From the CEO – February 2018

Dear Clients, With volatility and risk remaining at relatively high levels following the global sell-off (and partial recovery) in equities earlier this month, we’ve received several calls from clients about oil prices and how political risk might affect them. The inquiries are relevant as the Read Entire Entry

Botswana – New President May Struggle to Unite BDP

The imminent transfer of the presidency from Ian Khama to his vice president, Mokgweetsi Masisi, will provide the latter with 18 months to settle into the top job before leading the incumbent BDP into the next general election campaign in October 2019. However, he will inherit a financial scandal Read Entire Entry

Tunisia – Timid Approach to Reform

In early September, Prime Minister Yousef Chahed carried out a sweeping Cabinet reshuffle that included the replacement of 13 ministers, including the heads of the ministries of Finance, Defense, and Interior. The move followed weeks of wrangling between the two main governing parties, Nidaa Tounes Read Entire Entry

Philippines – Duterte Popular as Economy Thrives

On December 10, Fitch raised the Philippines’ sovereign credit rating from BBB- to the higher investment grade of BBB, in line with the assessment of Standard and Poor’s, and a notch above Moody’s. Government officials pointed to the move as a vote of confidence in the pro-growth economic Read Entire Entry

Nicaragua – Sanctions Threat

Municipal elections were held on November 5, and, to the surprise of no one, the result was another landslide victory for the ruling FSLN. However, the opposition’s claims of vote-rigging and the government’s heavy-handed response to the related post-election unrest increase the likelihood that Read Entire Entry

South Korea – President Meeting Challenges

Moon Jae-in won an early presidential election held in May on the strength of a platform that included promises to rein in the power of the country’s large family-run corporations (chaebol) and to increase government transparency, issues that assumed great importance for voters in the wake of a Read Entire Entry

Sudan – Bashir’s Political Efforts Rewarded

Efforts by President Omar Hassan al-Bashir to bring a lasting peace to war-torn Sudan have made great strides since the start of the year, most notably through the formation of a government of national consensus (GNC) that includes Bashir’s NCP and opposition groups that have taken part in a Read Entire Entry

Hungary – Orbán Tests EU’s Patience

The conservative populist government made up of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz and its tiny ally, the KDNP, remains remarkably stable, despite growing tensions in Hungary’s relationship with the EU. Although the latest battle stems from the Orbán government’s rejection of the EU’s Read Entire Entry

Libya – Balance of Power Shifts in Haftar’s Favor

As the mandate of the UN-backed government in Tripoli approaches its expiration date at the end of the year, pressure is building for Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj and the GNA to negotiate a political truce with the rival administration in Tobruk that clears the way to hold elections for a unified Read Entire Entry

Italy – Electoral Law Puts M5S at a Disadvantage

The main governing PD has been preoccupied for the past several months with passing a new electoral law in advance of a general election required by May 2018. The Parliament recently approved the so-called “Rosatellum” law, under which parties will be permitted to form alliances prior to the Read Entire Entry