route. This will trigger an all-out brawl with the anti-fascists, who outnumber the police and Blackshirts by over two to one. They will force the Fascists out by force, which is deemed a “full anti-fascist victory” (as opposed to the historical anti-fascist victory), though the BUF will use this opportunity to victimize themselves. Now, the logical third outcome would be a fascist “victory”. In this rare scenario, East End activists are unable to convince the CPGB leadership not to hold an unrelated anti-fascist event at Hyde Park at the same time in support of Spain, while they were historically able to convince the Party Leadership to divert resources into helping the East End instead. The police will try and clear out the first blockade as in the ahistorical far-left victory scenario, but the anti-fascists will no longer outnumber the fascists by a large margin, and thus will create a standoff. This will be perceived to be a failure of the CPGB (within local and leftist circles) and thus cause a rise in support for the ILP instead. Should either anti-fascist victory scenario occur, the chain will end with a retaliatory Pogrom.
The British Fascists event chain only has three events. First, the BF dissolves in late 1934. As written in the event, the BF was very much on the decline since 1926, and much of their budget was being spent on parties. It went bankrupt in 1934, and consequently dissolved. Rotha Lintorn-Orman will die the following year. However, in 1939, the Far-Right Authoritarian slot will be filled once more, this time by the British People’s Party. A splinter faction of the BUF, they are technically fascist, but they also adopted Social Credit policies.
Finally, we have the Abdication Crisis Chain. It will really start in January 1936, when King George V dies. This will, of course, put Edward VIII on the throne. Edward VIII was popular among the people for his good looks and fashion sense, but was not trusted by the political establishment to properly fill his role as King. The monarch is meant to be politically neutral; they are not meant to give opinions on policy or try and influence legislation in any way. However, some of Edward’s remarks (in public!) made the establishment very worried that he was trying to influence public opinion and thus policy. In addition, whereas the King is meant to show a more measured middle-class personality in public, Edward wasn’t very discreet about his affair with Wallis Simpson, an American who in 1936 was separating from her second husband. When Mrs. Simpson divorced her second husband in October 1936, everyone assumed that Edward was going to marry her as soon as possible. The proposed marriage was opposed on moral, religious, political, and nationalist grounds. Faced with this proposition, Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin (though it could be a Labour PM, the chain is unchanged) offered him three choices.
First, Edward could simply marry Mrs. Simpson, granting her the title of Queen Consort. Second, he could marry her Morganatically, which would deny her any titles. Thirdly, he could abdicate. The government and the Prime Ministers of the dominions were strongly against the standard Royal Marriage, stressing that option two and three are preferable. However, Edward proposed that he make a broadcast in which he would publically accept the Morganatic Marriage. Baldwin saw this as an attempt to influence public opinion, and blocked the speech. Faced with no other option, Edward chose to abdicate. His brother Albert will then take the throne as King George VI!
The chain does not end here. First, Stanley Baldwin will resign in 1937 (even if the Conservatives are not in power) for health reasons. Secondly, Edward and Wallis, now the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, will tour either Nazi Germany or, if there is no Nazi Germany, he will tour Fascist Italy. And finally, Ireland will become a de facto republic. This will be moved to the Irish focus tree, but it is here for now to provide a mechanism for Ireland to break free.
Full Tree So Far
Frequently Asked Questions:
Will it be possible to Keep Edward VIII, either through a morganatic marriage or other methods?
Not in 0.1. We will look into options in future versions, but a morganatic marriage will not be possible. Edward can only have the throne or the marriage, not both.
Will the Conservatives and Labour have unique interactions with Edward VIII, or will those events be the same?
They will be the same for the time being.
Can we CPGB/Liberal/BUF participation in government?
The CPGB and BUF had very little popular support, and it is implausible that they would get sufficient support from either the people or another party. Both Leninism/Stalinism and Fascism never really caught on in the United Kingdom.
Though the Liberals have seats unlike the other two, they a) still have insufficient support to form a government and b) disagree too much with Labour and the Conservatives to join a coalition with them.
Can the BUF’s ideology change if the international situation is different?
Not at present, though this will be looked into in the future. However, it will not allow for a BUF path unless the UK is occupied by a fascist country.
Is there a Republican path?
Republicanism is a dead movement by the 1930’s, specifically because of actions taken by the Conservatives in the two decades prior to present the Monarchy as an inter-class institution rather than a symbol of the upper class.
Will Labour be able to enter into a coalition with the ILP and/or CPGB?
Labour, the ILP, and the CPGB largely wanted nothing to do with each other, especially between Labour and the Communists.
Is the old parliament system (as shown in PR 26) gone?
Yes, the UK will now use the same system as shown in Spain and Germany.
Can Irish or Welsh Nationalist Parties gain Representation in Parliament?​
Not in this time period. The SNP first gained representation in 1970, and Plaid Cymru first gained representation in 1974.
Closing Thoughts:
We are still in need of developers, primarily coders at this point. If you have an interest in coding - regardless of nation or other aspect - please see Progress Report 8.5 or message me directly for details. If you have an interest in coding but don’t know how to code, the Hoi4 Wiki contains a great amount of information! We are not just looking for country developers, we are also looking for people to do some generic work. If you do not have much coding experience, this could work well for you!
About the Position:
As a coder you will work with our planners to create content for countries in the game. This includes, but is not limited to focus trees, decisions, events and national spirits. You will get the chance to develop programming and teamwork skills. You will also be working with artists and writers to implement our top-quality graphics and writing.
Commitment: Our system of management ideally expects that each modder make a meaningful contribution every month, with a limit of three months of inactivity. However, we understand that sometimes, life just gets in the way, so such situations will not count as inactivity, so long as the team is notified beforehand (and if you don't know what counts and what doesn't, just ask!). Positions available: Lots!
Qualifications:
About the Team:
The CBtS team (which at present includes upwards of 50 developers) is intercontinental and multicultural, and we offer a welcoming and friendly environment. We're happy to help each other with our code, learning how to make gfx, Aside from modding, we enjoy memes, video games, and learning more about history.Where do I sign up?If you're interested in joining the team, please see Progress Report 8.5 OR message me for details.
Where can I go to learn how to mod?
The Hoi4 Wiki contains extensive documentation on how game mechanics can be scripted and how to use most commands. There are also many tutorials on YouTube.
Other Credits:
Major Works Cited:
Rejected Titles:
submitted by s_team337 to CBTSmod [link] [comments]

Covid-19 update Friday 24th April

Good morning from the UK. It’s Friday 24th April. My marigold seeds have taken off and are starting to sprout secondary stage leaves (marigolds are good companion plants; they ward off various pests in a vegetable garden whilst they can also be good sacrificial plants should a slug manage to somehow breach our electric barrier). Meanwhile, the first of my wife’s radishes seeds is starting to emerge from the compost she put in a recycled milk carton tetrapak a few days ago; she’s very excited by this. Advance warning, today’s post is a bit food supply chain heavy. Happy Friday everybody.

Virus news in depth


AP Story from Tuesday 21st April: UN food agency chief: World on brink of `a hunger pandemic’ - The head of the U.N. food agency warned Tuesday that, as the world is dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, it is also “on the brink of a hunger pandemic” that could lead to “multiple famines of biblical proportions” within a few months if immediate action isn’t taken. World Food Program Executive Director David Beasley told the U.N. Security Council that even before COVID-19 became an issue, he was telling world leaders that “2020 would be facing the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II.” That’s because of wars in Syria, Yemen and elsewhere, locust swarms in Africa, frequent natural disasters and economic crises including in Lebanon, Congo, Sudan and Ethiopia, he said. Beasley said today 821 million people go to bed hungry every night all over the world, a further 135 million people are facing “crisis levels of hunger or worse,” and a new World Food Program analysis shows that as a result of COVID-19 an additional 130 million people “could be pushed to the brink of starvation by the end of 2020.” He said in the video briefing that WFP is providing food to nearly 100 million people on any given day, including “about 30 million people who literally depend on us to stay alive.”
(Cont’d) Beasley, who is recovering from COVID-19, said if those 30 million people can’t be reached, “our analysis shows that 300,000 people could starve to death every single day over a three-month period” — and that doesn’t include increased starvation due to the coronavirus. “In a worst-case scenario, we could be looking at famine in about three dozen countries, and in fact, in 10 of these countries we already have more than one million people per country who are on the verge of starvation,” he said. According to WFP, the 10 countries with the worst food crises in 2019 were Yemen, Congo, Afghanistan, Venezuela, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Syria, Sudan, Nigeria and Haiti. He pointed to a sharp drop in overseas remittances that will hurt countries such as Haiti, Nepal and Somalia; a loss of tourism revenue which, for example, will damage Ethiopia where it accounts for 47 percent of total exports; and the collapse of oil prices which will have a significant impact in lower-income countries like South Sudan where oil accounts for almost 99 percent of total exports.

The Gulf Times takes a different slant on the story: ‘Instead of coronavirus, the hunger will kill us’; COVID-19 brings fears of a global food crisis - In Kibera, the largest slum in Kenya’s capital Nairobi, people desperate to eat set off a stampede during a recent giveaway of flour and cooking oil, leaving scores injured and two people dead. The coronavirus has sometimes been called an equaliser because it has sickened both rich and poor, but when it comes to food, the commonality ends. It is poor people, including large segments of poorer nations, who are now going hungry and facing the prospect of starving. “The coronavirus has been anything but a great equaliser,” said Asha Jaffar, a volunteer who brought food to families in the Nairobi slum of Kibera after the fatal stampede. “It’s been the great revealer, pulling the curtain back on the class divide and exposing how deeply unequal this country is.” Already, 135 million people had been facing acute food shortages, but now with the pandemic, 130 million more could go hungry in 2020, said Arif Husain, chief economist at the World Food Program, a UN agency. Altogether, an estimated 265 million people could be pushed to the brink of starvation by year’s end. “We’ve never seen anything like this before,” Husain said. “It wasn’t a pretty picture to begin with, but this makes it truly unprecedented and uncharted territory.”
(Cont’d) There is no shortage of food globally, or mass starvation from the pandemic yet continues the Gulf Times article. But logistical problems in planting, harvesting and transporting food will leave poor countries exposed in the coming months, especially those reliant on imports, said Johan Swinnen, director general of the International Food Policy Research Institute in Washington. While the system of food distribution and retailing in rich nations is organised and automated, he said, systems in developing countries are “labour intensive,” making “these supply chains much more vulnerable to COVID-19 and social distancing regulations.” On a recent evening, hundreds of migrant workers, who have been stuck in New Delhi after a lockdown was imposed in March with little warning, sat under the shade of a bridge waiting for food to arrive. The Delhi government has set up soup kitchens, yet workers like Nihal Singh go hungry as the throngs at these centres have increased in recent days. “Instead of coronavirus, the hunger will kill us,” said Singh, who was hoping to eat his first meal in a day.

Coronavirus-driven CO2 shortage threatens US food, water and beer supply, officials say - The Guardian reports that there is an emerging shortage of carbon dioxide gas (CO2) according to a Washington state emergency planning document. The document, a Covid-19 situation report produced by the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC), contains a warning from the state’s office of drinking water (ODW) about difficulties in obtaining CO2, which is essential for the process of water treatment. The document says that the ODW is “still responding to [that day’s] notification of a national shortage of CO2”. It continues: “Several [water plants] had received initial notification from their vendors that their supply would be restricted to 33% of normal.” It further warns: “So far utilities have been able to make the case that they are considered essential to critical infrastructure and have been returned to full supply. However, we want to ask if CISA [the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency] can assess this through their contacts, if this is sustainable given the national shortage.”
(Cont’d) Asked to clarify the nature of this problem, ODW director Mike Means said in an email that his agency had first learned of potential problems when Seattle public utilities were “contacted by their vendor Airgas who supplied a copy of a Force Majeure notice”, warning them that their CO2 order would be reduced due to pandemic-related shortages. Force majeure is a contractual defense that allows parties to escape liability for contracts in the case of events – such as a pandemic – that could not be reasonably foreseen. In this case, Means wrote, “Airgas informed in their notice that they would only be able to do 80% of their normal service but subsequent discussions said to expect more like 33%”. At this point, he added, “we reached out to understand if this was a WA specific problem or national. We quickly understood it to be a national issue.”
(Cont’d) ODW had then contacted federal agencies such as CISA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (Fema) and industry bodies such as the Association of State Drinking Water Authorities (ASDWA). The main reason for national shortages, according to the CEO of the Compressed Gas Association (CGA), Rich Gottwald, is a ramping down of ethanol production. “Back in the summertime, the [Trump] administration exempted some gasoline manufacturers from using ethanol. Then we had Russia and Saudi Arabia flooding the market with cheap gasoline. All of that led to an oversupply of ethanol,” Gottwald said. “As ethanol manufacturers were ramping down because there wasn’t a market for their product, along comes Covid-19, which meant people weren’t driving anywhere”, he added. This led to plant closures, including among the 50 specialized plants that collect CO2 for the food and beverage market. Gottwald’s association, along with a number of associations representing food and beverage industries, which together use 77% of food-grade CO2, issued a joint warning to the federal government about the shortage. In an open letter to the vice-president, Mike Pence, the coalition warns: “Preliminary data show that production of CO2 has decreased by approximately 20%, and experts predict that CO2 production may be reduced by 50% by mid-April.” It continues: “A shortage in CO2 would impact the US availability of fresh food, preserved food and beverages, including beer production.”

The 'land army' needed to keep the UK's food supply chain going as thousands of tonnes of food risks going to waste - ITV has done a piece on the UK farming supply chain. Farmers are desperate for help. Without their usual influx of migrant workers from the EU, thousands of tonnes of food risk going to waste in fields up and down the country, just as the summer crops come into season. Every year our farming industry needs 90,000 seasonal workers. Like Robyn, many have put themselves forward - but in no way near the numbers needed. Others are finding the application process hard to navigate. Mark Thorogood, whose family have run the Essex farm for three generations, says it’s a perilous time for the food supply chain. "If we can't get the labour – it doesn’t get picked. That’s the crux of it", he said. Meanwhile, the charity The Food Foundation claims more than one and a half million Britons are going without food for at least a day because of the pandemic and three million have experienced hunger since the lockdown. On top of all that - the reality that nearly 50% of our food comes from abroad. With the numbers of ships crossing the Channel reduced and port workers hit by the virus, this is now under threat too. So could this crisis see a permanent change in how we feed our nation? The country's leading voice on food security, Professor Tim Lang gave us a grave warning: "The entire world food system is being disrupted. More disruptions are coming. Plantings not happening, food being wasted. "Britain only produces about 50% of its food - the country that can only half feed itself has got to wake up". (Personal note: this is why I’m putting effort into growing veg)

Virus news in brief


Sources: The Guardian, CNN or (to get an alternative spin) Radio New Zealand









Supply chain news in depth


Hidden threat: Japan only has a 2-week stockpile of LNG (Liquid Natural Gas) - If supplies stop, it will cause major power supply problems in the country says Nikkei’s Asian review which has an article highlighting the continuing energy supply chain vulnerability in Japan ever since the Fukushima nuclear disaster. It takes about one month to ship LNG from the Middle East to Japan explains the article but if the coronavirus outbreak prevents ships from docking in Japan it could have a big impact on the country's power supply. The physical properties of LNG mean it is poorly suited for long-term storage hence the country only holding a two-week stockpile. Despite this, the country depends on the fuel for 40% of its electric power generation needs, and all of the LNG it uses is imported from the Middle East and Southeast Asia. Tokyo Bay, which stretches across the prefectures of Chiba, Tokyo and Kanagawa, is Japan's most important LNG power generation hub. JERA operates many of the power plants there, all of which run on LNG. Accounting for about 30% of Japan's total LNG power generation, these plants produce 26 million kilowatts of electricity. If, for instance, the coronavirus was to force these plants to stop, the Greater Tokyo area would immediately lose its power supply (Personal note: that’s a population of approx 38.5m people).
(Cont’d) Today, LNG is a pillar of Japan's electricity. Before the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami in Japan, LNG made up 28% of the country's power generation. That increased to 40% in fiscal 2017 as the nation's nuclear power plants went off grid, one after the other, following the Fukushima nuclear crisis. While some of Japan's nuclear plants have come back online, based on the strictest standards in the world, only three of the 10 electric power companies have been able to do so. Moreover, the coronavirus is inching closer and closer to the nuclear plants. Recently, a contractor working at the Genkai Nuclear Power Plant in the southern prefecture of Saga tested positive for the virus and construction at the site was stopped temporarily. Japan has traditionally tried to maintain a diverse mixture of power sources -- including nuclear, LNG, fossil fuels and renewable energy -- due to its reliance on imports as an island nation. "It is highly unbalanced to depend close to half of our energy on LNG alone," an official at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry concedes. With shipments arriving constantly, a few missed shipments will not immediately signal a crisis. But an extended cutoff will spell trouble for the country.
(Cont’d) Japan was already facing a power shortage this year, "so the timing is very bad," said a power industry source. The Sendai nuclear power plant in Kagoshima Prefecture was shut down last month because it failed to meet antiterrorism standards. The No. 3 reactor at the Ikata nuclear power plant in Ehime Prefecture is offline following a court injunction. The number of nuclear reactors in operation this year is expected to temporarily fall by half from nine, so Japan cannot rely heavily on nuclear power. Japan's energy self-sufficiency stands at about 10%, well below the 40% for food. The movement to shift away from carbon has led to a backlash against domestic coal-fired power plants, so dependence on LNG could rise further. One reason that Tokyo Electric is rushing to restart its Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear plant in Niigata Prefecture is because "heavy concentration in LNG power in Tokyo Bay is a major risk to the stable supply of power," according to an official at the utility. The coronavirus pandemic is testing whether Japan's government and utilities can diversify energy sources to prepare against the risks that threaten supplies.

USA meat packing plant Covid-19 problems worse than originally thought - A rash of coronavirus outbreaks at dozens of meatpacking plants across the nation is far more extensive than previously thought, according to an exclusive review of cases by USA TODAY and the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting. More than 150 of America’s largest meat processing plants operate in counties where the rate of coronavirus infection is already among the nation’s highest, based on the media outlets’ analysis of slaughterhouse locations and county-level COVID-19 infection rates. These facilities represent more than 1 in 3 of the nation’s biggest beef, pork and poultry processing plants. Rates of infection around these plants are higher than those of 75% of other U.S. counties, the analysis found.
(Cont’d) While experts say the industry has thus far maintained sufficient production despite infections in at least 2,200 workers at 48 plants, there are fears that the number of cases could continue to rise and that meatpacking plants will become the next disaster zones. "Initially our concern was long-term care facilities," said Gary Anthone, Nebraska's chief medical officer, in a Facebook Live video Sunday. “If there's one thing that might keep me up at night, it's the meat processing plants and the manufacturing plants." Factory workers, unions, and even managers say the federal government – including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration – has done little more than issue non-enforceable guidance. On its website, for example, the CDC has released safety guidelines for critical workers and businesses, which primarily promote common-sense measures of sanitization and personal distancing. USA Today says that state health departments have also taken a backseat role in all but a few places. There’s more in the article here.

Supply chain news in brief









Good news


Meet the 12-year-old who rode 36 hours on Zwift alongside Geraint Thomas - The Tour De France winner and double Olympic gold medalist earlier this week did 3 12 hour cycling sessions to raise money for the UK’s NHS (National Health Service), eventually earning £350,000. Alongside him rode a 12 year old Mak Larkin who by the end of the 36 hours of cycling had managed to cycle 740km (460 miles). Proud mum Lynsey told Cycling Weekly: “Lockdown was really getting to Mak, being that he was so eager to race this season as it was his first year at national level road and mountain bike cross country. “He saw Geraint’s 36-hour challenge and told us he wanted to do some of it with him for something to do and to support the NHS. He then told us a few hours later that he wanted to do the full challenge and wanted to raise some money himself. At time of writing his fundraising page (also for the NHS) stands at £5,772 (approx €6,605 or $7,111 USD). Cycling weekly has more here.

A toddler has been able to hear for the first time after a groundbreaking remote switch-on of her cochlear implants - The BBC reports that audiologists in Southampton activated the devices for 18-month-old Margarida Cibrao-Roque via the internet as they are unable to see patients in person due to Covid-19 measures. Professor Helen Cullington said the procedure took "technical creativity". Margarida's father said it had "opened a big window" for his daughter. Margarida, who has been deaf since birth because she has Ushers Syndrome Type One, had received her cochlear implants in an earlier operation. Staff at the University of Southampton's Auditory Implant Service (USAIS) used specialist software and were able to monitor progress via videolink to the family's home in Camberley, Surrey. During the switch-on levels of electrical stimulation were gradually built up and Margarida's responses were constantly monitored. It is hoped her new cochlear implants will, over time, help her to hear and to communicate more easily. Margarida's mother, Joana Cibrao said the team were "just brilliant and made it happen" despite the lockdown restrictions. "The possibility of Margarida calling me mummy one day would mean the world," she said.

Donations


Several asked if they can send me $/£/€ via Patreon (in some cases because I've saved them time or money, others for no reason at all). I don't need the cash (that's lovely though) but as you may have read above, food bank charities are getting really hit hard with all this panic buying. Please consider giving whatever you'd have given me to a foodbank charity instead:
UK: https://www.trusselltrust.org/
France: https://www.banquealimentaire.org/
Germany: https://www.tafel.de/
Netherlands: https://www.voedselbankennederland.nl/steun-ons/steun-voedselbank-donatie/
Italy: https://www.bancoalimentare.it/it/node/1
Spain: https://www.fesbal.org/
Australia: https://www.foodbank.org.au/
Canada: https://www.foodbankscanada.ca/
USA: https://www.feedingamerica.org/
Thanks in advance for any donations you give. If there's foodbank charities in your country and it's not listed above, please suggest it and I will include it going forward.
submitted by Fwoggie2 to supplychain [link] [comments]

[EPILOGUE] Pax Indica

The Indian Subcontinent in 2050

A timeline of events in the Indian subcontinent between 2035 and 2050.

The Great Indian War (2033-2038)

Rise of DUSS and PRT
Beginning in 2033 and lasting until mid-2038, the Great Indian War was, without a doubt, the bloodiest continental conflict since the Second World War, resulting in the deaths of over sixty seven million people including military casualties and civilian deaths and over two trillion dollars in terms of property damage and instrumental in completely changing the face of both Indian and Asian geopolitics forever. What began as ethnic and socioeconomic strife back in the 20s would spiral into a full-fledged continental war within ten years and while most scholars and historians regard 2033, the year of the declaration of independence of the southern Dravidian states, as the start of the Great Indian War, some argue that the war had begun as early as 2027 in the manner of ethnic and religious pogroms in India, especially targeted towards southern Indians and Muslims. Reaching a wide audience and acquiring great popular support for their separation from India, both the Dravidian Union of Socialist States and the People's Republic of Telangana were successful in keeping their territories under control despite heavy assaults and slowly chipped away at more and more territory; the city of Bengaluru, the tech capital of India, would fall to the DUSS in November 2035, a massive blow to an already deprecated morale in the Indian Army. The fall of the city also led to the Congress, already having been elected by a thin margin, to be voted out and replaced by the BJP although this time under Amit Shah, the assassinated former Prime Minister Modi's personal friend and ally. The civil strife in Maharashtra finally finds a voice in the newly rejuvenated Republican Marathi Congress (formerly the Republican Party of India), championing Marathi nationalism, secularism, anti-casteism, and laissez-faire capitalism with a focus on creating a welfare state. The party does not take up arms, however, and continues with its stance of non-violent resistance. Negotiations regarding increased autonomy with Delhi fail as the Indian economy completely collapses and inflation goes sky high, further cementing the idea of secession among all active groups and in states that had previously remained pro-Delhi as the odds of a return to a 'normal India' shrink away.
Indian GDP (incl. secessionists) in 2035: $6.4 trillion
Indian GDP (incl. secessionists) in 2036: $4.9 trillion
Indian GDP (incl. secessionists) in 2037: $3.7 trillion
The Gandharan Spring
Elsewhere, however, the archrival looks on while lapping up new and old investments and local growth as foreign investment meant for India is siphoned away to Pakistan, Southeast Asia, and even Central America. While civil strife continues in India, an entirely different movement strikes Pakistan - one demanding change, equality, and justice for all. While the Islamic Republic had slowly shied away from its Islamic morals and assumed a more pragmatic approach to world affairs and had significantly benefited from this new policy, it hadn't anticipated a social revolution to begin within its own borders. The thousands of coffee cafes established in its major (and liberal) cities became a breeding ground for new thought while the newfound prosperity through rapid economic development and industrialization led to a mass wave of 'wokeness' among the population. The annual women's march, coffee shop discussions, the emergence of Latin Urdu, and a new wave of Urdu poetry in the newly standardized Latin script became a part of a newly emerging unitary culture that transcended the bounds of ethnic nationalism and culminated into a cultural renaissance as people found new ways to express themselves, their words, and their art. Marches and protests to reduce military spending and the establishment of proper universal healthcare and social security became a norm as the country dived deep into what came to be known as the Gandharan Spring - named so after the ancient scholarly state of Gandhara. Economically, the Pakistani GDP exceeds $1.5 trillion in 2037 as new investments pour in and local industry, both large and small, prosper and the newly built planned city of Şahinpur becomes a major hub of technological innovation in Asia.
Total Collapse
But back in India, war was the only thing on the minds of the common people. Mass migrations across state and international lines further impacted local economies and the Dravidian cause became further ignited with the BJP's return to power, once again sparking ethnic conflict between the citizenry. Pogroms and killings continue as almost every state is plunged into anarchy over hyperinflation, ethnic and religious tensions, and the collapse of the Indian federation. Courts and the judiciary became irrelevant as the Constitution devolved into nothing more than a piece of paper and civil rights eroded away in the name of security and 'national integrity'. The Indian military, by now the only functional organ of the Delhi-based Indian government, becomes plagued with deserters and a collapsed morale among all ranks with nearly all but the staunchest of (Hindu) nationalists unwilling to fight to 'preserve the union'. Popular support for the Indian government is limited only to the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar at this point with almost all other states in active revolt or too preoccupied with anarchy and ethnic, religious, or political unrest. Both the DUSS and PRT have gained strategically important and economically vital territory with the former gaining control of Madurai, Coimabatore, and Kochi port as well as large swathes of countryside in its claimed territory while the latter gained control over Hyderabad, the economic and political capital of Telangana.
But all was not rosy for the secessionists in the south either. With supplies running low and exhaustion high among its ranks, both the DUSS and PRT wanted, nay, needed, a quick end to this war. And that would come albeit not in a way they would've anticipated. In early July, Kashmir rose in uproar. While pro-Pakistani/independence militias had been active in the region since the departure of the British, this new uprising was far more organized and effective and an entire new front was opened up for the Indian government to worry about. This was also the first time the term 'Great Indian War' would be used to describe the civil strife going on in India. In response, the Indian military cracked down hard on the secessionists and news of continued war crimes in Kashmir would not be well-received by the neighbor to the west.
Here's Johnny!
True to its newfound commitment to 'neutrality', the Islamic Republic of Pakistan had remained neutral since the declaration of independence of the two southern secessionist groups. > On the eve of July 21, 2037 one of the few remaining squadrons of the Indian Navy intercepted an arms shipment from Djibouti en route to the southern port city of Kochi which had fallen into the hands of the DUSS and while it had been widely accepted that that country had been involved in this war in some capacity, the capture of the shipment finally sealed the deal for the hot-headed government of PM Amit Shah and the BJP. Although the shipment had decidedly come from Pakistan, the government in Islamabad wholly denied any involvement in the affair and called for 'peaceful dialog' between Delhi and the secessionists. Over the last two decades, the Islamic Republic had begun to care a lot about its international image, reflected in the permanent invitation it received from the United States to the G20, but the BJP, already seething with hatred for the country and holding it responsible for Narendra Modi's assassination all those years ago (that would ultimately snowball into the Great Indian War), would have none of it.
The very next day, the Indian military conducted a strategic surgical strike against a Pakistani military base in Gilgit-Baltistan which it defined as a 'warning shot' for its western neighbor to not interfere in its internal issues. All it did was ignite a national fervor that couldn't be extinguished even with the coldness of the deepest abyss. The three Pakistani soldiers killed in the strike were awarded the Nişan-i-Haider, the highest military award in the country, and Pakistan entered the Great Indian War with a declaration of war against the Republic of India on July 22, 2037.
The End
The initial Indian strike against Pakistan killed three Pakistani soldiers. The counterstrike conduced by the Pakistan Army as its first response killed forty seven Indian soldiers and disabled two Rafale fighter aircraft. But that was only the start.
During the kerfuffle between the two archrivals, major new developments would spring up across the rest of the subcontinent especially in the DUSS and Maharashtra. The Marathi Congress, beefed up with major donations (later revealed to be major Maharasthra-based businessmen such as Ambani and Tata as well as from anonymous accounts owned by REDACTED), took control of key buildings and locations in the state, including the very import Port of Mumbai, and declared independence from India as the Maratha Republic. In the south, ideological drift between the DUSS and PRT led to an end to an otherwise quite beneficial partnership between the two. The same ideological drift would begin to take hold within DUSS as well. Kerala, notable for its high standards of living and prosperity compared to other parts of India, began to wonder if it may be better off on its own just as Telangana had split to form a smaller but ultimately more manageable sovereign state. But the war had now escalated to a degree not initially imagined as the two competing megapowers of the region, India and Pakistan, finally came to a head.
While Pakistan had built up to a parity with its larger and traditionally stronger rival, it was the exhaustion of Indian forces that would give the smaller state the primary advantage early in the war as the fresh and qualitatively superior Pakistan Army blitzkrieged into Kashmir with its tank fleets of high-end Haider main battle tanks and state-of-the-art Griffin III IFVs, capturing Srinagar, Jammu, and the Siachen Glacier within twenty four hours of the declaration of war. Already exhausted in fighting the upstart rebels in the region, the Indian Army personnel stationed in Kashmir quickly resorted to defensive tactics as the invasive force rapidly captured town after town, putting sixty thousand of the ninety thousand strong Indian force under siege within just the first three days of conflict.
To the south, the Pakistan Navy destroyed the Indian naval bases in the state of Gujarat (the last pro-Delhi state on the western seaboard) and deploy a major submarine squadron in the region to deter any harassment from the massively depleted Indian Navy as it made its way south, breaking the blockade deployed against DUSS thus allowing relief aid (and weapons) to once again reach the rebels. But the actual intent of their move south would be revealed with the rapid landings of troops on the many tiny islands that made up the Lakshadweep union territory and the occupation of all government buildings and posts in the archipelago. By the end of the month, the Indian territories of Kashmir and the Lakshadweep islands had both been occupied by the invading Pakistani forces and a shockwave rocked the entire subcontinent to its core. The All India Trinamool Congress declared the independence of 'Kalinga Ganga' - a federation of the Indian states of West Bengal, Orissa, Jharkhand, and Chhattisgarh to 'oppose the fascist tendencies of the Delhi-based Hindi' with their capital in Kolkata. The Sikhs of Punjab declared the independence of the 'Khalsa' - the Sikh brotherhood worldwide - and called on all Sikhs to return home. In Delhi, Prime Minister Amit Shah handed power over to the military who declared martial law across the country, dissolved the Parliament, and declared the Constitution void. The Maratha Republic took this time to announce Pune, not Mumbai, as the capital of their nascent state.
At this time, cracks within the DUSS also began to show as the state of Kerala announced its separation from the socialist federation, declaring the People's Republic of Keralam, a social democratic state based on the principles established by the Self-Respect Movement and the original Dravidar Kazhagam rather than the European-derived ideology of the DUSS. Elsewhere, the Pakistan Navy crossed by Sri Lanka - where it refueled and restocked - and entered the Bay of Bengal to open up a brand new front in this massive continental war.
The Indian Army attempted five times to break the 'iron wall' - the Pakistan Army's three-thousand strong fleet of M1PK Matin tanks - but failed to make a dent, losing whatever was left of their morale and drive with every failed attempt. Indian formations were ripe targets for the Pakistan Air Force which maintained total air superiority in the war with its advanced aerial fleet of F-35s and AF-1 fifth generation plus fighter aircraft and this support allowed the Pakistanis to break into India proper on January 26, 2038 as they crossed the Punjab and seized control of the state for the newly declared Khalsa while the southern command crossed the Rann and captured all of the Kutch beyond the disputed border at Sir Creek. Already halved by personnel deserting and refusing to follow orders and to defections to the declared secessionist states, the defeated Indian Army was the first to capitulated following Pakistani landings on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and the capture of Port Blair, Mayabunder, and Car Nicobar by Pakistani Marines.
The Indian Air Force was the next to follow. Having been defeated in the air, the IAF wouldn't find peace on the ground either as the enemy flew sortie after sortie, wrecking almost every airbase with its advanced platforms such as the F-35 and the AF-1. The defections to DUSS, PRT, Kerala, Maratha Republic, and Kalinga didn't help either and whatever was left of the Indian air fleets was lost in a final sortie over the city of Chandigarh as Pakistani troops crossed into the state of Haryana and came within two hundred kilometres of Delhi.
The last two states to secede from the Union were Goa and Garhwal, the latter of which claimed the northern Himalayan states of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand as their rightful territory while the former declared the small coastal state of Goa as its rightful sovereign territory. With two hundred thousand personnel in Kashmir, one hundred thousand in Gujarat, and about five thousand split between Lakshadeep and Andaman & Nicobar, the Pakistan Army entered Delhi on July 2, 2038 and forced the surrender of the final vestiges of the Indian military high command (and government) thus bringing the Great Indian War to a conclusion.
Treaty of Dharamsala
On August 14, 2038, exactly ninety one years after the independence of the subcontinent from British colonial rule, representatives from all belligerents of the Great Indian War met at the Himalayan capital of the newly-declared sovereign state of Garhwal to sign a treaty to decide the future of the Indian subcontinent and to ensure that this war would be the last of its kind, at least in the Indian subcontinent. The following are the salient features of the Treaty of Dharamsala.
  • The Republic of India will be dissolved and its membership in all international organizations voided.
  • All nuclear weapons and facilities to manufacture more nuclear weapons will be dismantled.
  • No new sovereign state in the subcontinent will be regarded as the lawful successor state to the Republic of India and will seek memberships on their own merit.
  • All new sovereign states will commit to the ideals of democracy, justice, and freedom.
Besides these salient points, all representatives set out to solve any territorial disputes that might cause tensions in the future. Pakistan claimed full sovereignty over the union territories of Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, Lakshadweep, and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands as well as the Kutch region of the state of Gujarat. Garhwal claimed full sovereignty over the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand. Khalsa (Republic) claimed full sovereignty over the Indian state of Punjab and the union territory of Chandigarh. Kalinga Ganga claimed full sovereignty over the states of West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, and Jharkhand. Kamarupa claimed full sovereignty over the Seven Sister States. The Maratha Republic claimed full sovereignty over the state of Maharashtra. The DUSS claimed full sovereignty over the states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka as well as Puducherry, Karaikal, and Yanam districts of the union territory of Puducherry. Keralam claimed full sovereignty over the state of Kerala as well as the district of Mahe. PRT claimed full sovereignty over the state of Telangana. Nepal claimed sovereignty over the state of Sikkim. And finally, Gangarashtra claimed full sovereignty over the states of Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Bihar as well as the union territories of Delhi, Daman and Diu, and Dadra and Nagarhaveli.
Helpful map of the Treaty of Dharamsala

Rebuilding and the Mandala (2039-2044)

The conclusion of the Great Indian War completely changed the face of the subcontinent and left a permanent mark on world history. The dissolution of India left its archrival Pakistan as the new regional power in South Asia, further contributing to its rise as a major power. Outmatching any of the successor states of its once powerful rival in all relevant terms, the leadership in Islamabad instead adopted a different approach towards cementing its role as the leader of a new subcontinent. Instead of going the route of Russia and forcing its less powerful partners into being subservient subjects as seen in the USSR, the leadership instead looked towards Germany's role in the European Union not just as a leadership role but as a bonafide future for the Indian subcontinent. But first, it had to solve the rapidly rising issue back home.
In 2039, the Pakistani economy crossed the $2 trillion mark, solidifying its position as the largest economy in South Asia and among the largest in all of Asia as it overtook the severely damaged economy of South Korea following the end of the Second Korean War. Already being a 'permanent invitee' to the G20, it was also awarded India's now-vacant seat in the forum. But the renaissance that had sprung up during the Great Indian War had now become more than a social idea to be amused by. This Gandharan Spring had become the most important issue at home, inviting comparisons to the civil rights and counter-culture movements of the United States in the twentieth century. Pakistani cinema and television turned away from romantic dramas and towards something of more substance, tackling complex issues in a conservative, Islamic society such as drug use and pre-martial sex, women's empowerment and feminism, anti-state and anti-government feature films, and even films and dramas openly based on the Hindu heritage of the nation. Urdu literature, this time in the Latin script, saw a renaissance of its own and several instances of prose and poetry saw global success, works based on heritage and social issues rather than Islamic glory and prestige. Madrasahs became empty as parents chose functional skill over Islamic jurisprudence, attracting the ire of the mullahs who denounced the 'ever increasing degeneration' of the nation. But this was much bigger than them. The newly annexed territories of Jammu and Kashmir and the Andamans had brought in a, albeit small, but influential population of Hindus into the fold and they assimilated into this new Gandharan culture with ease.
Elsewhere, the Great War had left the rest of the subcontinent in a sorry state. Mass immigration and uncontrolled inflation had broken local economies while warfare had taken a severe toll on infrastructure. As relief, Islamabad organized the Hindustan Fund - a locally raised sum to help the broken economies of post-war India to once again find their footing and become functional sovereign states instead of going the route of Afghanistan and becoming burdens. Of course, such a task could never be accomplished by Pakistan alone and while the state did deliver about $88 billion in aid to the post-war states of the subcontinent over five years, substantial aid from the European Union, the United States, and China was significant in rebuilding these broken states. It is estimated that the total aid offered to these economies was in excess of $500 billion, enough to lay a groundwork on which to build new foundations for new states.
In 2043, the Pakistani economy crossed $3 trillion and accounted for almost half of the entire economy of the Indian subcontinent. But the Gandharan Spring had reached it breakout point and soon enough, the state would need to make some very crucial decisions.
On January 1, 2044 about forty million people across the country conducted what would come to be known as the Great Gandhara March, this time demanding significant decreases in military spending, a strong and robust healthcare and social security system, equality and liberty regardless of race and religion or any other personal metric, and a full transparent democratic system, calls that were then addressed personally by the state leadership and would be answered in the following two months.
On March 21, 2044 the state conducted a mass referendum to answer a singular question, threatened by a mass exodus of the younger, more progressive caucus of the People's Party if the demands were not addressed.
"Should Pakistan retain Islam as its official religion?
The answer was a resounding seventy eight percent no with an almost eighty five percent turnout. But this would only open the floodgates to a complete and total overhaul of the country. A second referendum would be held the next month asking the question,
"What should Pakistan's official name be?"
[ ] Islamic Republic of Pakistan
[ ] People's Islamic Republic of Pakistan
[ ] Republic of Pakistan
With eighty four percent of all votes choosing the final option, the official name of the country was changed once again to the name it had been awarded with the Constitution of 1962: the Republic of Pakistan. More questions were asked in five more referendums as Sharia-inspired laws were removed the penal code including the hotly-contested and controversial blasphemy law (which was amended to include all religion with a dramatically lighter punishment rather than being completely removed). Laws made through the controversial Hudood Ordinance of former military dictator Zia ul-Haq were completely scrubbed and the death penalty finally abolished as the country came more and more into its form as a modern nation-state.
In the Indian subcontinent, the gracious foreign aid brought the broken economies of the new states back to life as life began to settle into a normal routine once again but everyone knew that things would never, ever be the same as they once were. Several monuments were erected to honor the sixty seven million killed in senseless warring and brutality and all Indian leaders vowed to never allow a repeat of what had occurred again. The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) was redefined and rebuilt from the ground up to allow a better and more productive platform to settle disputes and to deter any future wars between new or old Indian states. A new age of cooperation would take over the subcontinent as nearly all states, regardless of ideology, became willing allies or at least established warm and cordial relations with one another, especially Pakistan and Gangarashtra. With the latter still being seen by some as the natural (if not recognized) successor state of the Republic of India as well as the strongest among all new country in the subcontinent, it was natural for the two to work towards establishing a regional environment conductive towards peace and dialogue and lead by example. With Gangarashtra toeing the line, it became quite easy for the modern Pakistani state to ensure the loyalties of other new states both to itself and to one another as it formulated a new plan to formalize the future of the region and to guide it towards a vision of peaceful cooperation, development, and shared dignity.

Indian Union (2045-2050)

Treaty of Panjim (2041)
Post-war India was not that different from post-war Europe. Both destroyed by a dangerous ideology, it was necessary for all peoples to work together to ensure that such an event could never take place again. To accomplish this, the Europeans established several commissions and organizations to negate the extreme nationalism that had ravaged Europe. European integration was seen as the antidote to such an event occurring again and the same was done with post-war India. It was easy to point out the Hindu nationalist ideology as the force that tore the subcontinent to shreds and caused the deaths of almost seventy million people. To counter the ideology and to further promote, representatives from all successor states met at the Goan capital of Panjim in 2041 to discuss the future of the Indian subcontinent. It was identified that while being proud of your nation and heritage is no crime, its devolution into hatred for other peoples is an ideology that must be combated at all cost. As part of this treaty, all Indian states agreed to curb all extreme nationalist parties and groups and denounce unwarranted religious and ethnic aggression both publicly and in their actions, leading to major purges across the region but especially in Pakistan (which continued to weaken the military-mullah consortium), the DUSS, Gangarashtra, and the Maratha Republic.
Treaty of Kandy (2042)
An year after the conference at Panjim, the Indian leaders met once again to do something of more substance and significance, this time in the Sri Lankan city of Kandy. Discussing further integration in the Indian subcontinent, several proposals were put forward including a bid to host a major sports tournament together (recommended by Maharashtra), to invite all leaders of the G-20 to visit the Indian states (recommended by Kalinga Ganga), to create a legislative assembly - an Indian parliament, per se - to sign off on any new laws established by any Indian state (recommended by Pakistan) but finally it was a suggestion from the representatives of Keralam that all other attendees agreed upon. A university to be established anywhere in the subcontinent, ultimately agreed upon to be in the city of Alappuzha in Keralam, to focus entirely on Indian studies including history, geopolitics, economics, and to provide training to students who will embody the values of unity and peace among all Indian peoples. Funded by all Indian states (except for Garhwal and Kamarupa which cited financial issues), the university would be established later than year with construction on the urban campus completing in early 2044. The institute would train future leaders, diplomats, and bureaucrats from all corners of the Indian subcontinent.
Treaty of Lahore (2044)
With the College of Indian Studies in full swing and the economies of all Indian states now rebounding from the damage suffered during the Great Indian War, leaders from the Indian states met once again to discuss further integration, this time in the second largest city of Pakistan - Lahore. A historical capital of several empire that once spanned the entirety of the subcontinent, the millennia old history of the city offered a great insight into the long and varied history of the Indian peoples. This was also where the idea for an Indian Council, created to uphold human rights, democracy and the rule of law in the Indian subcontinent, would be conceived and later brought to fruition which would establish the foundations upon which the future Indian Union would be built.
The Indian Council would become an official United Nations Observer party in 2047, an year after its establishment with the following members.
Country Capital
Pakistan Islamabad
Gangarashtra New Delhi
Khalsa Chandigarh
Garhwal Dharamsala
Kalinga Ganga Kolkata
Nepal Kathmandu
Bhutan Thimphu
Bangladesh Dhaka
Kamarupa Guwahati
Maratha Pune
Telangana Hyderabad
Goa Panjim
DUSS Bengaluru
Keralam Thiruvananthapuram
Sri Lanka Colombo
Maldives Male
Treaty of Karachi (2046)
Meeting in the largest and wealthiest city in the Indian subcontinent, the conference at Karachi would establish what would become the Indian Union in 2049. At the conference, especially called by the leaders of Pakistan, Gangarashtra, and the Maratha Republic, all members of the Indian Council would decide to establish the Indian Cooperative Council (ICC) - a customs union between all members of the Indian Council to promote further economic cooperation between all Indian states. All major languages of the Indian subcontinent such as Hindustani, Bengali, Marathi, Gujarati, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, Punjabi, and Sindhi were recognized as official languages while English was declared the working language for all official business within the ICC. Two major organs of the council were established - the Indian Commission and the Indian Parliament. A third organ was created with the annexation of the Indian Council into the ICC with the first major amendment to the ICC charter through the Treaty of Delhi (2047).
Treaty of Kolkata (2049)
The second amendment to the ICC created (or brought back) the Indian Rupee, originally pegged to the Pakistani Rupee due it being the strongest currency among the sixteen member states of the ICC. The currency was adopted in Pakistan, Khalsa (Republic), Garhwal, Gangarashtra, Kalinga Ganga, Kamarupa, and the Maratha Republic the year it was introduced and by the Maldives and Telangana in 2050. Increased trade made possible through the single currency and the liberalization of trade between the Indian states led to rapid economic growth among all member states and further improvements in terms of HDI and per capita income.
Treaty of Visakhapatnam (2050)
The name of the Indian Cooperative Council was changed to the Indian Union (IU) and the three organs were located permanently instead of revolving annually. The Indian Council was relocated to the city of Dharamsala, the Indian Commission was relocated to the city of Panjim, while the Indian Parliament was relocated to the city of Alappuzha in Garhwal, Goa, and Keralam respectively. Encompassing agreements such as single market, common currency, customs union, free trade and movement, and a mutual defense treaty, the Indian Union has the potential to become one of the key players in global geopolitics and affairs if it manages to remain stable for at least the next ten years.

Peace in India (2050-?)

While it may seem like a little early to make such statements, the successful integration of post-war Indian subcontinent into a function Indian Union has led many to claim that we may finally have established peace in the most populous region in the world. But the sky's only the limit and there's quite a lot that is still to be done.
Future Milestones
To remain functional and retain its relevance, any organization must continue to evolve with time and conquer new frontiers for the prosperity of its stakeholders. While the Indian Union is a promising step towards a peace Indian subcontinent, many have already identified key milestones the union must tackle together including a unified space research organization that will be discussed at the special conference at Allapuzha in 2051, the expansion of the unified currency to all members of the Indian Union, and the possible expansion of the IU to include new members such as Myanmar and Afghanistan, both of whom have expressed strong interest in joining the union. But for now, Pax Indica has set in and how long that may last is anyone's guess.
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[Diplomacy] India in Africa Pt. II

Expanding Trade with Africa

Historically, China has been one of the largest trading partners for the countries of eastern and southern Africa. These countries would ship raw materials and agricultural products to China, where they were processed into finished goods. These finished goods--usually machinery, vehicles, chemicals, textiles, and metal products--were then shipped back to Africa.
The emergence of India as one of the world’s leading manufacturers has shifted this calculus. Indian manufacturing enjoys several advantages over China when it comes to competing in African markets. First, India’s major industrial hubs are significantly closer to Africa than are China’s. At ten knots, the 7000 nautical mile journey from Shanghai to Dar es Salaam takes just over 29 days. In comparison, the 3000 nautical mile trip from Mumbai to Dar es Salaam takes just under thirteen days--less than half the time. While China was previously able to offset this disadvantage by shipping goods overland to Gwadar, the destruction of the Karakoram Highway has made this impossible. As a result, India is able to ship goods to Africa much quicker and at a far lower price than China is, allowing Indian goods to price out their Chinese competitors.
As if this wasn’t bad enough, this issue hits twice. Not only are Chinese exports to Africa more expensive--Chinese imports from Africa are more expensive. It is more expensive for China to buy raw materials from Africa than it is for India. These higher input prices translate into higher prices for the finished product, again making it harder for Chinese firms to compete in African markets.
This issue of price is exacerbated by the higher cost of labor in China. In 2017, the average hourly wage of a factory worker in China was $3.60, more than five times that of India. The country’s aging population, larger economy, and higher cost of living have exacerbated these issues, accelerating the relocation of foreign supply chains out of the country, and making it more difficult for Chinese manufacturers to compete with India.
Of course, these higher prices wouldn’t mean much if India didn’t have the manufacturing capacity to take advantage of the weakness. All of these factors were just as true in 2020 as they are today. So what’s changed?
Simply put, India’s manufacturing capacity has skyrocketed over the previous decade. The removal of barriers to foreign investment, a general trend of manufacturing relocating out of China, investment into local infrastructure (including, critically, the expansion of Indian container ports), and a slew of free trade agreements have transformed the Indian economy into a manufacturing powerhouse, fully ready to take advantage of its competitive advantages over China.
Over the past decade, Indian trade with eastern and southern Africa has increased significantly, with India growing into one of the largest trading partners--if not the largest trading partner--for most of the countries on the continent’s eastern seaboard. This process has been helped along in part by the fact that much of the region speaks English, allowing India and Indian firms to better interface with local markets. The Indian government hopes to leverage this growing trade relationship to deepen political and economic ties with the countries of the region.

Free Trade is Good Trade

East African Community
The East African Community, consisting of Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, and Uganda, is one of the fastest growing sectors of Africa (arguably behind only ECOWAS on the western side of the continent). With SACM’s economy growing at a breakneck pace, and with the Alameen Caliphate falling into instability, the relationship between the EAC and SACM has become more important than ever. Natural gas fields in Tanzania and oil fields in Rwanda, Uganda, and Burundi provide an attractive market (isolated from the political instability of the Middle East, critically) for India to buy hydrocarbons from. Likewise, India (and SACM at large) offers a cheaper alternative for consumer and capital goods, and a burgeoning market for the EAC’s agricultural products (which make up most of the EAC’s economy).
India has reached out to the East African Community to negotiate a free trade agreement between the EAC and SACM. This FTA would eliminate investment barriers in both countries, allowing Indian firms to funnel investment money into key economic sectors in the EAC, including mining and hydrocarbon extraction. Moreover, the FTA would allow the EAC’s raw material exports (especially their oil and gas exports) access to one of the fastest growing economic blocs in the world. The Indian energy giant Oil and Natual Gas Corporation Ltd (ONGC Ltd) and the investment conglomerate Essar are also interested in purchasing exploration and extraction rights for several unexplored concessions in both Tanzania and the Great Lakes states.
Recognizing the importance of the agricultural sector to the EAC’s economic security, the proposed FTA allows the EAC to maintain protectionary tariffs on staple crops like cereal grains and rice, but eliminates tariffs on luxury goods like coffee, tea, and tobacco (with the protections similarly removed on the Indian side).
This FTA is expected to be only part of increasing cooperation between the two blocs. India also intends to target roughly 5b USD in grants into the EAC every year, focusing on improving clean water supply, healthcare, and disaster management within the bloc. As grants, these will not need to be repaid (unlike loans from the AADB). India also hopes to create links between universities in India and Kenya, including research ties (particularly into agricultural resiliency, sustainability, and anti-corruption research) and scholarships (including fully-funded scholarships to Indian universities for up to 1000 qualified EAC students per year).
Southern African Customs Union
The Southern African Customs Union, consisting of South Africa, eSwatini, Lesotho, Namibia, and Botswana, is the oldest customs union in the world, existing in some capacity since 2010. SACU, owing to South Africa’s dominant position within the union, has managed to avoid the Chinese subservience that plagues much of the rest of the continent. India was already one of the largest trading partners of several of the countries in the union: in 2018, India was the second largest export partner of Botswana (behind Belgium) and the fifth largest export and fourth largest import partner for South Africa. The fall of Chinese manufacturing and the rise of India has only seen these ties grow.
India has reached out to SACU to attempt to negotiate a free trade agreement between SACU and SACM. This agreement would open up the countries of SACU to Indian investment (as well as opening India to SACU, primarily South African, investment). Indian firms are already chomping at the bit to invest in several sectors of the Southern African economy, including precious metal extraction in South Africa, Botswana, and Namibia (India is the largest jewelry exporter in the world), nuclear material extraction in Namibia (India has been expanding its civilian nuclear arsenal--a process which has been inhibited by China’s refusal to allow it to enter the Nuclear Suppliers Group and the lack of domestic fissile material), and mineral extraction throughout the region (factories always need raw materials, after all).
This FTA would eliminate existing tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade between the two countries, including protectionary measures on agricultural products and other foodstuffs. This should reduce the cost of importing capital and consumer goods into SACU and increase the profit margins earned by SACU-based firms exporting raw materials, foodstuffs (particularly fish and wine), and precious metals.
As part of a larger cooperative partnership, India would like to set up university exchanges between South African and Indian universities, including scholarships for up to 1000 qualified Southern African students per year.
Mozambique and Me
Mozambique has long been one of India’s closest partners in Africa. India enjoys berthing rights in Mozambique, and has run anti-piracy operations in the region since 2012. India was also the country’s second largest import partner in 2018, with exports from Mozambique to India increasing rapidly over the same period. India hopes to take the next steps to secure this relationship.
Though Mozambique is one of the poorest countries in the world (with a GDP per capita in 2018 of 475 USD), is it blessed with massive material wealth. With rapid economic development in South Asia and East Africa, Mozambique has emerged as one of the world’s largest exporters of coal. The country also has significant potential as an exporter of titanium, aluminum, gemstones, and other raw materials. However, economic mismanagement and lack of foreign investment has stymied the growth of these industries, leaving the country mired in poverty.
India hopes to help correct this with a concentrated influx of financial assistance and private investment. First, India has reached out to negotiate a free trade agreement with Mozambique. This agreement would reduce the barriers to investment by Indian firms, while allowing Mozambique’s agricultural and raw materials exports tariff-free access to Indian markets (the FTA would also allow some protections to keep Mozambique’s agricultural sector from being crushed by India’s). Indian firms are excited to invest in fields like bauxite extraction, coal mining, titanium extraction and smelting, gemstone mining, and agricultural production, particularly of cashews and cotton.
Another key issue on India’s agenda is Mozambique’s natural gas reserves. Mozambique owns the southern half of the natural gas field shared with Tanzania--a massive gas field that, if projections hold, will make Mozambique the holder of the world’s fourth largest natural gas reserves. This field is still relatively unexplored and unexploited, save some Russian and South African investment in the field in 2020. India hopes that, as part of this agreement, Indian firms like ONGC Ltd and the Essar Group will be granted exploration and extraction rights for portions of the gas field, with the goal of producing natural gas to be exported back to growing markets in Southern Africa and South Asia.
This agreement is not meant to cover just economics. If Mozambique signs the deal, India is ready to pour some 8b USD in grants into the country over the next five years (in addition to any loans Mozambique takes from the Asia Africa Development Bank). These grants will be focused on improving the quality and provision of education within Mozambique, on improving healthcare in the country (with a particular focus on combating HIV/AIDS), and on building infrastructural capacity in the country (focusing on improving roads, rails, and ports that enable the import and export of goods from the country).
submitted by TheManIsNonStop to Geosim [link] [comments]

My view of the war so far and my guesses as to what happens next.

Before I begin, please don’t spoil anything past the events of light novel volume 6.
1.) I’ve watched the anime and read the officially translated Light Novels (i.e. until volume 6). I haven’t read the manga. The available maps are not very good so I’m using my best guesses at times.
2.) This started out as my wanting to write a short summary and set of guesses as to what was going on but just kept growing.
3.) I will be using real world names for geographical entities/locations and in-universe names for political entities.
The Empire:
- Core territories:
- Held territories listed as “hot spots”:
o Imperial Ostland
o Imperial Dacia:
o Unredeemed Ildoa:
- List of colonies unknown
- Strategic situation at start of war (i.e. June-1923):
- Strategic situation at the end of volume 6 (i.e. April-1927):
The Republic:
- Core territories:
- Known colonies:
- Strategic situation at start of war:
- Strategic situation at the end of volume 6:
The Commonwealth:
- Core territories:
- List of colonies unknown but likely has large colonial possessions
- Strategic situation at start of war:
- Strategic situation at the end of volume 6:
The Entente Alliance:
- Core territories:
- List of colonies unknown, possibly none
- Strategic situation at start of war:
- Strategic situation at the end of volume 6:
The Grand Duchy/Principality of Dacia (main map says Grand Duchy, text says Principality):
- Core territories:
- List of colonies unknown, possibly none
- Strategic situation at the start of war:
- Strategic situation at the end of volume 6:
The Federation:
- Known territories:
- Unknown if it controls the rest of the USSR but presumably yes.
- Unknown if there are overseas colonies but presumably not.
- Strategic situation at start of war:
- Strategic situation at the end of volume 6:
The Unified States:
- Presumably the USA but no map available
- Strategic situation at start of war:
- Strategic situation at the end of volume 6:
The Kingdom of Ildoa:
- Core territories:
- Known colonies:
- Strategic situation at the start of war:
- Strategic situation at the end of volume 6:
The Waldstätte Confederation:
- I.E. Switzerland
- Strategic situation presumably identical to Switzerland, i.e. armed neutrality
The Ispagna Collective:
- Only labelled map seen in anime
- Appears to be the entire Iberian Peninsula
- Strategic situation:
The Turkman Principalities:
- Possibly the Ottoman Empire but no map available.
- Ildoa is trying to push colonies into some of their territories.
- No further information available
My analysis:
- Of the Empire:
- Of the Entente portion of the war:
- Of the Rhine Front:
- Of the Dacian portion of the war:
- Of the “Southern continent”:
- Of the war with the Federation:
- Of Ildoa:
- Of the war with the Commonwealth:
- Of the Unified States:
- Of Kampfgruppe Salamander:
- Of Tanya:
Guesses on the near future:
- On the Eastern Front:
- On the Federation:
- On Ildoa:
- On the “Southern Continent”:
- On the Commonwealth:
- On the Unified States:
- On Kampfgruppe Salamander:
- On the insurgency in the Entente:
Guesses on the long-term:
- It is known that the Empire would lose the war but it is not yet stated how and it is unclear what the Empire will look like post-war.
- It is my hope that Carlo Zen does not go down the route of the Empire making one last all-out offensive push to convince its enemies that defeating the Empire outright would be too costly and then sue for peace. These are the reasons:
- My guess as to what happens towards the end the war:
- My guess as to what triggers serious peace talks:
- The Empire will agree to a conditional surrender:
- All details regarding Tanya, the 203rd and Being X are heavily classified by all sides:
- As regards to Tanya:
If anyone actually read this, thanks for reading. Of course, I expect most to all of my predictions to be wrong but I had fun writing this.
submitted by slightlylooney to YoujoSenki [link] [comments]

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