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The WTO and its rulebook play a vital role in the global economy, but the organisation is under threat. The problems confronting the WTO – US-China trade tensions, the unilateral raising of trade barriers, the fact that the WTO’s Appellate Body can no longer function – were formidable even before COVID-19.

5 reasons why the role of WTO Director-General matters

The Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Roberto Azevedo, announced on 14 May that he would step down a year earlier than planned

«All of the major global players, the United States, China and the European Union, got their initial response to the crisis partly wrong.»

COVID 19: Assessing the Global Political Fallout

By: EBR | Friday, June 5, 2020

The COVID 19 pandemic and the ensuing mega-recession may shape political debates and choices for a long time

There are many reasons to pursue a Great Reset, but the most urgent is COVID-19. Having already led to hundreds of thousands of deaths, the pandemic represents one of the worst public-health crises in recent history. And, with casualties still mounting in many parts of the world, it is far from over.

Now is the time for a ’great reset’

By: EBR | Friday, June 5, 2020

COVID-19 lockdowns may be gradually easing, but anxiety about the world’s social and economic prospects is only intensifying

EU budget chief Johannes Hahn has even had to go out of his way to insist that the €750bn recovery fund plan is not an act of altruism but an investment strategy, pure and simple. Nearly 175,000 people have died in Europe alone, yet the discourse’s real focus is the bottom line, not lives.

The Brief – Ad astra et altruism

By: EBR | Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Elon Musk’s success in blasting two astronauts into orbit provided a welcome – albeit brief – distraction from the grim situation plaguing most of the world. Humanity’s space exploits can tell us something about where society is going and, more importantly, failing

The SpaceX space capsule with NASA astronauts on board arrived safely at the ISS, a landmark mission that ended Russia’s monopoly on flights there. Astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken will remain on the ISS for almost three months in preparation for more missions from the US.

SpaceX’s brings back America’s status in space after 10 years ‘help’ by Russia

By: EBR | Tuesday, June 2, 2020

The space flight with the Crew Dragon from SpaceX, the first of a commercial company to the International Space Station, ISS, is a big success for the US

«No doubt that an agreement between secular Israeli Jews and Israeli Arabs about a shared Israelihood is a formidable challenge.»

The Case for a New Jewish-Arab Alliance in Israel

By: EBR | Tuesday, June 2, 2020

This path would augment the prospect of Israel to remain a progressive, Jewish and democratic state

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Trump’s new plan, outlined to reporters on Saturday, is to host an expanded G7 meeting including Russia, Australia, South Korea and India, dedicated to building an alliance against China. The plan is likely to be controversial because Russia has been banned from Western-led summits since Putin annexion of Crimea in 2014, and is not seen as a natural ally in the defense of human rights in Hong Kong.

Trump wants a new G7 platform with Russia, India, and Australian as an alliance against China

By: EBR | Monday, June 1, 2020

Donald Trump has been forced to cancel a planned face-to-face summit of G7 leaders in June and now wants to host an expanded meeting in September dedicated to countering China, to which Vladimir Putin would be invited

The recent cases in Ferguson and Cleveland are but the very public and latest painful manifestations of the country’s underlying problems with rules governing the legitimate monopoly on the use of force.

Ferguson/US: Police Systematically Out of Control

By: EBR | Friday, May 29, 2020

The far too liberal use of deadly force by police in a conservative country

The Hong Kong government’s continuous manipulation of laws to cripple elected persons and use administrative powers to prevent others from running for election caused further alienation.

Hong Kong and Beijing: A Tale of Two Cities

By: EBR | Thursday, May 28, 2020

The current protests show that Hong Kongers aren’t just interested in money, and mainland elites worry that Hong Kong won’t remain a separate territory where they can safely store their money

«The question is whether India can cope with becoming the new China. Before the country was paralysed by the corona virus, the economy, which largely revolves around informal labour, was not in good shape. About 60 percent of Indians work without any kind of security, and many of them were sick with unemployment overnight.»

If India wants to challenge China as a global manufacturing country, it will have to move quickly

By: EBR | Tuesday, May 26, 2020

The time is now, say experts, for India to undertake broad-based structural reforms and use these sweeping geopolitical shifts to modify its trading relationship with the world

Benjamin Ganz, leader of Blue and White, won the votes of people who believed him when he had promised that he would not sit in government with someone who had been indicted with such three serious charges. So he said. And so did Groucho Marx, who had said that, “Those are my principles and if you don’t like them, well, I have others.”

It’s In Israelis’ DNA to Battle the Coronavirus

By: EBR | Monday, May 25, 2020

If the COVID-19 crisis weren’t bad enough, then Israelis are about to suffer two more calamities

"When it comes to the primacy of the dollar, the main risk stems not from China but from the United States itself."

The Future of the Dollar

By: EBR | Monday, May 25, 2020

U.S. Financial Power Depends on Washington, Not Beijing

Last week the US Department of Commerce cracked down on Huawei’s access to components featuring domestic software and technology made outside China. Analysts believe that the new US regime makes it difficult for any foundry in the world to avoid the impact of this.

US attack on Huawei threatens US telecom operators and Taiwanese chip maker

By: N. Peter Kramer | Monday, May 25, 2020

US telecom associations warned that small operators in the country are paralysed by the law requiring them to replace Huawei and ZTE kit in their networks

When economic risks are mixed with other factors that are unfolding, a second set of effects begin to emerge. So much of our economic activity is digitalized, automated and integrated, and factors like the sustained shift in working patterns from lockdown restrictions creates new opportunities for cybercriminals, for example.

‘Building back better’ – here’s how we can navigate the risks we face after COVID-19

By: EBR | Thursday, May 21, 2020

As a perfect storm of health and economic crises leaves the world navigating uncertain times, a new report casts light on what lies ahead

For the first time this century, the numbers of people living in absolute poverty are rising. The World Food Programme estimates that another 130 million people could be brought to the brink of starvation, leading to a new combined total of 265 million people in that dire predicament.

More, not less, multilateralism is needed to fight the coronavirus pandemic

By: EBR | Thursday, May 21, 2020

"When written in Chinese, the word crisis is composed of two characters – one represents danger, and the other represents opportunity." John F. Kennedy

China is obviously a one-party state. Ultimate political authority rests with the Chinese Communist Party. Its Politburo Standing Committee, headed by President Xi Jinping, sets policy.

Two Sessions – One Outcome?

By: EBR | Thursday, May 21, 2020

For the first time since Mao passed away in 1976, China does not expect tomorrow to be better than today

The government’s majority and a high turnover of elites brought both opportunities and risks. It seemed possible to implement long-overdue reforms that had previously been blocked by oligarchic interests. Critics often overemphasized the new elites’ lack of experience: many had relevant backgrounds in business, civil society, or local politics.

The Uneven First Year of Zelenskiy’s Presidency

By: EBR | Wednesday, May 20, 2020

In his first twelve months as Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy has notched up modest successes, but a series of missteps has eroded domestic and international trust

«As the COVID 19 crisis continues to unfold in the months ahead, U.S. workers and communities will find themselves penalized by a corporate governance structure cunningly crafted to steadily transfer income from them to shareholders.»

US: A Country Rooted in Unfairness

By: EBR | Tuesday, May 19, 2020

The COVID 19 pandemic is highlighting U.S. shareholder capitalism’s gross inequities

For the next 80 years or so, the core challenge for people everywhere will be to build healthy societies within their own “walls.” Only when enough countries have succeeded in that mission is it realistic to expect that the fear of “the other” will dissipate and that walls will begin to crumble in any meaningful fashion.

Downhill from Peak Globalisation: When Will It End?

By: EBR | Monday, May 18, 2020

The world has encountered a series of shocks over the past 15 years. This should lead to more realistic expectations about the timetable for further globalization moves

Without strenuous and targeted attempts, we are again likely to see an increase in inequality, which was already “one of the most complex and vexing challenges in the global economy,” in the words of the IMF’s Managing Director.

The pandemic will leave the poor further disadvantaged - IMF

By: EBR | Monday, May 18, 2020

The COVID-19 crisis is now widely seen as the greatest economic calamity since the Great Depression

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EU Actually

Von der Leyen’s hunt for ‘leakers’ to the member-states

N. Peter KramerBy: N. Peter Kramer

Politico let know, that, according to EU officials with direct knowledge of the investigations, European Commission officials are hunting for leakers

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Europe

24 countries sign pledge to boost international rail routes

24 countries sign pledge to boost international rail routes

Twenty-four European countries agreed on Wednesday (3 June) to work together on international rail transport and make it “an attractive alternative” over distances where it is currently not competitive

Business

Three Teamwork Trends That May Not Survive This Crisis

Three Teamwork Trends That May Not Survive This Crisis

Many expert observers have made predictions about the “new normal” of work after the pandemic. Some are optimistic, envisioning a paradigm shift towards a more flexible, empowered future for workers through remote working

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