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28 Dec 06. Ericsson to establish China program together with the Stockholm School of Economics in Sweden. Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) and the Stockholm School of Economics have agreed to create a program aiming to generate in-depth knowledge of Chinese business and economics and China’s impact on global trade patterns. The program will create a base for a unique competence center in Stockholm, Sweden. The Ericsson China program comprises several components designed to support the capacity of Sweden to follow developments in China, strengthen Swedish-Chinese relations in economics, business and research and its impact on the world economy. The program embraces economic and business research, education, seminars and conference programs as well as advice. The program will start January 1, 2007 with Ericsson and the Stockholm School of Economics as co-founders. The program is guided by an advisory board consisting of representatives from Ericsson, the Stockholm School of Economics and the China Center for Economical Research at Peking University.

19 Dec 06. The Fleet: Non-operational Ships. In a Written Answer (19 Dec 06), the Armed Forces’ Minister stated that HMS INVINCIBLE was “the only
vessel currently defined as being in extended readiness” and that it would take approximately 18 months to return her to the Fleet. Five other ships were “at a low readiness state” and would take over six months to be made operational.
Comment: The Minister did not identify the five ships “at a low readiness state”. There has been recent media speculation that a further reduction in the size of the Fleet is under discussion within the MoD. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0701, 01 Jan 07)

Jan 07. The Royal Institute of Navigation – the UK’s leading voice in all areas of navigation, from satnav to shipping, and from pigeons to pilots – is re-launching on January 1 2007, and is setting out to gain even more recognition of the importance of navigation to the 21st century world. The Institute has always been ‘royal by decree’ – meaning that it could have lost the ‘Royal’ in its name when the monarch changed. But now it has been granted a Royal Charter, which means it’s Royal in perpetuity, and takes its place alongside other British national institutions, from the Royal Aeronautical Society to the Scouts, from the Royal National Institute for the Blind to the Royal National Lifeboat Institute. And like those other cornerstones of British life, the Royal Institute of Navigation has a vital role to play in its area of expertise, and aims to use its new status to raise the profile of navigation in government, in academia, and in everyday life. To mark the relaunch, the RIN is undertaking a thorough rebranding exercise, beginning with its website, www.rin.org.uk. The Institute’s world-renowned academic Journal of Navigation is also set to move from three to four issues per year, and during 2007 will begin production in full colour. (Source: ASD Network)

03 Jan 07. UK firm Plastic Logic has said it will build the world’s first factory to produce plastic electronic devices. The Cambridge-based company has secured $100m (£50.6m) venture capital funding for the German plant. Once built it will manufacture circuits crucial for the development of novel gadgets such as electronic paper. Unlike silicon, plastic circuits can be made using simple printing techniques and could dramatically reduce the price of consumer electronic goods. The factory will be built in Dresden, known for its strength in silicon technology. (Source: BBC)

Jan 07. Transport Aircraft: Numbers. As announced on 20 Jul 05, the MoD plans that the RAF will have 55 tactical and strategic transport aircraft in 2015: 25 C-130J (but no C-130K); 25 A400M and five C-17. Plans for the C-17A Globemasters were subsequently (4 Aug 06) confirmed in that the four currently leased are to be bought from Boeing in 2008 and a fifth aircraft delivered during the same year.
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