State of Palestine
Palestine the State of Palestine, is a de jure sovereign state in Western Asia claiming the West Bank and Gaza Strip with Jerusalem as the designated capital, although its administrative center is located in Ramallah. The entirety of territory claimed by the State of Palestine has been occupied by Israel since the Six-Day War in 1967. Palestine has a population of 4,816,503 as of 2016, ranked 123rd in the world. After World War II, in 1947, the United Nations adopted a Partition Plan for Mandatory Palestine recommending the creation of independent Arab and Jewish states and an internationalized Jerusalem. After the establishment of a Jewish state in Eretz Israel, to be known as the State of Israel on 14 May 1948, neighboring Arab armies invaded the former British mandate on the next day and fought the Israeli forces; the All-Palestine Government was established by the Arab League on 22 September 1948 to govern the Egyptian-controlled enclave in Gaza. It was soon recognized by all Arab League members except Transjordan.
Though jurisdiction of the Government was declared to cover the whole of the former Mandatory Palestine, its effective jurisdiction was limited to the Gaza Strip. Israel captured the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula from Egypt, the West Bank from Jordan, the Golan Heights from Syria in June 1967 following the Six-Day War. On 15 November 1988, Yasser Arafat, Chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization, in Algiers proclaimed the establishment of the State of Palestine. A year after the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993, the Palestinian National Authority was formed to govern the areas A and B in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Gaza would be ruled by Hamas in 2007, two years after the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza; the State of Palestine is recognized by 136 UN members and since 2012 has a status of a non-member observer state in the United Nations – which implies recognition of statehood. It is a member of the Arab League, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, G77, the International Olympic Committee and other international bodies.
Since the British Mandate, the term "Palestine" has been associated with the geographical area that covers the State of Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. General use of the term "Palestine" or related terms to the area at the southeast corner of the Mediterranean Sea beside Syria has been taking place since the times of Ancient Greece, with Herodotus writing of a "district of Syria, called Palaistine" in which Phoenicians interacted with other maritime peoples in The Histories; some other terms that have been used to refer to all or part of the geographical region of "Palestine" include Canaan, Land of Israel, Greater Syria, the Holy Land, Iudaea Province, Coele-Syria, "Israel HaShlema", Kingdom of Israel, Kingdom of Jerusalem, Retenu, Southern Syria, Southern Levant and Syria Palaestina. The areas claimed by the State of Palestine lie in the Levant; the Gaza Strip borders the Mediterranean Sea to the west, Egypt to the south, Israel to the north and east. The West Bank is bordered by Jordan to the east, Israel to the north and west.
Thus, the two enclaves constituting the area claimed by State of Palestine have no geographical border with one another, being separated by Israel. These areas would constitute the world's 163rd largest country by land area. In 1947, the UN adopted a partition plan for a two-state solution in the remaining territory of the mandate; the plan was accepted by the Jewish leadership but rejected by the Arab leaders, Britain refused to implement the plan. On the eve of final British withdrawal, the Jewish Agency for Israel declared the establishment of the State of Israel according to the proposed UN plan; the Arab Higher Committee did not declare a state of its own and instead, together with Transjordan and the other members of the Arab League of the time, commenced military action resulting in the 1948 Arab–Israeli War. During the war, Israel gained additional territories that were designated to be part of the Arab state under the UN plan. Egypt occupied the Gaza Strip and Transjordan occupied and annexed the West Bank.
Egypt supported the creation of an All-Palestine Government, but disbanded it in 1959. Transjordan never recognized it and instead decided to incorporate the West Bank with its own territory to form Jordan; the annexation was rejected by the international community. The Six-Day War in 1967, when Israel fought against Egypt and Syria, ended with Israel occupying the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, besides other territories. In 1964, when the West Bank was controlled by Jordan, the Palestine Liberation Organization was established there with the goal to confront Israel; the Palestinian National Charter of the PLO defines the boundaries of Palestine as the whole remaining territory of the mandate, including Israel. Following the Six-Day War, the PLO moved to Jordan, but relocated to Lebanon after Black September in 1971; the October 1974 Arab League summit designated the PLO as the "sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people" and reaffirmed "their right to establish an independent state of urgency."
In November 1974, the PLO was recognized as competent on all matters concerning the question of Palestine by the UN General Assembly granting them observer status as a "non-state entity" at the UN. After the 1988 Declaration of Independence, the UN General Assembly acknowledged the proclamation and decided to use the designation "Palestine" instead of "Palestine Liberation Organization" in the UN. In spite of thi
Nauru the Republic of Nauru and known as Pleasant Island, is an island country in Micronesia, a subregion of Oceania, in the Central Pacific. Its nearest neighbour is Banaba Island in 300 kilometres to the east, it further lies northwest of Tuvalu, north of the Solomon Islands, east-northeast of Papua New Guinea, southeast of the Federated States of Micronesia and south of the Marshall Islands. With only a 21-square-kilometre area, Nauru is the third-smallest state on the list of countries and dependencies by area behind Vatican City and Monaco, making it the smallest state in the South Pacific Ocean, the smallest island state, the smallest republic, its population is 11,347, making it the third smallest on the list of countries and dependencies by population, after the Vatican and Tuvalu. Settled by people from Micronesia and Polynesia c. 1000 BC, Nauru was annexed and claimed as a colony by the German Empire in the late 19th century. After World War I, Nauru became a League of Nations mandate administered by Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
During World War II, Nauru was occupied by Japanese troops, who were bypassed by the Allied advance across the Pacific. After the war ended, the country entered into United Nations trusteeship. Nauru gained its independence in 1968, became a member of the Pacific Community in 1969. Nauru is a phosphate-rock island with rich deposits near the surface, which allowed easy strip mining operations, it has some remaining phosphate resources which, as of 2011, are not economically viable for extraction. When the phosphate reserves were exhausted, the island's environment had been harmed by mining, the trust, established to manage the island's wealth diminished in value. To earn income, Nauru became a tax haven and illegal money laundering centre. From 2001 to 2008, again from 2012, it accepted aid from the Australian Government in exchange for hosting the Nauru Regional Processing Centre, an offshore Australian immigration detention facility; as a result of heavy dependence on Australia, many sources have identified Nauru as a client state of Australia.
Nauru was first inhabited by Polynesians at least 3,000 years ago. There were traditionally 12 clans or tribes on Nauru, which are represented in the twelve-pointed star on the country's flag. Traditionally, Nauruans traced their descent matrilineally. Inhabitants practised aquaculture: they caught juvenile ibija fish, acclimatised them to fresh water, raised them in the Buada Lagoon, providing a reliable source of food; the other locally grown components of their diet pandanus fruit. The name "Nauru" may derive from the Nauruan word Anáoero, which means'I go to the beach'; the British sea captain John Fearn, a whale hunter, became the first Westerner to visit Nauru, in 1798, calling it "Pleasant Island". From around 1830, Nauruans had contact with Europeans from whaling ships and traders who replenished their supplies fresh water, at Nauru. Around this time, deserters from European ships began to live on the island; the islanders firearms. The firearms were used during the 10-year Nauruan Tribal War that began in 1878.
After an agreement with Great Britain, Nauru was annexed by Germany in 1888 and incorporated into Germany's Marshall Islands Protectorate for administrative purposes. The arrival of the Germans ended the civil war, kings were established as rulers of the island; the most known of these was King Auweyida. Christian missionaries from the Gilbert Islands arrived in 1888; the German settlers called the island "Nawodo" or "Onawero". The Germans ruled Nauru for three decades. Robert Rasch, a German trader who married a Nauruan woman, was the first administrator, appointed in 1890. Phosphate was discovered on Nauru in 1900 by the prospector Albert Fuller Ellis; the Pacific Phosphate Company began to exploit the reserves in 1906 by agreement with Germany, exporting its first shipment in 1907. In 1914, following the outbreak of World War I, Nauru was captured by Australian troops. In 1919 it was agreed by the Allied and Associated Powers that His Britannic Majesty should be the administering authority under a League of Nations mandate.
The Nauru Island Agreement forged in 1919 between the governments of the United Kingdom and New Zealand provided for the administration of the island and for extraction of the phosphate deposits by an intergovernmental British Phosphate Commission. The terms of the League of Nations mandate were drawn up in 1920; the island experienced an influenza epidemic in 1920, with a mortality rate of 18 per cent among native Nauruans. In 1923, the League of Nations gave Australia a trustee mandate over Nauru, with the United Kingdom and New Zealand as co-trustees. On 6 and 7 December 1940, the German auxiliary cruisers Komet and Orion sank five supply ships in the vicinity of Nauru. Komet shelled Nauru's phosphate mining areas, oil storage depots, the shiploading cantilever. Japanese troops occupied Nauru on 25 August 1942; the Japanese built an airfield, bombed for the first time on 25 March 1943, preventing food supplies from being flown to Nauru. The Japanese deported 1,200 Nauruans to work as labourers in the Chuuk islands, occupied by Japan.
Nauru, bypassed and left to "wither on the vine" by US forces, was liberated on 13 September 1945, when commander Hisayaki Soeda surrendered the island to the Australian Army and the Royal Australian Navy. The surrender was accepted by Brigadier J. R. Stevenson, who represented Lieutenant General Vernon Sturdee, the commander of the First Australian Army, aboard the
Somalia the Federal Republic of Somalia (Somali: Jamhuuriyadda Federaalka Soomaaliya. Jumhūrīyah aṣ-Ṣūmāl al-Fīdirālīyah, is a country located in the Horn of Africa, it is bordered by Ethiopia to the west, Djabuti to the northwest, the Gulf of Aden to the north, the Guardafui Channel and Somali Sea to the east, Kenya to the southwest. Somalia has the longest coastline on Africa's mainland, its terrain consists of plateaus and highlands. Climatically, hot conditions prevail year-round, with periodic monsoon winds and irregular rainfall. Somalia has an estimated population of around 14.3 million. And has been described as the most culturally homogeneous country in Africa. Around 85% of its residents are ethnic Somalis, who have inhabited the northern part of the country. Ethnic minorities are concentrated in the southern regions; the official languages of are Arabic. Most people in the country are Muslim, with the majority being Sunni. In antiquity, Somalia was an important commercial centre, it is among the most probable locations of the fabled ancient Land of Punt.
During the Middle Ages, several powerful Somali empires dominated the regional trade, including the Ajuran Empire, the Adal Sultanate, the Warsangali Sultanate, the Sultanate of the Geledi. The toponym Somalia was coined by the Italian explorer Luigi Robecchi Bricchetti. In the late 19th century, the British and Italian empires established the colonies of British Somaliland and Italian Somaliland. In the interior, Mohammed Abdullah Hassan's Darwiish repelled the British four times, forcing a retreat to the coast, before succumbing in the Somaliland campaign. Italy acquired full control of the northeastern and southern parts of the area after waging the Campaign of the Sultanates against the ruling Majeerteen Sultanate and Sultanate of Hobyo. In 1960, the two regions united to form the independent Somali Republic under a civilian government; the Supreme Revolutionary Council seized power in 1969 and established the Somali Democratic Republic, which collapsed in 1991 as the Somali Civil War broke out.
During this period most regions returned to religious law. The early 2000s saw the creation of interim federal administrations; the Transitional National Government was established in 2000, followed by the formation of the Transitional Federal Government in 2004, which reestablished the military. In 2006, the TFG assumed control of most of the nation's southern conflict zones from the newly formed Islamic Courts Union; the ICU subsequently splintered into more radical groups such as Al-Shabaab, which battled the TFG and its AMISOM allies for control of the region. By mid-2012, the insurgents had lost most of the territory that they had seized, a search for more permanent democratic institutions began. A new provisional constitution was passed in August 2012; the same month, the Federal Government of Somalia was formed and a period of reconstruction began in Mogadishu. Somalia has maintained an informal economy based on livestock, remittances from Somalis working abroad, telecommunications, it is a member of the United Nations, the Arab League, African Union, Non-Aligned Movement and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.
Somalia has been inhabited since at least the Paleolithic. During the Stone Age, the Doian and Hargeisan cultures flourished here; the oldest evidence of burial customs in the Horn of Africa comes from cemeteries in Somalia dating back to the 4th millennium BCE. The stone implements from the Jalelo site in the north were characterized in 1909 as important artefacts demonstrating the archaeological universality during the Paleolithic between the East and the West. According to linguists, the first Afroasiatic-speaking populations arrived in the region during the ensuing Neolithic period from the family's proposed urheimat in the Nile Valley, or the Near East; the Laas Geel complex on the outskirts of Hargeisa in northwestern Somalia dates back 5,000 years, has rock art depicting both wild animals and decorated cows. Other cave paintings are found in the northern Dhambalin region, which feature one of the earliest known depictions of a hunter on horseback; the rock art is in the distinctive Ethiopian-Arabian style, dated to 1,000 to 3,000 BCE.
Additionally, between the towns of Las Khorey and El Ayo in northern Somalia lies Karinhegane, the site of numerous cave paintings of real and mythical animals. Each painting has an inscription below it, which collectively have been estimated to be around 2,500 years old. Ancient pyramidical structures, ruined cities and stone walls, such as the Wargaade Wall, are evidence of an old civilization that once thrived in the Somali peninsula; this civilization enjoyed a trading relationship with ancient Egypt and Mycenaean Greece since the second millennium BCE, supporting the hypothesis that Somalia or adjacent regions were the location of the ancient Land of Punt. The Puntites traded myrrh, gold, short-horned cattle and frankincense with the Egyptians, Babylonians, Indians and Romans through their commercial ports. An Egyptian expedition sent to Punt by the 18th dynasty Queen Hatshepsut is recorded on the temple reliefs at Deir el-Bahari, during the reign of the Puntite King Parahu and Queen Ati.
In 2015, isotopic analysis of ancient baboon mummies from Punt, brought to Egypt as gifts indicated that the specimens originated from an area encompassing eastern Somalia and the Eritrea-Ethiopia corridor. In the classical era, the Macrobians, who may have b
Islamic banking and finance
Islamic banking or Islamic finance or sharia-compliant finance is banking or financing activity that complies with sharia and its practical application through the development of Islamic economics. Some of the modes of Islamic banking/finance include Mudarabah, Musharaka and Ijara. Sharia prohibits usury, defined as interest paid on all loans of money. Investment in businesses that provide goods or services considered contrary to Islamic principles is haraam; these prohibitions have been applied in varying degrees in Muslim countries/communities to prevent un-Islamic practices. In the late 20th century, as part of the revival of Islamic identity, a number of Islamic banks formed to apply these principles to private or semi-private commercial institutions within the Muslim community, their number and size has grown, so that by 2009, there were over 300 banks and 250 mutual funds around the world complying with Islamic principles, around $2 trillion was sharia-compliant by 2014. Sharia-compliant financial institutions represented 1% of total world assets, concentrated in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries and Malaysia.
Although Islamic banking still makes up only a fraction of the banking assets of Muslims, since its inception it has been growing faster than banking assets as a whole, is projected to continue to do so. The industry has been lauded for returning to the path of "divine guidance" in rejecting the "political and economic dominance" of the West, noted as the "most visible mark" of Islamic revivalism, its most enthusiastic advocates promise "no inflation, no unemployment, no exploitation and no poverty" once it is implemented. However, it has been criticized for failing to develop profit and loss sharing or more ethical modes of investment promised by early promoters, instead selling banking products that "comply with the formal requirements of Islamic law", but use "ruses and subterfuges to conceal interest", entail "higher costs, bigger risks" than conventional banks. Although Islamic finance contains many prohibitions—such as on consumption of alcohol, uncertainty, etc. -- the belief that "all forms of interest are riba and hence prohibited" is the idea upon which it is based.
The word "riba" means “excess or addition”, has been translated as "interest", "usury", "excess", "increase" or "addition". According to Islamic economists Choudhury and Malik, the elimination of interest followed a "gradual process" in early Islam, "culminating" with a "fully fledged Islamic economic system" under Caliph Umar. Other sources, do not agree, state that the giving and taking of interest continued in Muslim society "at times through the use of legal ruses more or less openly," including during the Ottoman Empire. In the late 19th century Islamic Modernists reacted to the rise of European power and influence and its colonization of Muslim countries by reconsidering the prohibition on interest and whether interest rates and insurance were not among the "preconditions for productive investment" in a functioning modern economy. Syed Ahmad Khan, argued for a differentiation between sinful riba "usury", which they saw as restricted to charges on lending for consumption, legitimate non-riba "interest", for lending for commercial investment.
However, in the 20th century, Islamic revivalists/Islamists/activists worked to define all interest as riba, to enjoin Muslims to lend and borrow at "Islamic Banks" that avoided fixed rates. By the 21st century this Islamic Banking movement had created "institutions of interest-free financial enterprises across the world”; the movement started with activists and scholars such as Anwar Qureshi,Naeem Siddiqui, Abul A'la Maududi, Muhammad Hamidullah, in the late 1940 and early 1950s. They believed commercial banks were a "necessary evil," and proposed a banking system based on the concept of Mudarabah, where shared profit on investment would replace interest. Further works devoted to the subject of interest-free banking were authored by Muhammad Uzair, Abdullah al-Araby, Mohammad Najatuallah Siddiqui, al-Najjar and Muhammad Baqir al-Sadr; the involvement of institutions and various conferences and studies on Islamic banking were instrumental in applying the application of theory to practice for the first interest-free banks.
At the First International Conference on Islamic Economics, "several hundred Muslim intellectuals, Shari'ah scholars and economists unequivocally declared... that all forms of interest" were riba. By 2004, the strength of this belief was demonstrated in the world's second largest Muslim country—Pakistan—when a minority member of the Pakistani parliament questioned it
Foreign direct investment
A foreign direct investment is an investment in the form of a controlling ownership in a business in one country by an entity based in another country. It is thus distinguished from a foreign portfolio investment by a notion of direct control; the origin of the investment does not impact the definition, as an FDI: the investment may be made either "inorganically" by buying a company in the target country or "organically" by expanding the operations of an existing business in that country. Broadly, foreign direct investment includes "mergers and acquisitions, building new facilities, reinvesting profits earned from overseas operations, intra company loans". In a narrow sense, foreign direct investment refers just to building new facility, a lasting management interest in an enterprise operating in an economy other than that of the investor. FDI is the sum of equity capital, long-term capital, short-term capital as shown in the balance of payments. FDI involves participation in management, joint-venture, transfer of technology and expertise.
Stock of FDI is the net cumulative FDI for any given period. Direct investment excludes investment through purchase of shares. FDI, a subset of international factor movements, is characterized by controlling ownership of a business enterprise in one country by an entity based in another country. Foreign direct investment is distinguished from foreign portfolio investment, a passive investment in the securities of another country such as public stocks and bonds, by the element of "control". According to the Financial Times, "Standard definitions of control use the internationally agreed 10 percent threshold of voting shares, but this is a grey area as a smaller block of shares will give control in held companies. Moreover, control of technology, management crucial inputs can confer de facto control." According to Grazia Ietto-Gillies, prior to Stephen Hymer’s theory regarding direct investment in the 1960s, the reasons behind Foreign Direct Investment and Multinational Corporations were explained by neoclassical economics based on macro economic principles.
These theories were based on the classical theory of trade in which the motive behind trade was a result of the difference in the costs of production of goods between two countries, focusing on the low cost of production as a motive for a firm’s foreign activity. For example, Joe S. Bain only explained the internationalization challenge through three main principles: absolute cost advantages, product differentiation advantages and economies of scale. Furthermore, the neoclassical theories were created under the assumption of the existence of perfect competition. Intrigued by the motivations behind large foreign investments made by corporations from the United States of America, Hymer developed a framework that went beyond the existing theories, explaining why this phenomenon occurred, since he considered that the mentioned theories could not explain foreign investment and its motivations. Facing the challenges of his predecessors, Hymer focused his theory on filling the gaps regarding international investment.
The theory proposed by the author approaches international investment from a different and more firm-specific point of view. As opposed to traditional macroeconomics-based theories of investment, Hymer states that there is a difference between mere capital investment, otherwise known as portfolio investment, direct investment; the difference between the two, which will become the cornerstone of his whole theoretical framework, is the issue of control, meaning that with direct investment firms are able to obtain a greater level of control than with portfolio investment. Furthermore, Hymer proceeds to criticize the neoclassical theories, stating that the theory of capital movements cannot explain international production. Moreover, he clarifies that FDI is not a movement of funds from a home country to a host country, that it is concentrated on particular industries within many countries. In contrast, if interest rates were the main motive for international investment, FDI would include many industries within fewer countries.
Another observation made by Hymer went against what was maintained by the neoclassical theories: foreign direct investment is not limited to investment of excess profits abroad. In fact, foreign direct investment can be financed through loans obtained in the host country, payments in exchange for equity, other methods; the main determinants of FDI is side as well as growth prospectus of the economy of the country when FDI is made. Hymer proposed some more determinants of FDI due to criticisms, along with assuming market and imperfections; these are as follows: Firm-specific advantages: Once domestic investment was exhausted, a firm could exploit its advantages linked to market imperfections, which could provide the firm with market power and competitive advantage. Further studies attempted to explain how firms could monetize these advantages in the form of licenses. Removal of conflicts: conflict arises if a firm is operating in foreign market or looking to expand its operations within the same market.
He proposes that the solution for this hurdle arose in the form of collusion, sharing the market with rivals or attempting to acquire a direct control of production. However, it must be taken into account that a reduction in conflict through acquisition of control of operations will increase the market imperfections. Propensity to formulate an internationalization strategy to mitigate risk: According to his position, firms are characterized with 3 levels of decision making: the day to day supervision, management decision coordination and long term strategy planning and deci
Insurance is a means of protection from financial loss. It is a form of risk management used to hedge against the risk of a contingent or uncertain loss. An entity which provides insurance is known as an insurer, insurance company, insurance carrier or underwriter. A person or entity who buys insurance is known as a policyholder; the insurance transaction involves the insured assuming a guaranteed and known small loss in the form of payment to the insurer in exchange for the insurer's promise to compensate the insured in the event of a covered loss. The loss may or may not be financial, but it must be reducible to financial terms, involves something in which the insured has an insurable interest established by ownership, possession, or pre-existing relationship; the insured receives a contract, called the insurance policy, which details the conditions and circumstances under which the insurer will compensate the insured. The amount of money charged by the insurer to the Policyholder for the coverage set forth in the insurance policy is called the premium.
If the insured experiences a loss, covered by the insurance policy, the insured submits a claim to the insurer for processing by a claims adjuster. The insurer may hedge its own risk by taking out reinsurance, whereby another insurance company agrees to carry some of the risk if the primary insurer deems the risk too large for it to carry. Methods for transferring or distributing risk were practiced by Chinese and Babylonian traders as long ago as the 3rd and 2nd millennia BC, respectively. Chinese merchants travelling treacherous river rapids would redistribute their wares across many vessels to limit the loss due to any single vessel's capsizing; the Babylonians developed a system, recorded in the famous Code of Hammurabi, c. 1750 BC, practiced by early Mediterranean sailing merchants. If a merchant received a loan to fund his shipment, he would pay the lender an additional sum in exchange for the lender's guarantee to cancel the loan should the shipment be stolen, or lost at sea. Circa 800 BC, the inhabitants of Rhodes created the'general average'.
This allowed groups of merchants to pay to insure their goods being shipped together. The collected premiums would be used to reimburse any merchant whose goods were jettisoned during transport, whether due to storm or sinkage. Separate insurance contracts were invented in Genoa in the 14th century, as were insurance pools backed by pledges of landed estates; the first known insurance contract dates from Genoa in 1347, in the next century maritime insurance developed and premiums were intuitively varied with risks. These new insurance contracts allowed insurance to be separated from investment, a separation of roles that first proved useful in marine insurance. Insurance became far more sophisticated in Enlightenment era Europe, specialized varieties developed. Property insurance as we know it today can be traced to the Great Fire of London, which in 1666 devoured more than 13,000 houses; the devastating effects of the fire converted the development of insurance "from a matter of convenience into one of urgency, a change of opinion reflected in Sir Christopher Wren's inclusion of a site for'the Insurance Office' in his new plan for London in 1667."
A number of attempted fire insurance schemes came to nothing, but in 1681, economist Nicholas Barbon and eleven associates established the first fire insurance company, the "Insurance Office for Houses," at the back of the Royal Exchange to insure brick and frame homes. 5,000 homes were insured by his Insurance Office. At the same time, the first insurance schemes for the underwriting of business ventures became available. By the end of the seventeenth century, London's growing importance as a center for trade was increasing demand for marine insurance. In the late 1680s, Edward Lloyd opened a coffee house, which became the meeting place for parties in the shipping industry wishing to insure cargoes and ships, those willing to underwrite such ventures; these informal beginnings led to the establishment of the insurance market Lloyd's of London and several related shipping and insurance businesses. The first life insurance policies were taken out in the early 18th century; the first company to offer life insurance was the Amicable Society for a Perpetual Assurance Office, founded in London in 1706 by William Talbot and Sir Thomas Allen.
Edward Rowe Mores established the Society for Equitable Assurances on Lives and Survivorship in 1762. It was the world's first mutual insurer and it pioneered age based premiums based on mortality rate laying "the framework for scientific insurance practice and development" and "the basis of modern life assurance upon which all life assurance schemes were subsequently based."In the late 19th century "accident insurance" began to become available. The first company to offer accident insurance was the Railway Passengers Assurance Company, formed in 1848 in England to insure against the rising number of fatalities on the nascent railway system. By the late 19th century governments began to initiate national insurance programs against sickness and old age. Germany built on a tradition of welfare programs in Prussia and Saxony that began as early as in the 1840s. In the 1880s Chancellor Otto von Bismarck introduced old age pensions, accident insurance and medical care that formed the basis for Germany's welfare state.
In Britain more extensive legislation was introduced by the Liberal government in the 1911 National Insurance Act. This gave the British working classes the first contributory system of insurance against illness and unemployment; this system was expanded after the Second World War under the inf
Tonga the Kingdom of Tonga, is a Polynesian country and archipelago comprising 169 islands, of which 36 are inhabited. The total surface area is about 750 square kilometres scattered over 700,000 square kilometres of the southern Pacific Ocean; the sovereign state has a population of 100,651 people, of whom 70% reside on the main island of Tongatapu. Tonga stretches across 800 kilometres in a north-south line, it is surrounded by Fiji and Wallis and Futuna to the northwest, Samoa to the northeast, Niue to the east, Kermadec to the southwest, New Caledonia and Vanuatu to the farther west. It is about 1,800 kilometres from New Zealand's North Island. Tonga became known in the West as the "Friendly Islands" because of the congenial reception accorded to Captain James Cook on his first visit in 1773, he arrived at the time of the ʻinasi festival, the yearly donation of the First Fruits to the Tuʻi Tonga and so received an invitation to the festivities. According to the writer William Mariner, the chiefs wanted to kill Cook during the gathering but could not agree on a plan.
From 1900 to 1970, Tonga had British protected state status, with the United Kingdom looking after its foreign affairs under a Treaty of Friendship. The country never relinquished its sovereignty to any foreign power. In 2010, Tonga took a decisive path towards becoming a constitutional monarchy rather than a traditional absolute kingdom, after legislative reforms passed a course for the first partial representative elections. In many Polynesian languages, including Tongan, the word tonga comes from fakatonga which means "southwards", as the archipelago is the southernmost group of the islands of central Polynesia; the word tonga is cognate to the Hawaiian region of Kona, meaning leeward in the Hawaiian language. An Austronesian-speaking group linked to the archaeological construct known as the Lapita cultural complex reached and inhabited Tonga around 1500–1000 BC. Scholars have much debated the exact dates of the initial settlement of Tonga, but Thorium dating confirms that the first settlers came to the oldest town, Nukuleka, by 888 BC, ± 8 years.
Not much is known before European contact because of the lack of a writing system, but oral history has survived and been recorded after the arrival of the Europeans. By the 12th century and the Tongan paramount chief, the Tuʻi Tonga, had a reputation across the central Pacific—from Niue, Rotuma, Wallis & Futuna, New Caledonia to Tikopia—leading some historians to speak of a Tuʻi Tonga Empire. In the 15th century and again in the 17th, civil war erupted; the Tongan people first encountered Europeans in 1616 when the Dutch vessel Eendracht, captained by Willem Schouten, made a short visit to trade. Came other Dutch explorers, including Jacob Le Maire. Noteworthy European visitors included James Cook in 1773, 1774, 1777; the US Exploring Expedition visited in 1840. In 1845, the ambitious young warrior and orator Tāufaʻāhau united Tonga into a kingdom, he held the chiefly title of Tuʻi Kanokupolu, but had been baptised by Methodist missionaries with the name Siaosi in 1831. In 1875, with the help of missionary Shirley Waldemar Baker, he declared Tonga a constitutional monarchy.
Tonga became a protected state under a Treaty of Friendship with Britain on 18 May 1900, when European settlers and rival Tongan chiefs tried to oust the second king. The treaty posted no higher permanent representative on Tonga than a British Consul. Under the protection of Britain, Tonga maintained its sovereignty, remained the only Pacific nation to retain its monarchical government; the Tongan monarchy follows an uninterrupted succession of hereditary rulers from one family. The 1918 flu pandemic, brought to Tonga by a ship from New Zealand, killed 1,800 Tongans, reflecting a mortality rate of about eight per cent; the Treaty of Friendship and Tonga's protection status ended in 1970 under arrangements established by Queen Salote Tupou III prior to her death in 1965. Tonga joined the Commonwealth of Nations in 1970, became a member of the United Nations in September 1999. While exposed to colonial pressures, Tonga has always governed itself, which makes it unique in the Pacific; as part of cost-cutting measures across the British Foreign Service, the British Government closed the British High Commission in Nukuʻalofa in March 2006, transferring representation of British interests to the High Commissioner in Fiji.
The last resident British High Commissioner was Paul Nessling. Tonga is a constitutional monarchy. Reverence for the monarch replaces that held in earlier centuries for the sacred paramount chief, the Tuʻi Tonga. Criticism of the monarch is held to be contrary to Tongan etiquette. King Tupou VI, his family, powerful nobles and a growing non-royal elite caste live in much wealth, with the rest of the country living in relative poverty; the effects of this disparity are mitigated by education and lan