Monopoly the way we know it is not much of a game…


A German Monopoly board in the middle of a gam...
Monopoly - the only game in town

In Monopoly, whichever player is banker is supposed to keep the bank money separate to the money he’s also doing business with in the market. He’s also supposed to run the bank according to certain rules and if he was cheating it’d be game over. They should bring out a new version of Monopoly in which the Banker is allowed to cheat all he likes and always automatically wins, and another player is called The Government and that player chooses from the Chance and Community Chest cards for the other players instead of just getting them to take the next one in a shuffled pack. The Government cannot only do it to the banker – they automatically give the Banker the best card. Banker and Government get to throw three dice instead of two, and they are also allowed to compulsorily purchase other player’s properties, and also send them to Jail for two turns if they complain about the unfairness of the rules.

That modern update to the famous board game would be most enlightening. Nobody would play it given the choice, but in reality of course we don’t really have a choice. After all, there’s a monopoly of government in any country and there’s an oligopoly of banks.

Poland is Europe’s white goods leader


Front-loading washing machine
Could Poland become the new leader in monetising laundry? A "pralka", yesterday.

Poland’s production of household appliances is expected to grow some 5% this year. The country is expected to produce and export 15.5 million washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators and cookers. Poland has already beaten Germany and is about to get ahead of ItalyDziennik Gazeta Prawna” reports.

The so called large household appliances made this year in Poland will be worth the record amount of PLN 3 billion, the newspaper underlines. A lot of it is owing to Samsung Electronics who purchased a washing machine and refrigerators manufacturing plant in Wronki from Amica and announced that it would invest nearly USD 170 million in the development of this plant. Samsung Electronics is also to transfer its production from other European plants to Wronki. The investments are underway.
“Dziennik Gazeta Prawna” found out that Samsung Electronics says it is possible that production in Poland will be expanded with manufacturing heating equipment like ovens, stoves and plates. There is a large demand for this kind of appliances in the EU. According to analysts, demand for heating equipment will remain at around 30% of total annual production, “Dziennik Gazeta Prawna” notes. (Source: gazeta.pl)

“Cyprus: a vehicle for international transactions and investments”


David James, English goalkeeper
Sorry, not quite that David James speaking here...

Conference

Cyprus: a vehicle for international transactions and investments”

Intercontinental Hotel,  Emilii Platter 49, Warsaw

16 June 2011, 8.00am – 11.00am
(Language:  English)

This event is aimed at introducing Cyprus companies as vehicles for international transactions and investments covering the key requirements applied by the authorities and the banking system in Cyprus and Poland.

The event is addressed to Owners, Chief Executives, Financial Executives and Board Members of companies with international perspectives.

Experienced professionals and speakers of Baker Tilly Poland and Baker Tilly Klitou of Cyprus will be presenting a range of topics, suggesting practical solutions and sharing their experience.  A Q&A session before the close of the event will give participants the opportunity to talk directly with our speakers in order to raise their queries or obtain additional information.

Programme:

8.00 – 8.35 am     –    Business breakfast

8.35 – 8.40 am     –    Welcome address

                                 David James, International Liaison Partner, Baker Tilly Poland

8.40 – 8.55 am     –    “Cyprus transactions: Polish taxation”

                                 Steven Foster, Baker Tilly Poland

8.55 – 9.10 am     –    “Cyprus: an attractive investment and business destination”

Marios Klitou, CEO of Baker Tilly Klitou

9.10 – 9.25 am     –    “IFRS  Regulations in Cyprus”

                                 Christodoulos Loulloupis, Director, Audit Services, Baker Tilly Klitou

9.25 – 9.40 am     –    “Tax in Cyprus and structuring ideas”

                                 Therapon Mafkas, Director, Tax Services, Baker Tilly Klitou

9.40 – 9.55 am     –    “Collective Investment Schemes

Chris Koutouroushis, General Manager, Bizserve Consultants Ltd

9.55 – 10.10 am   –    Presentation from a Cyprus bank on “International Banking in Cyprus”

10.10 – 10.25 am –    “Polish-Cypriot success stories – Enhancing investment opportunities”

David James, International Liaison Partner, Baker Tilly Poland

10.25 – 10.55 am –    Questions & Answers

11.00 am              –    Close of Conference

In order to obtain your free registration, please contact mjaniga@bakertillypoland.eu  by Wednesday, 8th June 2011. If demand exceeds space available, registration will be first come, first served.

We look forward to seeing you at the Conference!

What are you on?


Research on Iran. by Negar Mottahedeh Social M...
They might be on something...

At University, one of my Northern Irish friends used to say “What are you on?” if he heard anyone saying or saw anyone doing something he found strange. I believe he meant “what medications are you on, to make you say or do that?”

Well, today I’d like to ask my viewers the same question but in a slightly different context, namely, what social media platforms are you on?

I’m going to put a few of them, by no means all, into a poll, and please put a tick by all the services where you BOTH have an account AND use that account fairly regularly – the benchmark would be if someone you knew or an old friend tried to get in contact with you on there, could they do so and you see it and get back to them reasonably quickly, as in within a couple of weeks, say.

I have included Facebook, Myspace, Digg, Youtube and Twitter, which are largely of non-business use, and the rest are more the business networking sort of platforms, liked Linked-in, Viadeo, Xing, Ushi, Goldenline. I also included Google Latitude, which is in my view a new class of social media linking in GPS location to all the other things going on in social media. I’ve included in one line the fora of any newspaper you read that has discussion of articles where a regular crowd sometimes gathers.

Please add in comments, other than anything else you might wish to say about the relative advantages or disadvantages of these social media sites, any social platforms I’ve left off.

And please check back in after a few weeks, if you’re curious how it pans out, especially if you’re among the first to answer.

Remember – this poll has multiple tickable options, and there’s a supplemental question of how many ticks you put in – this is just so we can all see how many services our fellow internet people are using.

Which Set of Laws to Use in Real Estate Transactions?


Skärva - The country estate
Some international real estate, yesterday

This morning on social media I added the following to a discussion on the above question. Some others had given similar answers, but there were other divergent answers.

The most important jurisdiction is where the property in question is physically located. This determines whether the mortgages or charges which the lender will wish to place on the property are properly drawn up and registered.

Let’s imagine a scenario where an inhabitant of country A buys a building in country B and receives a loan to do so from country C. If Country B has law that says a resident of country A needs a permit to buy property from country B, and the person from A has bought without the permit, then in that scenario any rights that the buyer has granted the lender will automatically also not be enfoceable on the property.

Which doesn’t mean that I can’t use Country C law for the loan contract – probably you can, but in a way that also takes account of the risks and vagaries of the law in country B and also maybe even Country A.

For these things you need firms of real estate lawyers and tax accountants that are international. Not just networks, but firms where the people putting the deal together include experts from the different countries involved working in each other’s offices or working together so closely and regularly, that they may as well be in each others’ offices. Good professional international communication is the key to success in these cases, and not every firm seems able to deliver it.

Tax is also a consideration, but most of all you have to make sure that you are compliant with the laws of the place the property is. The worst things that can go wrong will go wrong if that isn’t sorted out first and foremost.

Something to think about


image

I think I’ll let the map speak for itself. It was the main story in the weekend edition of Rzeczpospolita newspaper.