looking beyond borders

foreign policy and global economy

Climate Change Could Force Over 140 Million To Migrate Within Countries By 2050: World Bank

The worsening impacts of climate change in three densely populated regions of the world could see over 140 million people move within their countries’ borders by 2050, creating a looming human crisis and threatening the development process, a new World Bank Group report finds.

Read Here – The World Bank Group



Fresh Prince

At only 32, MBS is already the most powerful figure in contemporary Saudi history, having sidelined other members of the ruling family with the full support of his father, King Salman. His concentrated authority and evident will to shake up the system make it possible for him to do great things. But he has also removed the restraints that have made Saudi foreign and domestic policy cautious, conservative, and ultimately successful amid the crises of the modern Middle East.

Read Here – Foreign Affairs

Pros and Cons Of Trump’s Random Foreign Policy

The key feature of a non-principled, fast-alternating foreign policy is that no one knows exactly what you are going to do next. That makes it hard for your enemies to plot against you. Russian President Vladimir Putin has used a version of this strategy to great effect. Almost no one anticipated the invasion of Ukraine. Even fewer thought that Putin would seek to make Russia into a Middle Eastern player again by intervening extensively in the Syrian civil war.

Read Here – Bloomberg View

China’s Xi Jinping And Russia’s Vladimir Putin Are Putting Strongman Politics Back On The Map

Strongman politics is back. And for anyone who thought otherwise, a quick peruse of this weekend’s headlines should help set them straight. In Beijing, Chinese President Xi Jinping received a thunderous ovation at the Great Hall of the People as he was sworn in for a second term, just minutes after receiving a unanimous mandate to do so and less than a week after lawmakers voted to revise the constitution and remove the two-term limit. In Moscow, Vladimir Putin became Russian president for the fourth time.

Read Here – South China Morning Post

The US Legacy In Iraq: Violence, Sectarianism – And Elections

After 15 years of violence, insecurity and sectarianism following the US invasion of Iraq, finding cause for optimism can be a fool’s errand for Iraqi leaders. This week marks the 15-year anniversary of the start of the US invasion of Iraq, ostensibly to free Iraqis from tyranny and oppression. What came next is well known: With the toppling of dictator Saddam Hussein, the US unleashed a storm of killing and division that persists to this day.

Read Here – Al Jazeera

Chairman Xi, Chinese Idol

It’s worth noting that the presidency in China is largely ceremonial. Real power resides in leadership of the Communist Party and the Central Military Commission. These are separate positions that Xi already holds and that have no term limits. So, in theory, the change in the constitution wasn’t necessary for Xi to exercise power indefinitely; as head of the Party and military, he already has it.

Read Here – The New York Review of Books

How Long Will the World’s Most Powerful Leaders Last?

The international pecking order is usually defined by economic and military might. That puts the U.S. at the top of the pile, with China gaining fast in second place. But when it comes to tackling long-term global challenges such as climate change, poverty or peacemaking, it’s also vital to identify which leaders are likely to stick around.

Read Here – Bloomberg

Don’t Push Us, China Says To Trump’s Demand For US$100 Billion Cut In The Sino-US Trade Gap

Beijing underscored its determination to protect its interests after Washington demanded a US$100 billion cut in China’s trade surplus with the United States.  Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said that the two countries should resolve their disputes through talks, since a trade war would not benefit either country. China would protect its legitimate rights if “something happens we don’t want to see”, he said.

Read Here – South China Morning Post

China Launches Mega Aid Agency In Big Shift From Recipient To Donor

China is laying the groundwork for a new aid agency to oversee its massive – and opaque – foreign aid programmes as Beijing closes in on Washington as the world’s biggest donor. The new agency, the International Development Cooperation Agency, will answer to China’s highest executive body, the State Council, and consolidate roles that had been between divided between the ministries of commerce and foreign affairs.

Read Here – South China Morning Post

India Sounds Alarm On Chinese Infra Projects In Neighbourhood

In a candid assessment, foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale said that China was “making headway” in infrastructure projects in South Asia and its “far greater” capacity to take up these undertakings are a “constant concern” for India. Gokhale’s remarks were made to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on External Affairs at a hearing on February 16. These were reproduced in the latest report of the standing committee on the Ministry of External Affairs’ budget, which was tabled last week.

Read Here – The Wire

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