Elections, coups, international relations, social movements, emerging states and influencers. Here find forecasts and potential scenarios for political trends from Geopolitical Intelligence Services (GIS) global experts.
Will Duterte end the Philippines-U.S. alliance?
President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines has made a splash for many reasons, one of the most important being his suggestions that Manila will work toward a new strategic alignment. While shunning the United States, he has called for new alliances with Russia and China. How likely is this shift to take place in the all-important South China Sea region?
Beijing’s maritime militias add to growing instability in the China Seas
Territorial waters disputes in East Asia have led to an arms race in the region. Military expenditure by East and Southeast Asian nations has risen by almost 90 percent between 2005 and 2015. A striking feature of the evolving geopolitical game is the increasing use of civilian maritime militias; at this point, China is positioned to win this lesser-arms race.
What is India’s growth rate?
India's growth rate has shot up over the past two years, after the country's statistical office changed its methodology. Prime Minister Narendra Modi's opponents argue that the figures are too good to be true. The reality is a bit more complicated, but there is no question that flaws in the statistics could be giving policymakers the wrong signals.
Italy’s referendum and the specter of instability
On December 4, Italians will go to the polls in a referendum on amending their constitution. Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has said he will resign if the changes are rejected. A win for the opposition could be seen as a populist turn for this highly indebted country, bringing instability domestically and uncertainty about the fate of the eurozone.
The Minsk process and Syria
The breakdown of yet another truce in Syria has sent relations between Russia and the United States to new lows. The mosaic of opposing forces and conflicting agendas is so complex that without a strong element of trust between Russia and the U.S., there cannot be a sustainable truce, let alone a realistic path to peace. This path leads through Donbas, in eastern Ukraine.
Buhari faces multiple crises in Nigeria
Nigeria is in crisis. Its recession is biting hard, while new separatist groups continue to spring up in the Niger Delta and sabotage oil infrastructure. So far, President Muhammadu Buhari's attempts to address these problems have only made them worse. What will happen if Africa's largest country continues on its downward spiral?
The European Union’s stillborn army
The plan for a European Union army appears to be an idea doomed to fail. Its failure, however, could pave the way for closer European defense cooperation centered on Germany. More likely, the push for an integrated European army will lead, somewhat paradoxically, to a renationalization of defense. Any such effort will have to rely heavily on NATO, and therefore on the alliance's strongest European military, Great Britain.
QE has failed. What comes next?
Eurozone economies have been subjected to expansionary monetary policy for almost five years, and the easy-money approach has failed to jump-start demand and ignite growth. As central bankers begin to face this reality, they may have to choose between shoring up government indebtedness and letting banks go bust, or giving bankers a chance to operate and letting governments default. Which will they choose?
The Balkans’ future: unions vs. multiethnic states
The redrawing of national borders and creation of multiethnic states ended the bloody ethnic wars of the late 20th century in the Western Balkans. But two decades later, this model is under strain. One way to extend its life could be through regional unions that reconnect the dispersed Serbian and Albanian nations.
Belarus on the brink
The signs are accumulating that President Alexander Lukashenko's days as the ruler of Belarus are numbered. His present pro-Western tilt is a desperate attempt to rescue an economy in free fall. Since the opposition is too weak to bring him down, the main question is whether Mr. Lukashenko will be done in by Russia – or by his own associates.