Год выпуска: January 2024
Автор: The Economist Newspaper and The Economist Group
Издательство: «The Economist Newspaper Ltd»
Формат: PDF (журнал на английском языке)
Количество страниц: 88
CHINA’S EV ONSLAUGHT
- An influx of Chinese cars is coming to the West. It should welcome them: leader, page 7.
- Western firms are quaking as China's electric-car industry speeds up: briefing, page 14.
- Xi Jinping risks setting off another trade war, page 60.
Europe's Silicon Valley
- ASML, a mighty Dutch semiconductor firm, is at the heart of a critical supply chain, page 53.
The new contest for sea power
- Naval might is back at the heart of competition and conflict, threatening free trade and global security: leader, paged, and analysis, page 49.
What science says about old leaders
- Heart attacks, strokes and mental decline—can Joe Biden and Donald Trump beat the odds? Page 66.
A special reporton philanthropy
- Some of the super-rich are experimenting with new approaches. They are hoping to get money to the needy faster, Avantika Chilkoti reports, after page 40, and leader, page 70.
The world this week Politics
- In a further effort to stop Israel’s war in Gaza from escalating, Antony Blinken, America’s secretary of state, made his fourth visit to the Middle East since the fighting began in October. Tensions on Israel’s border with Lebanon have been rising since the assassination of a Hamas leader in Beirut and a strike in southern Lebanon, believed to have been carried out by Israel, which killed a Hizbullah commander. Mr Blinken called on regional powers which have influence over Hizbullah (namely Iran) to "keep things in check".
- Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Britain said that his country was still interested in normalising relations with Israel after the war in Gaza, but that progress must lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state.
- Hearings began at the UN international Court of Justice, where South Africa has brought a case accusing Israel of committing genocide in Gaza. Mr Blinken said the charge was "meritless".
- The Houthis, an Iranian-backed ebel group in Yemen, launched their largest attack yet on ships in the Red Sea. American and British naval forces shot down 21 drones and missiles launched by the group in a single night.
- A $2obn mining project was set to begin development in Guinea, a west African country of 13m people with a gdp of just $i6bn. It will involve building an iron-ore mine, railway and port.
- America is negotiating with several coastal west African countries to establish bases for surveillance drones to monitor jihadist activity. In 2023 it paused the flight of drones from its existing base in Niger after a coup there.
- Ethiopia held talks on military co-operation with Somaliland, just a week after the breakaway region of Somalia announced a deal to lease a stretch of coast to landlocked Ethiopia for a port and naval base. Somalia has criticised the deal as an infringement on its sovereignty.
A state of emergency
- Ecuador’s new president, Daniel Noboa, said the country faced an "internal armed conflict" after masked gunmen stormed a television studio in the city of Guayaquil during a live news broadcast. This came as violence swept the country following the disappearance of a notorious gang leader from a prison in Guayaquil, which also triggered rioting in prisons across Ecuador. Mr Noboa ordered the armed forces to "neutralise" Ecuador’s drug-trafficking gangs.
- A panel of three judges on a federal appeals court in Washington heard arguments over whether Donald Trump is immune from prosecution for allegedly trying to overturn the election in 2020. Earlier, the Supreme Court said it would rule on whether MrTrump should appear on the Republican primary ballot in Colorado following the state court's decision to boot him off. But the Supreme Court won't hear the case until February 8th, after the start of the primary season. Colorado holds its primary on March 5th.
- It emerged that Lloyd Austin, America's defence secretary, had surgery to treat prostate cancer in December and had failed to notify Joe Biden or his staff. The revelation came after news that Mr Austin had been readmitted to hospital on January ist and had again not informed the White House about his condition.
- Taiwan's Office of Trade Negotiations called on China to "stop using economic coercion to try to interfere" with the country’s general election on January 13th. This was after China threatened to end concessions that ease trade with Taiwan. The rhetoric has intensified between the two sides ahead of the poll. China accused Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party of engaging in "dirty tricks".
- South Korea’s parliament passed a bill that bans the farming and saleof dog meat. Anyone slaughtering a dog for food could face prison and a hefty fine, though there are no penalties for consumers who eat the meat. Once favoured as a cheap source of protein, dog meat has gone out of fashion in South Korea and other Asian countries as more people keep dogs as pets.
- Sheikh Hasina secured another term as prime minister of Bangladesh when her Awami League won a general election that was boycotted by other parties. Thousands of members of the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party were arrested in the weeks leading up to the poll. The official turnout was 42%; the opposition said it was much lower.
- Emmanuel Macron appointed Gabriel Attal as the new prime minister of France. Elisabeth Borne resigned from the job following the debacle surrounding an immigration bill that passed only after concessions were made to the far-right National Rally. The popular Mr Attal is just 34 and gay, and comes from the class of MPs elected in 2017 when Mr Macron became president.
- Charles Michel seemed set to step down in June as president of the European Council, after he announced that he would stand in his native Belgium as a candidate for the European Parliament. Mr Michel has led the council, which sets the agenda for European Union summits, since 2019. Mario Draghi, a former Italian prime minister, is being tipped to replace him.
- German farmers drove their tractors into Berlin to protest against government cuts to subsidies on diesel fuel. The march of the tractors was replicated throughout Germany causing traffic snarl-ups. Adding to the pressure on the government, data confirmed that asylum applications had surged by 51% in 2023, to nearly 352,000. The government has been toughening its position on migration as it loses ground to the far right in opinion polls.
- Around 1,000 towns and villages were left without power in Ukraine, as temperatures plummeted to -15°C (5°F). The freezing weather damaged distribution networks and equipment in a power network system that has not fully recovered from Russian attacks last winter. Lengthy power blackouts are also afflicting Russia. Residents near Moscow saw their heat and lighting go out as temperatures fell to -20°C.
- A long-running scandal in Britain involving erroneous accounting at post offices came to the political fore. Hundreds of "sub-postmasters", self-employed people who operate small postal offices, have been wrongly convicted of false accounting because of faulty software provided to them by the Post Office. A television drama has highlighted the case, enraging the public and prompting Rishi Sunak, the prime minister, to promise a new law to overturn the convictions and compensate the postmasters.
The world this week Business
- China became the world’s biggest exporter of vehicles in 2023, according to the China Passenger Car Association. The association thinks that China exported nearly 5.3m vehicles last year, accelerating it past Japan, which is thought to have sold 4.3m vehicles abroad. Petrol-powered vehicles accounted for the bulk of the exports (notably to Russia), but electric vehicles are taking a growing share of China’s overseas market. The CPCA reckons that 6.1m full-electric vehicles were sold in China last year, up by 22% from 2022.
- As Chinese carmakers move into top gear, Volkswagen finds itself falling behind in China, which was once a source of ambitious growth for the German company, VW’s sales in China rose by just 1.6% in 2023 (the overall domestic market grew by 5.6%), though the country still accounts fora third of its global market, vw is also struggling to keep up with demand for EVs. It delivered 394,000 fully electric vehicles worldwide in 2023, far behind the 1.6m that were sold by BYD, China's biggest electric-car maker.
- Boeing’s chief executive, Dave Calhoun, promised that the aerospace company would be completely transparent in helping an investigation into an incident in which a panel came off a 737 Max 9 passenger jet that had just taken off from Portland. Nobody was injured on the Alaska Airlines flight, which returned to the airport with a gaping hole in its side. The Federal Aviation Administration grounded some 737 Max 9s while inspections were carried out. The investigation's initial focus is on the bolts that secured the panel, which fell into a teacher’s garden in Portland.
- OpenAi responded in detail to a lawsuit lodged by the New York Times that claims the startup used the newspaper’s content to create and train its chatbot, ChatGPT. In a blog post OpenAi said the lawsuit was "without merit”, and that the Times was "not telling the full story".
- Meanwhile, the European Union announced an initial probe i nto whether Microsoft’s huge investment in OpenAi falls foul of its law on mergers. Britain's antitrust regulator opened a similar review in December.
- America’s Securities and Exchange Commission approved applications from some of the world’s biggest financial companies, such as BlackRock, to start offering exchange-traded funds tied to bitcoin for the first time, a huge boost for advocates of cryptocurrencies. The day before the announcement the X account of the sec was hacked by an attacker who posted a fake announcement that the regulator had already approved the ETFs, causing bitcoin’s price to rise briefly by more than $1,000.
- Hewlett Packard Enterprise agreed to buy Juniper Networks in a deal valued at $14bn. The acquisition will double HPE’s computer-networking business, and it also obtains Juniper’s artificial-intelligence unit, Mist Ai, which uses machine learning to improve user access to wireless systems.
- Stockmarkets in most countries may have had a patchy start to the year—with China’s csi 300 index falling to a five-year low—but not in Japan. The Nikkei and the Topix indices hit their highest levels since early 1990, boosted by investor cheer that the weaker yen is helping exports.
- Bill Ackman became embroiled in a spat with Business Insider, a news website, after it claimed that his wife, Neri Oxman, had plagiarised some work in her doctoral dissertation at mit in 2010 (Ms Oxman apologised for errors in four instances). Mr Ackman, one of America’s best-known activist investors, was a vocal critic of Claudine Gay, who resigned as Harvard’s president amid claims of plagiarism. Axel Springer, the web site’s publisher, took the rare step of ordering a review into the "motivation and the process" behind the piece.
- Overall losses from natural disasters around the world came to $25obn in 2023, about the same as 2022, according to Munich Re. An absence of mega-disasters in industrialised countries kept the figure down. The earthquakes in Turkey and Syria were the costliest disasters ($50bn in losses) followed by Typhoon Doksuri, which hit China ($25bn). Munich Re noted that 74,000 people died in natural disasters, far above the five-year average of 10,000.
The great British bake off
- Greggs, a purveyor of cheap and cheerful sandwiches and snacks in Britain, registered a 20% rise in sales in 2023 as it opened lots of new stores. The downmarket chain is often contrasted with the mid-market Pret a Manger, which operates in swankier areas. Academics from Sheffield Hallam University have even gone so far as to create a Greggs-Pret index using machine learning (what else) to assess if the number of Greggs shops in a town are a good measure of its "Northern-ness".
скачать журнал: The Economist - January 13 2024