German exports slow down: Should Europe celebrate?
Those European leaders who like to complain about the ongoing trade surpluses of the German economy should not celebrate the recent slowdown in Germany’s exports and GDP growth. Higher labor costs and tensions in international trade may cause trouble for German exporters, but they are already investing in new production facilities in low-cost countries. If German exports slow down, their market share might be taken by German producers outside of Germany, while the productivity gap between Germany and the rest of Europe will widen.
VIDEO: Donald Trump’s legislative revolution | GIS: Global Trends Video Reports
The media’s obsession with election conspiracies, dossier who-done-its, and geopolitical expletives supposedly muttered in private is overshadowing recognition of the dramatic shift in regulatory policy during U.S. President Donald Trump’s first year.
VIDEO: 2018 Global Outlook: North Korea and the U.S.-China-Russia triangle | GIS: Global Trends Video Reports
While the risk of a U.S.-North Korean conflict is still considered low, brinkmanship is already causing considerable collateral damage to the triangular relationship between the three great powers – the U.S., China and Russia – that was a defining feature of the Cold War.
Surprising evolution in U.S. policy toward Ukraine
In no time, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko was elevated from Donald Trump’s doghouse to the status of an honored guest at the White House. The U.S. president has discovered reasons to demonstrate to his NATO allies, and the world, his tough stand on Russia. As East-West tension mounts, the conflict over Donbas, a portion of eastern Ukraine captured by Moscow-backed secessionists, may quickly degenerate into a U.S.-Russia proxy war.
Thailand slides toward a geopolitical realignment
Thailand, a country notorious for military coups but also a longtime security partner of the United States, has been slowly but inevitably aligning itself with China. The process is driven by political and economic considerations. Washington, obliged by the U.S. Congress to curb military assistance to Bangkok, has limited options to stop it.
Opinion: ‘Values’-driven policies, Europe’s road to isolation
Much of the instability and risk in the global environment can be traced to Western nations’ tendency to judge their rivals, but also allies and partners, through the prism of so-called Western values. The United States is powerful, self-sustained and geographically isolated enough to get away with it for a while, but European nations face grave danger if they continue to try to substitute pragmatic give-and-take policies with arrogance and moralistic lectures.
When emotions and perceptions outweigh facts
Emotionally charged pseudo-problems and theatrical political “summits” tend to distract the public from important issues. As a result, many of the world’s challenges become worse while leaders leave them unattended
The U.S. and China’s ‘free trade’ agendas
The United States and China are not true champions of free trade. Beijing pushes exports but effectively curbs imports through a maze of administrative obstacles. Washington traditionally concentrates on job protection and creation; its trade policies reflect these priorities.