Foreign Direct Investment
Spain and Morocco: trouble or potential?
The burden of controlling irregular immigration, terrorism and drug smuggling has fallen disproportionately on the European Union’s southern members, including Spain. Ensuring stability on both sides of the Strait of Gibraltar, one of the world’s key waterways, is particularly tricky. If the new government in Madrid can’t find ways to work more closely with Morocco, the problems both countries are facing could get worse.
ASEAN: A nexus of conflict and prosperity
For the first time since the Vietnam War, Southeast Asia has become a cockpit for great-power rivalries. China’s inexorable rise has split the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which had become a regional broker for peace and prosperity. The ASEAN countries have the demographics and infrastructure to leapfrog into the ranks of the advanced economies, but everything depends on whether China’s growing dominance can be accommodated peacefully.
Uzbekistan’s reforms: Opening a new era in Central Asia?
Uzbekistan’s new president, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, has embarked on a series of far-reaching reforms. While some domestic initiatives – such as strengthening the rule of law and liberalizing the market – will take more time to show results, a new, proactive foreign policy is already having positive effects. How far Tashkent will take these reforms is still in question, but a stronger Uzbekistan will mean a less influential Russia in the region.
China’s soft landing in the Balkans
In the next few years China will be opening an investment bridgehead in the Balkans. As other powers such as Russia and Turkey have increased their geopolitical presence in the region, China’s expansion will be even stronger – but different in kind because it will be a “soft,” mostly economic penetration. The push will be all the more powerful if the European Union neglects the region, as seems probable with its decision to delay the next round of accession until 2025.
Global trends: terror and transition in sub-Saharan Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa is poised for another year of fast economic growth in 2016. But countries of the region must contend with falling commodity prices, an upsurge in terrorism and a widening gulf between aging leaders and newly assertive urban voters. <i>This report is part of GIS’s “Global Trends” series, which aims...
Morocco gets its edge from soft power behind the throne
Morocco is one of the few countries to emerge from the Arab Spring with its international standing enhanced. Bolstered by the popular legitimacy of its monarch, King Mohammed VI, it has managed to avoid the disruptive political transitions seen in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. Its economic reforms have attracted significant foreign investment. Yet continuing high rates...
China adjusts its economic involvement in Africa following a slowdown at home
Over the past decade, China’s involvement in Africa – in the form of trade, investment, cheap government loans and aid – has helped accelerate economic growth across the continent. However, China’s economic slowdown will impact Sino-African relations at a critical moment for Africa and its structural transformation. The u...
Balkans: two decades of peace have not attracted FDI
A quarter of a century since the fall of Communism, the Western Balkans – Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia – remain among the most underdeveloped parts of Europe. The absence of foreign direct investment (FDI) has hobbled the transition of these six countries from central planning to a free market economy. This situation po...
Colombia makes positive economic and social progress
Colombia has a host of problems but the government of President Juan Manuel Santos is making real progress on several fronts. The economy is outperforming most of its Latin American neighbours and foreign direct investment is pouring in. Peace talks to end 50 years of violence from the guerilla group Farc continue but further reforms are needed to reduce inequality...