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AssessmentsMar 13, 2020 | 14:39 GMT
A man wearing a face mask walks in Pretoria square in Palermo, Italy, on March 11, 2020.
Europe's Tourism Industry Confronts an Unwelcome Visitor in COVID-19
Tourism is one of the sectors of the European economy that will be most affected by the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in the Continent. The importance of tourism for Europe cannot be overstated: It represents around 4 percent of the European Union's GDP and accounts for more than 5 percent of the total workforce. Tourism is particularly important in Southern Europe because it represents around 21 percent of GDP in Greece, 16 percent in Spain, 13 percent in Italy and almost 10 percent in France. It is also a significant source of employment. The vast majority of companies in Europe's tourism sector are small and medium-sized businesses, which are particularly vulnerable to economic crises. This means that Europe in general, and Southern Europe in particular, stands to lose a lot if the ongoing coronavirus outbreak extends into the spring when tourism activity starts to pick up. A contraction in the tourism sector
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AssessmentsMar 13, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
This photo shows a rows of seats on a passenger aircraft.
As Coronavirus Takes Flight, the Airline Industry Takes Cover
The coronavirus pandemic is ravaging the airline industry, with the most highly impacted countries of China, South Korea, Italy and Iran accounting for over a quarter of global passenger revenue alone. As panicked consumers continue to cancel or suspend their travel plans for fear of getting sick, and as more governments pursue containment measures and travel bans, an increasing number of airlines will be forced to either consolidate or go out of business. In China, this will likely lead to a market that's even more dominated by the state-backed carriers. Bigger airlines in Europe, meanwhile, will merge as revenue losses deal the final blow to their smaller competitors. But while so much is still unknown about how the outbreak will unfold in the weeks ahead, what remains certain is that the airline industry is headed for even more unexpected turbulence.
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GuidanceMar 2, 2020 | 21:47 GMT
South Korean soldiers in protective suits spray disinfectant on March 2, 2020, in Daegu, South Korea.
In South Korea, COVID-19 Burdens an Already Strained Economy
South Korea's growing number of domestic COVID-19 cases puts the country's already beleaguered economy under further strain, risking the ruling progressive camp's position in upcoming legislative elections that could render President Moon Jae In a lame duck. This worsens a difficult situation given South Korea's deep links to the Chinese economy, also hit by COVID-19.
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AssessmentsFeb 20, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
This photo shows workers at Dongfeng Motor's joint venture with Honda in Wuhan, China.
China's Virus Outbreak Has Dented Its Automakers' Bottom Lines
China’s deadly coronavirus outbreak has left few of its economic sectors unscathed, but the effects of shutdowns on its auto manufacturing operations have been -- and will continue to remain -- especially acute. Hubei province, the epicenter of the outbreak, has asked companies not to restart shuttered operations until at least Feb. 21. Production for a number of auto companies outside of Hubei had already been delayed past the Lunar New Year holiday until Feb. 10, and in some cases, production still remains offline. Nevertheless, even once the outbreak subsides, Chinese consumer demand for automobiles will take a substantial hit this year, with estimates showing that demand could fall by at least 5 percent because of the economic slowdown associated with the coronavirus outbreak.
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AssessmentsOct 21, 2019 | 09:30 GMT
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, left, and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence hold a news conference at the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, Turkey, on Oct. 17, 2019.
Turkey Prepares to Hit Back at U.S. Sanctions
The White House is eager to lift sanctions against Turkey, but that doesn't mean the U.S. Congress is keen on ceasing its pressure on Ankara over its offensive against the Syrian Democratic Forces anytime soon. Indeed, some members of Congress have described the Oct. 17 U.S.-Turkish cease-fire deal as a "capitulation" to Ankara, raising the prospect of continued American sanctions pressure against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government over its incursion. That, unsurprisingly, will seriously impact Turkey, raising the prospect that the country will retaliate against the United States and its interests in Turkey -- even if it will seek to walk a fine line between exacting some retribution against the United States and not retaliating so much that it results in even greater economic pain for Ankara. Whatever the case, Turkey's likely response will have a seriously detrimental effect on American-linked businesses and individuals in Turkey in the short
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AssessmentsOct 4, 2019 | 09:00 GMT
A South Korea freighter anchors at Qingdao, China.
South Korea's Economic Doldrums Have Taken the Wind Out of Moon's Sails
South Korea's difficult economic environment won't just make it harder for President Moon Jae In to enact his political agenda; in the next few months, it will threaten the continuity of his government. As with the rest of the Asia-Pacific, South Korea's economy is contending with slackening global demand, the volatile U.S.-China trade war and a cooling Chinese economy. The legislative elections that risk turning Moon into a lame duck take place in April 2020, and until then, he will have to balance carefully between delivering on promises to his supporters and buoying economic growth. This means he will have to rely more on the family-run conglomerates known as chaebols that dominate the South Korean economy to both support growth and build resistance to global trade disruptions. He will also take a more defiant stance against Japan amid their trade skirmish -- a popular stance among his base within the South
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Contributor PerspectivesSep 3, 2019 | 10:00 GMT
Workers carry water collected from Puzhal lake on June 20, 2019. Puzhal is one of four main reservoirs that supply the southern Indian city of Chennai with water; all are running dry.
India's Water-Stressed Future Is Now
Despite severe droughts, a shifting monsoon pattern, rapid urbanization, increasing demand for water and depletion of groundwater supplies, Indians continue to think they will have enough water to see them through the coming year, especially when the monsoons fill the lakes and water bodies. But there is enough data to raise alarms: More than 600 million Indians face a high to extreme water stress situation, according to a 2018 report by NITI Aayog, the government's policymaking and research body. Twenty-one Indian cities are expected to run out of groundwater supplies by next year, affecting more than 100 million people. The demand for water in India is expected to double over the next decade, resulting in severe scarcity for hundreds of millions of people. The country has experienced snapshots of this future over the past few years.
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SITUATION REPORTAug 30, 2019 | 18:40 GMT
China, U.S., Ukraine: Beijing Lambastes Bolton Over Criticism of Chinese-Ukrainian Defense Cooperation
The Chinese Embassy in Kyiv excoriated U.S. national security adviser John Bolton on Aug. 29 after he criticized Chinese intentions to purchase a share in Motor Sich, a Ukrainian helicopter and aircraft engine producer, UNIAN has reported.
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AssessmentsApr 8, 2019 | 09:00 GMT
The skyline of the Inner Mongolian city of Baotou is blackened by pollution from factories processing rare earth elements, which are essential for the production of mobile phones and computers.
The Geopolitics of Rare Earth Elements
Tucked into the sixth row of the periodic table, often represented by a single square expanded like a footnote at the bottom of the table, are the 15 lanthanides. When combined with yttrium and scandium, these materials are better known as the rare earth elements. Though they are used in very small amounts, their significance to the U.S. defense sector and to emerging and potentially disruptive technologies, combined with China's control over the majority of the market, has given the rare earth elements outsized geopolitical relevance.
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On SecurityMar 12, 2019 | 09:00 GMT
Algerian protesters demonstrate in the capital Algiers against ailing President Abdel Aziz Bouteflika's bid for a fifth term on March 8, 2019.
The Jihadist Peril Lurking in Algeria's Protests
No stranger to civil conflict, Algeria is once again experiencing significant political unrest. Protests in the country are gathering steam, indicating deep and widespread discontent with the power structure that has helped Algerian President Abdel Aziz Bouteflika remain in power even though the octogenarian suffered a debilitating stroke in 2013. The trigger for the most recent protests that erupted on Feb. 22 was the announcement that Bouteflika -- who is wheelchair-bound and unable to speak -- would stand for a fifth term in presidential elections on April 18. On March 11, however, he announced that he was withdrawing from the election, which authorities will delay until a national conference sets a date for a new election. In climbing down, Bouteflika is clearly hoping to defuse the current protests. But until the particulars are known, it is difficult to determine if he will succeed. The protests are not only focused on
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AssessmentsFeb 25, 2019 | 10:30 GMT
A Chinese worker checks wheels on Jan. 28, 2019, at a factory in Lianyungang, Jiangsu province.
China's Economic Pain Will Power Southeast Asia's Gains
As the global trade and investment landscape continues to evolve, Southeast Asia is gaining momentum as a top destination for investors seeking lower-wage manufacturing labor, high returns on their capital and infrastructural investments, and opportunities to profit from the region's sizable and fast-growing domestic markets. U.S.-China trade frictions are set to increase the manufacturing investments into the region that already are underway. The surge of investment into the region will be shared unevenly and felt disproportionately. But in the short term, Southeast Asia's emerging economies must equally contend with supply chain disruptions caused by the U.S.-China trade war, an extended slowdown in the Chinese economy, weak global demand for China's manufactured goods and their individual internal structural issues.
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AssessmentsOct 23, 2018 | 09:00 GMT
Employees assemble parts and make final inspections of Honda Activa scooters in Narasapura, on the outskirts of Bangalore, India.
Can India's Auto Industry Become the Bedrock the Country Needs?
U.S. President Donald Trump's threat of drastically raising tariffs on cars imported to the United States has unnerved the global automotive industry. Yet India appears unfazed. Washington and New Delhi have certainly sharpened their arrows as they jostle over disagreements on trade. Trump, who has called India the "tariff king," wants to chip away at the $23 billion bilateral trade deficit by gaining greater access to various sectors of the Indian market, including dairy and medical devices. And New Delhi has threatened to impose $241 million in retaliatory tariffs against Washington for refusing to grant waivers on its steel and aluminum shipments destined for the American market. But India's largely domestically focused automotive sector will fly beneath the radar of Trump's auto protectionism and continue to focus on serving a vast internal market of nearly 1.3 billion consumers.
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On GeopoliticsOct 18, 2018 | 10:00 GMT
A U.S. Air Force MQ-1B Predator unmanned aerial vehicle returns from a mission to an air base in the Persian Gulf region.
How the U.S.-China Power Competition Is Shaping the Future of AI Ethics
Controversial new technologies such as automation and artificial intelligence are quickly becoming ubiquitous, prompting ethical questions about their uses in both the private and state spheres. A broader shift on the global stage will drive the regulations and societal standards that will, in turn, influence technological adoption. As countries and corporations race to achieve technological dominance, they will engage in a tug of war between different sets of values while striving to establish ethical standards. Western values have long been dominant in setting these standards, as the United States has traditionally been the most influential innovative global force. But China, which has successfully prioritized economic growth and technological development over the past several decades, is likely to play a bigger role in the future when it comes to tech ethics.
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AssessmentsOct 8, 2018 | 09:00 GMT
A worker assembles a vehicle in a Hyundai plant in China's Hebei province. South Korean automakers have increased their manufacturing capacity in China to  A significant proportion of South Korea's auto manufacturing capacity in China to 2.1 million vehicles annually.
U.S. Auto Tariffs Would Deliver a Particularly Painful Sting to South Korea
Despite bending to U.S. pressure and agreeing both to revise the countries' free trade agreement and to accept export quotas on steel and aluminum, South Korea could still face tariffs on its vehicle exports to the United States. The government in Seoul is seeking ways to avoid the damage that tariffs could inflict on its auto manufacturing sector. But as U.S. President Donald Trump concentrates on strengthening U.S. manufacturing and rebalancing its trade relationships, the $22.6 billion trade deficit in goods between the two countries looms large. Although that deficit represents only a third of that between Japan and the United States and a small fraction of its $375 billion deficit with China, the South Korean trade imbalance has come under particular fire because of the role of automotive exports, which account for about 94 percent of that deficit.
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