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August 28, 2019updated 27 Aug 2019 2:16pm

Japan removes South Korea from trade whitelist / Amazon drone delivery petition reaches deadline / Research England announces tech investment

By Luke Christou


Good morning, here’s your Wednesday morning briefing to set you up for the day ahead. Look out for these three things happening around the world today.

Japan removes South Korea from trade whitelist

Japan’s decision to remove South Korea from its list of favoured economic partners will come into effect today, forcing Japanese companies to go to extra lengths in order to export more than 800 “strategic materials” to South Korea.

Limited access to these materials, which include circuits, computers, robotics and telecommunications equipment, could have costly consequences for South Korea’s technology industry, with severe export delays expected.

This is the latest move in a tit-for-tat trade war between the two nations, and follows South Korea’s decision to end an intelligence sharing agreement with Japan a few days ago.

Amazon drone delivery petition reaches deadline

Today marks the deadline to respond to a petition submitted by online retail giant Amazon to the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) asking for permission to conduct commercial deliveries using its unmanned aircraft systems and drones.

The proposed Amazon Prime Air service hopes to deliver packages to customers within 30 minutes of placing their orders, and various tests have already taken place in the US, Europe and Israel. However, before Amazon can officially launch the service, it first needs regulatory approval in order to ensure it complies with aviation safety laws. 

If approved, Amazon will gain the upper-hand in drone delivery space over competitors such as DHL and UPS.

Research England announces tech research investment

Funding body Research England will today announce £3.6m in investment for research into energy storage and recycling, ageing and wellness and digital technologies and manufacturing, which is open to universities around the world.

Among the projects that will be funded by the investment fund are a study into how driverless cars will impact vulnerable road users, which is being carried out by students from Queensland University of Technology and Tongji University. Funds will also be given to a team of researchers from John Moores University and the University of Western Australia, which hopes to develop detection tools for cardiovascular disease. 

Eight projects will receive investment today, becoming the first to backed by Research England’s International Investment Initiative, which was launched last year to improve the UK’s position in the science and innovation fields.

Tuesday’s Highlights


Bitcoin price bounce shows $10,000 is cryptocurrency’s new bottom

Fraudulent domains trigger record number of legal disputes

Human night vision ahead as scientists harness nanotechnology