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The Weekly Global Roundup

The Weekly Global Roundup: Trump In Davos: “America First Is Not America Alone” (January 22 to 27, 2018)

This roundup covers news summaries across six regions: Africa, the Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, North America, and South America. Wherever possible I draw links to Singapore, but I think it is more important to understand geopolitical developments around the world, to draw attention to meaningful news stories, and to highlight both positive and negative events.

Around the world, I rely primarily on the email newsletters from “The Economist“, “Foreign Policy“, “Muck Rack“, “The New York Times“, “The Wall Street Journal“, and “The World Post“. In Singapore, the weekly digests from the European Union Centre and the Middle East Institute are handy. Do send me recommendations of news outlets or articles too, to jinyao.guan.yin.miao[a]gmail.com!

Taken from http://static.politico.com/7f/3f/4cc5ed61441ca771e777d914d548/170228-donald-trump-blog-gty-1160.jpg.

President Donald Trump addresses congress for the first time.

January 22 to 27, 2018

President Donald Trump became the first sitting American president to attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, delivering a speech that “America first is not America alone”. He emphasised that his country was now an attractive place to invest, made scant mention of geopolitics, and touted the recently passed tax cuts. In the lead up to Mr. Trump’s visit, he had signed unilateral tariffs on washing machines and solar panels – Asian imports – prompting criticisms from South Korea’s Trade Ministry and China’s Commerce Ministry. South Korea has also since challenged the United States under the Safeguard Agreement of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), and “is already seeking WTO trade sanctions to retaliate for Washington’s failure to comply with an earlier WTO ruling“. In the same week too, the remaining 11 Pacific Rim countries of the Trans-Pacific Partnership moved ahead without the United States to reach broad agreement on a new deal.

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The Asia-Pacific


The Middle East

  • A hotel siege in Kabul, Afghanistan, left at least five people dead. The hotel was previously attacked, by Taliban fighters, in 2011.
  • The detonation of two car bombs in Benghazi, Libya, killed at least 34 people. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

North America

  • Amazon is opening its second headquarters in North America, and it has shortlisted a list of 20 places from 238 applications.
  • The national governing body for gymnastics in the United States, USA Gymnastics, is engulfed in “a scandal over sexual abuse by a former national team doctor”. Hundreds of victims have since delivered statements.
  • Senate Democrats and Republicans “were unable to agree on a stopgap funding measure to continue government services” – on the anniversary of President Donald Trump’s first year in office – leading to a government shutdown. The last shutdown happened in 2013.
  • Over the weekend, Senate Democrats then agreed to pass a short-term spending deal (until February 8), in exchange for an agreement by the Senate Republicans to consider an immigration bill in February.
  • Over the weekend too, hundreds of thousands of Americans turned out for the second Women’s March. The first happened last year, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, as “millions took to the streets to demonstrate against his presidency“.

Latin America

  • In Brazil, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said that “the number of confirmed cases of yellow fever outbreak” has tripled in recent weeks. Foreign travellers are now recommended by the WHO to get vaccination before travelling to the country.
  • Oil exports in Venezuela have been dropping – with oil output down 29 per cent last year – with implications for its economy.

About guanyinmiao

A man of knowledge lives by acting, not by thinking about acting. Carlos Castaneda.

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