A German-African initiative, China's Silk Road, and more.
In early December Afghan fashion found a place in the Middle Eastern edition of Vogue magazine, lithe models posed in colorful, high-end gowns and accessories made by craftsmen from Afghanistan. The couture in Vogue’s pages was also featured in a United States-sponsored exhibition I visited here in Dubai focusing on Afghan exports, including carpets, fruits and nuts, and marble and precious stones.
Nepal and Japan are geographically distant but close in terms of culture, religion, way of life and sentiments. [...] Though diplomatic relations were established between Nepal and Japan only in 1956, a spiritual bond has existed since the introduction of Buddhism in Japan in the sixth century. This year, we are celebrating the diamond jubilee of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Nepal and Japan.
Two thousand years ago, merchants and caravans began moving between east and west along the Silk Road, trading goods, philosophy and technology. Now a modern Silk Road, rekindling trade and achieving common prosperity, is in the making. The Belt and Road Initiative, proposed by Chinese president Xi Jinping, has gained traction in the last three years, scholars and officials said.
In order to add momentum to African economies, Gerd Müller, Germany’s minister for economic cooperation and development, and Sigmar Gabriel, the country’s minister for economic affairs, have launched a joint initiative. The approach fits their understanding of how to manage globalisation equitably. [...] about 1000 of 400,000 internationally active German private-sector companies have invested in Africa so far.
For much of the past two decades, progressive foreign policy has been defined by what it is against—[...] But it is much less clear what a progressive foreign policy stands for, and what it would look like in practice. It is especially important to try to define one now, after the election of Donald Trump.
The New York–based training company aims to find and groom the best software developers in Africa — thousands of them. Since setting up campuses in 2014 in Lagos, Nigeria, and Nairobi, Kenya, Andela has been flooded with more than 40,000 applications. It selected 250 for paid, four-year fellowships working with tech leaders including Udacity, Microsoft and Facebook.
Several of the U.S. government’s development priorities in Vietnam can be traced back to events that damaged relations between the two countries during the Vietnam War. But USAID is now also looking ahead to what’s next, such as an innovative finance mechanism for forest protection, and supporting the country in adopting a more inclusive, modern health system post-PEPFAR procurement.