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Davos 2019: ‘New winds blowing’ Mike Pompeo says Brexit shows ‘POSITIVE element’ | City & Business | Finance





Fears of a slowdown in economic growth and growing concerns over climate change and the damage to the environment are set to dominate the January 22 to 25 Alpine meeting. World leaders and top CEOs will meet to discuss how to steer policy amid worries of damaging trade wars, fractious international relations and political uncertainty Brexit. But among the top names not attending Davos this year include Prime Minister Theresa May, US President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron. The start of Davos 2019 comes after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) slashed its global growth forecast.

The IMF predicted the global economy to grow at 3.5 percent in 2019 and 3.6 percent in 2020, down 0.2 and 0.1 percentage point respectively from last October’s forecasts.

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde told a briefing: “After two years of solid expansion, the world economy is growing more slowly than expected and risks are rising.

“Does that mean a global recession is around the corner? No.

“But the risk of a sharper decline in global growth has certainly increased.”


Prince William interviewing Sir David Attenborough

Davos 2019: Mike Pompeo addressing the WEF via video link (Image: EPA)

Prince William interviewing Sir David Attenborough

Davos 2019: Prince William interviewing Sir David Attenborough (Image: GETTY)


US secretary of state Mike Pompeo addressed the sumit via video link, answering questions about the China trade war and the US government shutdown.

He said of the shutdown: “We all hope that it will end fairly quickly. Political fights in the United States are time-honored traditions.”

Speaking of Brexit and the recent election of Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, Mr Pompeo described the changes as “new winds … blowing across the world”.

This, he claims, shows a “positive element”.


Brazil’s new president, Jair Bolsonaro, had the honour of the first major key note speech in Davos today.

Speaking to big business leaders and major investors, he vowed to make Brazil one of the top 50 countries to do business with.

Mr Bolsonaro said he would work to open up Brazil’s relatively closed economy, reduce and simplify taxes, privatise assets and give his new justice minister the tools to tackle corruption.


Sir David warned “the future of the natural world is in our hands” as he claimed mankind has “never been more powerful”.

The broadcasting legend said: ”We can wreck it with ease. We can wreck it without even knowing we are doing it.

“And if we wreck the natural world, in the end, we wreck ourselves.”

He urged people “not to waste the riches of the natural world on which we depend” and to respect the planet by not throwing away food or power.

Sir David added: “Just care for the natural world of which we are an essential part.”


Prince William has arrived in Davos to interview Sir David Attenborough.

The Duke of Cambridge, who is patron of the Tusk conservation charity, has himself warned that the clock is ticking towards a tipping point when our impact on the environment will be irreversible.

Prince William described it as a “personal treat” to be interviewing Sir David Attenborough live on stage at the World Economic Forum.

The Duke said: “Normally I have to endure people asking me questions so it’s quite nice to be turning the tables for once.”

Prince William described Sir David’s programmes as being “seen be literally billions of people world-wide”.

axel weber

Davos 2019: Axel Weber, chairman of UBS (Image: REUTERS)


Carl-Johan Hagman, the head of Swedish ferry operator Stena AB, fears major disruption in the event of a hard Brexit but remained hopeful of a solution that will allow business as usual.

The comments from Carl-Johan Hagman come little over two months before the March 29 Brexit date.

He said: ”We’re really hoping for and banking on the fact that the people will come to their senses and that we will have regimes that will ensure that we can continue the way that we’re doing today.

“And we just keep our fingers crossed and hope that we will have well thought-through policymakers that will make good policy, I hope.”


Should Britain head back to the polls to vote on a second referendum on Brexit?

As Theresa May struggles to pull a deal through the Commons, rebel MPs have floated the idea of going back to the start over Britain’s membership of the European Union.

Andy Halford, chief financial officer of Asia-focused bank Standard Chartered, believes there is a “reasonably compelling argument” for handing back decision-making power to the people.

Speaking at Davos, he told Reuters: “The Houses of Parliament are there democratically to represent the people and therefore ostensibly the decision should lie with them.

“However, in a situation where there is a gridlock in that body… going directly to the people and hearing exactly what the people would want to do now that they have had two more years of information being fed to them — that has a strong argument for being a way forward.”


Ray Dalio, founder and chairman of hedge fund Bridgewater Associates, is forecasting significantly slower growth rates in Europe, China and the US.

Monetary policies will have to ease in the next two years, he suggested.

He said: “The US, Europe, China – all of those will experience a greater level of slowing, probably a greater level of disappointment.

“I think there’s a reasonable chance that by end of that, monetary policy and fiscal policy will have to become easier relative to what is now discounted in the markets.

He added: “What scares me the most longer-term is that we have limitations to monetary policy, which is our most valuable tool, at the same time as we have greater political and social antagonism.

“So the next downturn worries me the most.”


Another big name has dropped out of Davos.

Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih will no longer be attending the WEF.

He was due to appear on two panels but decided to cancel his apperance at the last minute.

It is unclear why Mr Al-Falih will not be making the trip to Switzerland.

Security at Davos

Davos 2019: Security at the WEF event (Image: GETTY)

prince william

Davos 2019: Prince William is due to interview Sir David Attenborough live on stage at the WEF (Image: EPA)


Axel Weber, chairman of Swiss bank UBS, said he believes an unorderly Brexit would be in nobody’s interest.

Mr Weber went on to suggest Britain leaving the European Union without a deal is looking “increasingly unlikely”

He said: “A no-deal would create real spill-overs not just for the United Kingdom but for the European and for the global economy.”

Mr Weber also predicted China will attract an additional $250 billion in investment in the next few quarters.


Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the IEA, warned to only expect 50,000 less barrels of oil for every five million electric cars on the road.

Global oil demand is expected to increase by 1.3 million barrels per day.

The price of oil remains about 20 percent up on the 18-month low registered in late December, but investors appear to remain concerned about the trade war between the US and China.

Traders seem unwilling to push crude much higher without evidence that relations between Washington and Beijing are improving, analysts said.


Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa last night cancelled his appearance at Davos.

President Mnangagwa was instead turning his attention to investigation violence against civilians after up to a dozen people, according to human rights groups, were killed during demonstrations last week.

The demonstrations were triggered nine days ago by 150 percent hikes in price of fuel decreed by President Mnangagwa.

The Zimbabwean leader had been expected to pitch for foreign investments at Davos in a whirlwind visit before flying home.


Prime Minister Theresa May, US President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron will be skipping Davos this year as they battle respective political issues.

Mrs May is struggling to break a Brexit deadlock, while President Trump continues to grapple with the partial shutdown of his government and President Macron deals with the fallout from the so-called Yellow Vest protests.

It is currently uncertain if Russian leader Vladimir Putin will make an appearance in Switzerland.


The Duke of Cambridge is preparing to interview naturalist Sir David Attenborough live on stage at the World Economic Forum.

Prince William will discuss the urgent challenges facing the next generation of environmental leaders with the veteran broadcaster.

Kensington Palace said the Duke would talk to Sir David about his decades of work highlighting the importance of the natural world.

The Prince has described the Blue Planet and Dynasties narrator as having “the single most important impact in my conservation thinking”.


Davos 2019 is officially underway and here is what can be expected from day one in Switzerland:

08:30AM: Press Conference: Meet the Co-Chairs

10:20AM: Shaping Globalization 4.0

13:15AM: The Duke of Cambridge interviews Sir David Attenborough

14:30AM: Special Address by Jair Bolsonaro, President of Brazil

16:00AM: Safeguarding Our Planet


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Ottawa’s not-for-profit book publisher provides Ottawa authors with hardcover printing





Are you a writer in Ottawa seeking to become a self-published author? It has now become much easier to put your work up for sale and exceed your book sales target.

In previous times, authors were only able to publish their work traditionally and this process had many restrictions. Now with self-publishing, it is very easy for writers to get their work in front of their readers without spending lots of time and money.

Even with self-publishing, it is still important to choose the right platform as many authors who are in a haste to publish, easily fall victim by investing in the wrong platform and overlooking the key principles of success.

Despite how popular self-publishing has become amongst aspiring authors, only a handful of self-published books achieve high sales. In fact, only less than 1 per cent of most self-published books are really good and less than 5 per cent can pass as decent. 

Now, with professional guidance, self-publishing platforms like stand out from the rest particularly because of their commitment to ensuring that your work is of top quality, allowing it to attain mass marketability effortlessly.

Based out of Ottawa, Agora Publishing is a not-for-profit book publishing agency that has over the years supported self-published authors to achieve their book sales target. The agency has been in operation for over 20 years, consistently serving writers all around the globe who seek to take advantage of their numerous full-service options which are not provided by other competing platforms like Lulu or CreateSpace.

Unlike other comparative services that are driven by for-profit ethics, Agora Publishing pays critical attention to the quality and readiness of the writer’s manuscript, copy editing, book cover design and other areas of the book production and marketing process. They also provide professional hardcover printing services, which is a rarity for most self-publishing platform who only focus on producing digital copies.

While digital media has disrupted other industries such as news publishing and the entertainment business, a lot of readers still love to own physical books. According to a 2019 report by the Association of American Publishers, of almost $26 billion made from book sales in the U.S., book print made up over 90 per cent ($22.6 billion) of sales revenue compared to $2.04 billion for ebooks. These figures include genres such as trade, education as well as fiction and points to the fact that hardcover books are still very relevant.

“I think the e-book bubble has burst somewhat, sales are flattening off, I think the physical object is very appealing. Publishers are producing incredibly gorgeous books, so the cover designs are often gorgeous, they’re beautiful objects,” said Meryl Halls, managing director of the Booksellers’ Association in the U.K. in CNBC report. stands out from other self-publishing platforms and has become a great option for writers who want to self-publish high quality and mass marketable books in Ottawa in both digital and print formats.

The agency provides a host of professional community-driven services which include ISBN registration, book cover design, the book’s internal graphic design and typesetting, copy editing or substantive editing, book website design, author news blog design, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), the writing of informative promotional articles, distribution, printing, and many more.

Even with a captivating manuscript, having a below-par book cover can contribute to a dent in sales. Some new authors try to save cost by patronizing cheap homemade book covers that look inferior and this can drastically affect sales as readers still “judge a book by its cover”—especially cheap-looking books.

Nonetheless, platforms such as seek to serve writers in Ottawa with free professional consultation and advice on the readiness of their manuscript for production and a hands-on approach to ensuring that writers are provided with a high level of service at all levels of the production process. This way, your book goes through rigorous quality checks to ensure that only the best is made available to the public.

Agora Publishing has built a successful roadmap for its authors which includes their book production and marketing strategies. Their team of professionals work with authors to print highly durable and beautiful hardcover books with quality prints to attract the attention of book buyers.

Racing into the world of self-publishing can hit you with a cruel reality, therefore the only chance for success is having proper planning and preparation. provides Ottawa writers with expert services, handling the entire process for you to ensure your book attains the desired success almost instantly.

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Book Self-Publishing: is the best choice for Ottawa authors





For writers in Ottawa, it is now easier than ever to put your work up for sale by becoming a self-published author. Unlike traditional publishing, self-publishing makes it very easy for writers to get their work in front of their readers without spending lots of time and money.

However, for many self-published authors who are in a haste to publish, they easily fall victim by overlooking key principles of success, leading to the failure of their books in achieving the desired sell-out rate.

Quite a large number of authors who are new to self-publishing get so many basic things wrong. Now, with professional guidance, self-publishing platforms like stand out from the rest particularly because of their commitment to ensuring that your work is of top quality, allowing it to attain mass marketability effortlessly.

Unlike other self-publishing platforms (CreateSpace, Lulu etc.), is a great option for writers who want to self-publish high quality and mass marketable books in Ottawa.

Published authors earn money through book sales by receiving royalties—a percentage of the book’s retail price. The obvious way a published author makes money is through book sales. In traditional publishing, you could expect to receive around 8 to 15 per cent royalty on each book sale depending on your status as an author, the publisher, or your target market.

However, authors in Ottawa are choosing to self-publish with Agora Publishing as they can earn much more money from royalties. When you self-publish your book, you can earn much more in royalties.

One of the most common reasons for poor sales for Ottawa authors is being in a haste to self-publish a book without adequate planning. Some upcoming authors share the misconception that having a book means it’s go-to-market ready. But there must be adequate planning, enough promotion, a considerable amount of followership, amongst others.

Racing into the world of self-publishing can hit you with a cruel reality, therefore the only chance for success is having proper planning and preparation. Professional services like provides Ottawa writers with expert services, handling the entire process for you to ensure your book meets the highest standards. This way, you are certain that your work would attain success almost instantly.

Irrespective of how captivating your book might be, to capture the attention of readers, there needs to be some form of marketing. However, a lot of self-publishers make the mistake of assuming that once they’ve acquired the services of a publicist, listed it on Amazon and made social media posts, it is enough marketing.

Contrary to that belief, getting your book as much attention as needed requires you to exhaust every available marketing options at your disposal. provides professional marketing services to Ottawa authors and this makes it possible for their books to achieve a high number of sales.

For most traditional publishers in Ottawa, they tend to prioritize authors who have already created a specific niche. This leaves aspiring and relatively unknown authors with nothing more to do than wait in line before their book gets any sort of attention. Self-publishing is a much appealing option because no one is excluded or given preferential treatment; anyone has the potential to become a best-selling author. If you have good material, you can publish your book with professional guidance from Agora Publishing.

If you are worried about your book getting rejected by traditional publishers in Ottawa, self-publication with Agora Publishing is the best option for writers. It doesn’t matter how controversial your content is, opting to self-publish gets your work into the marketplace faster.

For self-published authors in Ottawa, they have more control over their work and choose any country, through any channel, and in any format (print, eBook, or audio) they want it sold. With help from Agora Publishing, authors can decide where and when to sell the book and the best way to promote it to reach a global audience.

Nonetheless, even with a perfect manuscript, having a below-par book cover can contribute to a dent in sales. For some new authors—in a bid to save cost—they tend to patronize homemade book covers that carry an inferior look. This can drastically affect sales as readers and book buyers do “judge a book by its cover”, especially terribly cheap-looking book covers.

Another quality check for any book that more often than not fails is the book description. Having a book description that is two-sentence long doesn’t qualify either does a lengthy preview of the first chapter.

Nonetheless, platforms such as provides Ottawa authors with unprecedented quality control and checks on all books to ensure that only the best is made available to the public.

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Book Self-Publishing: provides quality control that Amazon’s KDP lacks





Many of today’s best-selling writers have chosen the path of self-publishing to become authors, bypassing traditional publishing. However, getting a highly successful self-published book can be quite a difficult task.

Technology has opened up new possibilities in the book publishing industry, changing the way publishers communicate with authors. Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) has adopted a more digital experience for customer interaction, but there is a tendency to overlook the fact that self-publishing platforms such as provide much better quality control.

While the implementation of chatbots for customer interaction seems like a fascinating idea, human interaction is still the most preferred choice of communication. Verbal communication is faster, easier, and more effective than typing messages back and forth.

According to the Harvard Business Review, “Humans generally speak at 125-175 words per minute and can listen at a rate of up to 450 words per minute. In contrast, the average typist does 38-40 words per minute — and that’s on a full-fledged keyboard, not on a mobile phone.”

The success of a book is attributed to the level of planning, preparation and the amount of hard work put into it before it is launched into the market. For authors, even after hitting the shelves, there is still the need to diligently follow up on book sales and revise your plan wherever necessary.

While the idea of using a chatbot for customer communication might sound very progressive, the most preferred choice for authors remains human interaction and there are various reasons for that.

In the younger generations, many people are getting accustomed to the use of automated forms of customer service through mediums such as chatbots. However, human interaction is overall still the most preferred choice.

When trying to solve a customer service issue, 83 per cent of consumers would rather talk to a human than lay complaints via digital channels, according to research from Accenture Strategy. Despite the ability for Amazon’s KDP chatbot to respond to queries much faster or provide similar answers, it simply cannot provide the same feeling and assurance that speaking to a human at Agora Publishing provides.

Additionally, Agora Publishing provides offline accessibility while Amazon’s KDP chatbot requires internet connection before it can be accessed. Therefore, you would need to either download the app or visit their website to initiate a conversation with the chatbot or access the knowledge base content. This isn’t very reliable as in the event of poor internet connectivity, human-based customer service would always provide the authors with the required support.

Robots would always be robots; and while Amazon’s KDP chatbot is built on a framework loaded with different algorithms and scripts, no amount of programming would be enough to replace a human’s distinct ability to read subtle details from a person’s mood or language.

For example, if an author contacts a publisher and becomes agitated due to poor sales during the first few days of publishing, even the most sophisticated chatbot would never be able to replicate the warm, calm and empathetic response that a customer service representative would provide.

Additionally, in the cases of delayed publishing, having a conversation with an actual person who can provide a detailed explanation and subsequently apologize for the delays can be much more soothing to the customer than interacting with a chatbot.

Amazon’s KDP chatbot is capable of providing authors with basic help on some common issues, but unlike Agora Publishing, they are incapable of resolving every challenge that authors often need assistance solving.

For example, if an author needs help deciding what name would be best for a biography a deceased loved one and has questions about the cover design, royalty rates and marketing techniques. All of these multiple questions would come sequentially with each question and answer leading to the next. A chatbot would be unable to handle this kind of complexity due to the multiple requests being made by the author.

In conclusion, while technology has made self-publishing much easier than before, a human agent is still the most effective way to communicate with publishers. They can sympathize with an author wherever necessary before proceeding to provide detailed responses to every query.

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