Congo Republic – Lack of Loan Agreement Adds to Risk

President Denis Sassou-Nguesso is firmly in control following the predictable landslide victory of the governing PCT and its various legislative allies at elections held in 2017. The impotence of the divided opposition has been compounded by government repression that has resulted in the detention Read Entire Entry

China – New Investment Law Leaves Gaps

The recent annual convening of the so-called “two sessions” of China’s legislative bodies, the rubber-stamping NPC and the advisory CPPCC, resulted in the approval of a revised foreign investment law that will take effect in 2020.  Details have not yet been published, but Premier Li Keqiang Read Entire Entry

Vietnam – Steady Policy Course

The death of President Tran Dai Quang in September 2018 delivered an opportunity for Nguyen Phu Trong, the secretary-general of the ruling CPV, to consolidate his position of authority in the command structure of the single-party state. Trong had previously won a power struggle with former Prime Read Entire Entry

Spain – Snap Election Brings Fresh Uncertainty

Voters will go to the polls to elect members of the national Parliament in late April, more than a year ahead of schedule, after Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez’s minority government failed to secure support for its 2019 budget. The impasse is partly attributable to the ideological incompatibility Read Entire Entry

Russia – Putin Playing Defense at Home

President Vladimir Putin won a six-year extension of his tenure as president by a landslide at an election held in March 2018, and his allies in United Russia control a comfortable majority in the national legislature. However, Putin’s stock has diminished in recent months, amid rumblings of Read Entire Entry

Hong Kong – Beijing Chipping Away at Autonomy

The Beijing government’s further encroachment on the autonomy that Hong Kong enjoys as a special administrative region of China will continue to have a mildly negative effect on political risk in what is otherwise one of the most attractive business climates in the world. Chinese President Xi Read Entire Entry

United Arab Emirates – Image Issues May Blunt Impact of FDI Law

The UAE is navigating turbulent regional waters as international opprobrium rains upon its closest ally, Saudi Arabia. As in Saudi Arabia, the de facto head of government in the UAE is the crown prince, Mohammed bin Zayed (popularly known as MBZ), who, acting in his ailing father’s stead, is also Read Entire Entry

Slovakia – Smer Remains under a Cloud of Scandal

Robert Fico, the leader of the main governing Direction-Social Democracy (Smer), continues to roil the political waters, nine months after he resigned as prime minister, amid a scandal involving the murder of an investigative journalist digging into government corruption. Back in November, Fico Read Entire Entry

Israel – Government Falls

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition government was on shaky ground from its inception in May 2015, and met an early demise in December, prompting the scheduling of a general election for April 2019. Against expectations, a conflict over security policy, rather than a budget dispute or Read Entire Entry

Zimbabwe – Political Climate Inhospitable to Reform

Having achieved the presidency by means of a military coup carried out in November 2017, Emmerson Mnangagwa fulfilled his goal of obtaining a popular mandate at an election held in late July, although the result was tainted by credible allegations of various widespread irregularities. At his Read Entire Entry