Pulse: Politics


2019 Outlook

Like previous “year ahead” reviews I have published on EconVue, this is not intended as a prediction of how events will necessarily unfold in real life. Instead, as always my intent is above all to consider the main risks to the stability to the international political and economic environment in various regions of the world that I am relatively familiar with.

Europe

2019: Trends, Risks and Hard Questions in Latin America

I am sharing with  you my new article examining trends and challenges facing Latin America and the Caribbean as we begin 2019.  The work focuses on the reinforcing effects of the fragmentation and other changes in the criminal groups across the region, the advance of the PRC, and deepening political crises in Guyana, Venezuela, Honduras, and Guatemala.  The article also highlights significant developments and challenges in Mexico and Colombia as countries of concern.

The Future of China’s Reform and Opening-Up

December 18, 2018, marks the 40th anniversary of the official beginning of China’s reform and opening-up, when the third Plenary Session of the 11th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) was held from December 18th to the 22nd, 1978.

Chinese Illegal Fishing Activities in Latin America

This article is about activities of the Chinese deepwater fishing fleet in Latin American waters, and their negative impact on the livelihood of some of the region's most vulnerable communities.  Although the media has highlighted a number of high-profile cases off the coasts of Argentina and Ecuador, in my research, I was struck by how widespread Chinese violations of the Exclusive Economic Zones of Latin American states, and other practices such as overfishing, trawl nets, etc appear to be, mirroring the damage that such activities have already caused in Asia and Africa.

Taiwan’s Struggle for Partners and Survival

From November 26 to December 2, 2018, I traveled to Taipei, Taiwan to speak at the prestigious private university, Tamkang. There I had the chance to interact with academics, officials, and students regarding Taiwan’s relationships in Latin America and the Caribbean and its associated struggle for diplomatic and existential survival.

The Future of Latin America and the Caribbean in the Context of the Rise of China

There are numerous analyses about China and its future, as well as about Chinese engagement with Latin America. This report examines, in detail, how the growth of China, with its power and role in the global economy, is likely to transform Latin America and the Caribbean through economic, political, and other forms of engagement with the region.

Left and Right Both Hate It -- a Good Sign for the Amazon HQ Deal

FMI’s commentary on the use of state & local incentives in the Amazon headquarters deals.

Amazon HQ Flawed But Still Good Deals for Winning States

When Socialist flavor-of-the-month Representative-elect Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez and conservative Fox host Sean Hannity both denounce a policy as an outrage, it must be truly outrageous. Or they must both be very confused. In the case of the incentives given Amazon for its new headquarters, it is the latter.

Chinese Money, Institutional Weaknesses, and Populism: A Recipe for Disaster?

The expansion of Chinese commercial activities in Latin America and the Caribbean raises questions.

The Latest Outlook on the Economy: Another Canary Swoons

For several months, I’ve written about growing signals of a possible recession perhaps 10 to 15 months from now. The yield curve has flattened dramatically, because global investors are nervous about our near-term prospects. Investment growth after depreciation has slowed, even with Trump’s costly tax cuts. Inflation has picked up some steam, and interest rates have risen accordingly. Most important, productivity has been virtually flat for three years, and the inflation-adjusted earnings of a typical household have fallen now for more than a year.

The Decennial Census has Big Political and Scientific Problems, and Not for the First Time

This article was originally published by Brookings Institute.

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