In Brief – N.33 – April 10, 2016

In 2015, France lost its status as the world’s top wine producer to Italy, a sign of changing habits and increasing global competition. Also, France has lost out to both Italy and Spain in exports for the last eight years.

Microsoft executives allegedly met with private equity firms as they consider a takeover of the struggling internet giant Yahoo! According to the report, Microsoft is willing to lend big bucks to get a sale going and establish strong ties with the buyers.

On the sidelines of the 5th edition of the DIMDEX, Qatar signed a MoU with France for the purchase of 24 Dassault Aviation-built Rafale jet fighters, a contract worth €6.7 billion.

Brazil’s largest party (PMDB) has left President Dilma Rousseff’s governing coalition and pulled its members from her government, a departure that stroke a serious blow to her chances of surviving in office.

Russia ignores the norms of international conduct and breaks the rules of the international system. That represents a challenge and a threat to all of us,” said British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond while on a visit to Tbilisi.

Parallel to ongoing peace talks with Colombia’s largest rebel group FARC, ELN rebels also agreed to formalize peace talks, the government and rebels announced.

French prosecutors have opened a formal investigation into alleged insider trading by Olivier Fric, the husband of Areva’s former boss, Anne Lauvergeon, as part of a probe into the ill-fated acquisition of Canada’s Uramin.

A new type of malware has emerged, one that takes crypto-extortion to a new level. Petya targets the victim’s entire startup drive and for now the only way to recover from Petya is to pay up a ransom.

The proliferation and the risk of use of nuclear material by terrorist groups should top the agenda on the occasion of the 4th Nuclear Security Summit in Washington DC.

IMF internal meeting predicted Greekdisaster”, threatened to leave Troika, according to Wikileaks. Though it gave further indication about the IMF stance, this has not surprised anyone given that there have been high tensions between the IMF, Greece and creditors since the beginning of the bailout.

A new impeachment motion against South African President Jacob Zuma has been discussed in parliament, following accusations against Zuma of him having used €20 million of public funds to renovate his private residence.

Eliecar Garcia, the head of Interpol in Venezuela has been accused of smuggling 350 kg of cocaine aboard a private plane into the Dominican Republic, according to Venezuelan authorities.

The Panama Papers should be interpreted more carefully on behalf of the media and the public considering that the data has likely been obtained illegally outside any judicial inquiry thus without insurance as for the authenticity.

World military expenditure totaled almost $1.7 trillion in 2015, an increase of 1% in real terms from 2014 and the first increase in military spending since 2011, the SIPRI assessed. China’s expenditure rose by 7.4% to $215 billion, Russia’s by 7.5% to $66.4 billion.

After Lebanon, this is the turn of Algeria who’s in hot waters to have some tension with Saudi Arabia who’s been reminded by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika Algeria’s “principle of non-interference into other States internal affairs” in a direct reference to Yemen.

US Senators Richard Burr and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) have introduced draft legislation that would give federal judges a sweeping authority to require access to encrypted data from technology companies, following tensions between the FBI and Apple on the San Bernardino terrorist case.

Samsung Electronics Co., after being dethroned in 2014 and 2015 as the No. 1 smartphone brand in China, India and Indonesia, has won back consumers in these key markets with a simple policy: slashing prices.

Donald Trump’s bid for the White House got a boost from New York City’s former mayor. Rudy Giuliani is planning to vote for Trump in the upcoming New York Republican primary.

British Prime Minister David Cameron admitted he profited from father’s Panama offshore trust, sold stake in Blairmore investment fund, which featured in Panama Papers, for £31,500 four months before entering No 10.