Musk and Twitter, inflation woes, and a palm oil crisis | Technology


Elon Musk set tongues wagging with an audacious bid to purchase Twitter this week, whereas inflation woes continued to mount internationally.

In the meantime, Sri Lanka’s worst political and financial disaster in many years continued to upend the lives of the nation’s 20 million folks.

Listed here are a number of the numbers you need to know to get on prime of this week’s information.

$44bn

The quantity Elon Musk will spend to purchase Twitter beneath a deal introduced on Monday. The prospect of the world’s richest man controlling one of the influential social media networks – the place world leaders, CEOs and popular culture icons commingle – has polarised commentators.

To many on the political left, Musk’s acquisition would imply an intemperate billionaire having a harmful diploma of management over info and a possible watering down of requirements in opposition to hate speech and extremism.

On the precise, many view Musk’s devil-may-care perspective and feedback in opposition to censorship as a welcome antidote to the stifling political correctness and progressive hegemony of Silicon Valley.

Questions have additionally been raised about how Musk would take care of stress from censorship-happy international locations like China and India, the place the Tesla CEO has appreciable monetary pursuits.

Musk, who is understood for his libertarian views, has forged the acquisition as a victory totally free speech, describing Twitter as “the digital city sq. the place issues important to the way forward for humanity are debated”.

Whether or not or not Musk can pull off his imaginative and prescient of a digital oasis totally free speech, his stewardship of the notoriously rowdy social media platform shall be carefully watched – and vigorously debated – within the coming months.

5.1 %

The quantity by which Australia’s client costs rose within the first quarter in contrast with the earlier 12 months.

The patron value index’s 2.1 % rise in January-March – equating to a 5.1 % annual rise – marked the best charge of inflation since 2001.

The surging costs have raised expectations that Australia’s central financial institution may increase its benchmark rate of interest, presently sitting at a file low of 0.1 %, at its subsequent coverage assembly on Tuesday.

Whereas Australia’s surging costs have but to match the highs seen in america or Europe, the place inflation is working at an eye-watering 8.5 % and seven.4 %, respectively, the rising price of residing within the “fortunate nation” has change into a key voter subject forward of subsequent month’s federal election.

As it’s, Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s conservative Liberal-Nationwide coalition is already lagging the centre-left Labor Social gathering within the polls.

An rate of interest hike by the Reserve Financial institution of Australia simply weeks earlier than the Might 21 vote – triggering increased mortgage funds for thousands and thousands of Australians – may make the incumbent’s possibilities of victory even worse.

60 %

The portion of the world’s palm oil that comes from Indonesia, which has banned all exports of the product because of inflation and provide considerations.

The export ban has put additional stress on international costs of meals and cooking oil, which had been already rising due to pandemic-related disruptions, the struggle in Ukraine and poor harvests because of adversarial climate.

On Thursday, palm oil futures in Malaysia, the worldwide benchmark for costs, rose almost 10 %.

Palm oil is the most well-liked edible oil worldwide, and usually used for cooking and manufacturing meals akin to bread, chocolate and biscuits. The oil can also be extensively used within the manufacturing of cosmetics and biofuel.

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has justified the ban as mandatory to make sure the “availability of cooking oil within the home market turns into ample and inexpensive” amid a power scarcity of the product within the nation.

Many economists say the ban will exacerbate the specter of meals insecurity at an already perilous time for weak folks in growing international locations all over the world.

$600m

The quantity of monetary help the World Financial institution has agreed to offer Sri Lanka so the island nation can meet cost necessities for important imports.

Sri Lanka is within the midst of its worst monetary disaster since independence after a dramatic drop in its overseas trade reserves sparked double-digit inflation and left the federal government struggling to pay for imports of gasoline, medicines and meals.

Colombo has appealed to a number of international locations and help organisations for help to cowl speedy important bills whereas it negotiates a bailout bundle with the Worldwide Financial Fund.

Hundreds of individuals have rallied within the capital in latest weeks calling on President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and different members of the politically linked household to resign over the deepening financial disaster.

Leave a Reply