British Shake n’ Canadian Break

No Natural Disasters Here, Metaphorical or Otherwise

On this episode of Observatory Media's Chatter, we check out a shake-up of British politics and a sort of break-up on Canada's side of the world. First up, though, is the political drama that has engulfed the Gulf. Saudi Arabia and some its closest friends cut off diplomatic and transportation ties to Qatar this week, citing the tiny nation's alleged support for terrorism and Iran. Is this a shock or has it been a long time coming? What does it mean for the citizens of Qatar? Will it impact OPECs efforts to raise the price of crude? Next up, we pop over to Canada to talk Chrystia Freeland and what her break-up speech signals for US-Canada relations moving forward. Did we throw

OM’s Chatter: Africa Bits & ME Skits

No Natural Disasters Here, Metaphorical or Otherwise

On this episode of OM's Chatter, Vennesa and Karan discuss Trump, Venezuela, OPEC, and a new segment called 'Africa Bits'. First up is Trump's wander in the Middle East and what effect the show he's putting on will have on his awful ratings (if any). Then we wander over to Brazil to catch up with VP turned President Temer and why his new title might be short lived (spoiler: more or less the same reason Rousseff got the boot). Third, we take a look at the recent OPEC meeting and what it means for Venezuela in light of continued hyperinflation, protests, and food and medical shortages. Last, but certainly not least, we turn to Vennesa's maybe regular 'Africa Bits', in which she continues to pick

Housing Bubbles & Oil Troubles

The Round-Up Three Elections Gunman Referendum

The World in a Flash This week's Round-Up covers news in Canada, OPEC, Troubles between Syria and Russia, and more! Canada’s Population New Over 36 Million Thanks to preliminary numbers released by Statistics Canada this week we now know that the population of the True North has now topped 36 million. Most of this is due to the large influx of immigrants and the large influx of Syrian refugees. The increase is being hailed as one of the largest increases since the baby boom in the 1950s. While this is an interesting milestone, it remains to be seen if we can manage to keep up the infrastructure and services needed for a larger population. US/Russia Syria Talks Break Down In a disappointing (and deadly)

The 28 Pages & Saudi-American Relations

Obama and Saudi King Abdullah

Late last week, a mysterious portion of the Joint Inquiry into Intelligence Community Actions Before and After the Terrorist Attacks of the September 11th, 2001, which had been classified since the report's release, was declassified following a two-year long declassification review. Know colloquially as the "28 pages" (the count is wrong but the name stuck), the document describes what the inquiry found regarding possible links between officials from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and individuals known to be involved in 9/11. This revelation, which is likely to irritate Saudi officials, comes at a time where Saudi Arabia is feeling the heat from all sides. On the international strategic front, Saudis are confronted with increasingly overt meddling of Iran in Syria and Iraq, a move which

From Oil Conflicts to Rail Stops

The Round-Up Three Elections Gunman Referendum

The World in a Flash This week's Round-Up covers the effects of oil from the OPEC to fights in Nigeria, the Canadian scuffle with a Chinese diplomat, and more! Niger Delta ‘Avengers’ Strike Chevron June 1st, the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) militant group blew up two Chevron oil wells in the the region located in the south of Nigeria. The attack follows the deadline of NDA who are calling for all foreign oil companies to leave the region. Unrest in the region has been growing to levels not seen since and amnesty agreement ended hostilities in 2009. The Nigerian economy has been severely hit with the low oil price, coupled with hostilities contributing to nearly a 50 per cent reduction in oil output

Norwegian Diversification: If You Want a Bigger Basket, You Need More Eggs

OPEC headquarters

In my last article, Statoil or: How I Learned to Follow Norway and Stabilize World Oil Prices, I described the need for state-owned enterprises (SOEs) in the oil industry to follow the example of Statoil ASA, in responding to the risks of foreign ownership, corruption, and lack of diversification. This article will explore the issue of incentivizing these governments to relinquish some of the influence they hold over their industries. As a result, these countries would see more investment, and global petroleum prices would stabilize. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) was created as a response to the influence and domination of the world’s petroleum corporations. Wanting more control of their domestic industries, the governments of Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi