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The Economist - 3 декабря 2022

Скачать бесплатно журнал The Economist, 3 декабря 2022

Год выпуска: декабрь 2022

Автор: The Economist Newspaper and The Economist Group

Жанр: Экономика/Политика

Издательство: «The Economist Newspaper Ltd»

Формат: PDF (журнал на английском языке)

Качество: OCR

Количество страниц: 76


  • Caught between raging disease and unpopular and costly lockdowns, Xi Jinping has no good fix: leader, page 13, and briefing, page 19.
  • The largest wave of unrest in China since the upheaval of 1989 may not threaten Xi Jinping’s grip on power. But it will alarm him, page 49.
  • Students are at the heart of the protests, page 51, and Chaguan, page 52.
  • Jiang Zemin, China’s party leader from 1989 to 2022: obituary, page 78.

Cyber-defence lessons from Ukraine

  • The country has shown how to prevail against malware and other attacks: leader, page 15, and analysis, page 67.

Why World Cup goal margins matter

  • The group stage bodes well for Spain’s and England’s chances: Graphic detail, page 77.

Don’t count on the oil-price cap

  • The West’s proposed new sanction on Russian oil is no magic weapon: leader, page 14.
  • It could roil energy markets, page 61.

Breaking the taboo about sex problems

  • They can wreck people’s lives. Yet remedies are often simple: leader, page 16.
  • Talking about them is becoming easier, page 53.

The world this week Politics

  • China’s government was confronted with the boldest show of civil disobedience in decades. The unrest began after a deadly fire in Xinjiang. Many Chinese blamed covid-19 restrictions for making it harder for victims to escape a blazing apartment block. Protests against the controls erupted in several cities. Some protesters risked jail by calling for Xi Jinping and the Communist Party to relinquish power. Extra police curbed the unrest in most cities. As the coronavirus spread rapidly in China, officials said lockdowns should be “imposed and eased quickly”. Efforts to vaccinate old people, long neglected, were stepped up. Mr Xi remained silent throughout.
  • Jiang Zemin, the leader of China’s Communist Party from 1989 to 2002, died. Mr Jiang oversaw a wave of economic opening, but not much political reform. His colourful personality spiced up diplomatic events. In his later years he became something of a folk hero for younger Chinese, who made him the subject of viral internet memes.
  • A fresh wave of attacks left much of Kyiv without power and water again. Although Ukrainian engineers swiftly repaired much of the damage, rolling blackouts are still affecting most of the capital as energy companies struggle to ration supplies. A meeting of NATO foreign ministers pledged more help to fix infrastructure. Many more generators, and fuel to power them, will be needed.
  • Turkey’s foreign minister said that Finland and Sweden must do more to stifle Kurdish propaganda emanating from their territory if Turkey is to support their membership of nato. Hungary, the other holdout, has said it will ratify Finland’s and Sweden’s membership early next year.

Foul play?

  • The foreign minister of Belarus died suddenly. Vladimir Makei, 64, was rated by Westerners as one of the more approachable members of the Belarusian regime, though he backed the crushing of democratic opposition to it. He also brazenly denied that Belarus was an accomplice to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which was partly launched from Belarusian territory.
  • Protests persisted in Iran. The un Human Rights Council voted to set up an investigation. Its rapporteur criticised Iran’s “campaign” of sentencing protesters to death. Four Iranians were condemned to die, supposedly for spying for Israel. Another was reportedly shot dead. Like many dissidents, he was celebrating Iran’s elimination from the football World Cup.
  • A report said South Africa’s president, Cyril Ramaphosa, might have broken the law by not reporting cash kept in his game ranch, which came to light after unknown thieves stole it. Parliament will have to decide whether to impeach him. Mr Ramaphosa had been trying, often ineffectually, to clean up corruption. The procorruption wing of his party would love to oust him.
  • At least 14 people were killed when security forces ended a siege at a hotel in Mogadishu, Somalia’s capital, involving jihadists from al-Shabab, a rebel group.
  • Officials in the Central African Republic complained that a camp full of Russian mercenaries had been bombed. The Wagner Group, run by a pal of Vladimir Putin, has been helping the car’s government, which has a lot of precious minerals. The officials said the aircraft that bombed the camp flew back “to the north”, meaning to Chad, which has awful relations with the car.
  • The prime minister of the island state of Sao Tome and Principe, the second-smallest member of the African Union by population, said there had been a coup attempt against his government. He released a video message to “reassure” the people that it had failed.
  • Two members of the Oath Keepers, a far-right group, were found guilty of seditious conspiracy in relation to the storming of America’s Congress on January 6th 2021. They had helped organise the mob that tried to stop Joe Biden from being confirmed as president, after Donald Trump falsely claimed that his election was fraudulent.
  • Hakeem Jeffries was elected by Democrats in the House of Representatives to be their leader, following Nancy Pelosi’s decision to step down. He is the first black person to lead a party in Congress.
  • The American Senate passed a bill confirming the right of gay couples to marry. The bill, passed with support from some Republicans, would render moot any hypothetical future challenge to the Supreme Court ruling in 2015 that made same-sex marriage legal everywhere in the United States. It is expected to become law this month.
  • In Japan a court upheld a ban on gay marriage, but offered hope to same-sex couples by also finding that the lack of laws to protect their families violated their rights. Singapore’s parliament decriminalised gay sex, but tightened the law defining marriage as between a man and a woman.
  • Protesters from a Christian fishing village in India’s state of Kerala clashed with police as they tried to stop construction of a new port. The villagers say the port will ruin their livelihoods. Hindu nationalists blame a church for the protests and have marched in support of the project.
  • A suicide-bomber rammed a police vehicle escorting a polio-vaccination team in Pakistan, killing four people. Islamic militants have long targeted vaccination workers, falsely claiming that they are sterilising Muslims. Pakistan and Afghanistan are the only two countries where polio, which paralyses children, is still endemic.
  • Joe Biden started to lift American sanctions on Venezuela. Chevron, an American oil giant, was granted a limited licence to start pumping and exporting oil to the United States. In exchange Nicolas Maduro’s autocratic regime agreed to resume talks with the opposition. America has warned that it will restore sanctions if Mr Maduro reneges on the deal.
  • Thousands of Mexicans rallied in support of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the president. Many allegedly arrived on buses paid for with public money. Mr Lopez Obrador had called for the march in response to a recent big protest by Mexicans who say he is trying to undermine the electoral system.

It hasn’t gone away

  • The annual World aids Day was a reminder that, despite much progress, 650,000 people a year die because of hiv infections. The latest weapons, prophylactic drugs, are now being rolled out, but 1.5m people a year are still being infected.

The world this week Business

  • Annual inflation in the euro zone fell in November, to 10%. Energy prices also eased a little, as Europe’s mild autumn suppressed the demand for heating, dampening the wholesale market for naturalgas. Those prices have started to rise again, as colder weather settles in. The average inflation figure masked regional variations. Inflation in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania is above 21%. In Germany it is 11.3%, though that is also down on October. In Finland inflation jumped, to 9%.
  • The bigger-than-expected fall in inflation sparked speculation about the European Central Bank’s next move on interest rates. Before the latest data came out, Christine Lagarde, the ecb’s president, said that the bank “is not done” raising rates. It meets on December 15th.
  • In America Jerome Powell, chairman of the Federal Reserve, gave a hawkish speech on the fight against inflation, but also suggested that the central bank will moderate the pace of rate increases when it next meets, on December 14th. Stockmarkets soared.
  • JD.com is reportedly slashing the salaries of 2,000 executives as it pivots to a period of slower growth. The Chinese e-commerce giant wants to improve conditions for its lowest-paid workers, following rumblings from the government about tech companies not doing enough to tackle inequality.
  • Lady Luck at last smiled on the operators of Macau’s big casinos, when the Chinese territory’s government agreed to extend their licences to operate for ten years. Battered by covid restrictions and the Chinese government’s increasing antipathy towards gambling, the casinos, some of which are run by American firms, such as Sands, are betting that the new licences will provide stability for investors. Their share prices jumped after the announcement.

Flying green class

  • Rolls-Royce carried out the world’s first ground test of an aircraft engine that has been converted to run on green hydrogen created by wind and tidal power. Hydrogen-powered planes can help the aviation industry cut its emissions, although passengercarrying jets are still years
  • away from entering service. Airbus, which has been aiming to introduce a hydrogen plane by 2035, warned this week that a lack of green hydrogen and associated infrastructure could delay its project.
  • EasyJet published results, and said that the summer months had been a “record bounce back” from the covid era. The European airline reported that bookings for holidays over this winter were back to normal, and predicted that it will increase seat capacity from April to September next year.
  • The collapse of ftx continued to reverberate around the world of cryptocurrency. BlockFi, a platform offering a range of crypto services, filed for bankruptcy protection citing its “significant exposure” to ftx through reciprocal loans and credit agreements. Genesis, a cryptocurrency brokerage, was reportedly trying to avoid bankruptcy.
  • hsbc agreed to sell its business in Canada to Royal Bank of Canada, the country’s largest lender, for C$13.5bn ($10bn). It is Canada’s biggest-ever deal in banking. hsbc is under pressure from Ping An, a Chinese insurer and its largest shareholder, to focus entirely on its Asian business in order to boost its stock. It is also closing a quarter of its branches in Britain, its home country.
  • Almost 197m Americans shopped over the Thanksgiving weekend, according to the National Retail Federation, more than even pre-pandemic levels. More people shopped online than in store, although visits to bricks-and-mortar outlets grew by 17%, year on year, a sign that consumers are settling back into pre-covid behaviour. Retailers pray that the rest of the Christmas season will be as jolly, and that shoppers haven’t just brought forward their spending.

Vive les miserables

  • A French court has decided that a consultant who was sacked for not being “fun” and avoiding work events had been wrongfully dismissed. “Mr T”, as he is named in documents, was entitled to “freedom of expression” by not participating in social activities, said the court. Mr T claimed that he felt humiliated by his colleagues’ exploits, which included binge drinking and “mock sexual acts”. The ruling is good news for office workers dreading the start of the Christmas party season.
  • China’s manufacturing purchasing managers’ index fell again in November, to 48, suggesting a deeper contraction in factory activity (above 50 indicates growth). Factory output has been curtailed by lockdowns and associated protests. The workers’ revolt at the Foxconn plant in Zhengzhou, which assembles the iPhone and other devices, could well affect Apple’s revenues, and break a run of 14 successive quarters in which sales have grown, year on year.

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