Category: Politics

SOUTH AFRICA: Is the MTBPS worth the paper it’s written on?

  • Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) includes a less “active” stabilization of South Africa’s runaway debt than promised in June.
  • The government now makes even bigger promises on cutting the public-sector wage bill – a good signal but implementation prospects remain uncertain.
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POLAND: PiS moves toward challenging but inevitable coal phase-out

The Polish government appears committed to finally start the transition away from coal in the power sector. This will require difficult compromises with the country’s influential mining unions, and may trigger new protests and lower support for the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party in its electoral strongholds.… Read the rest

MACRO: Policy responses to Covid-19

Below is this week’s updated table on the health and economic policies that selected governments around the world are implementing to counter the fallout from Covid-19. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you want to discuss any of the countries mentioned in more detail. … Read the rest

NIGERIA: What next for #endSARS?

  • The #endSARS movement will likely retreat to social media for the foreseeable future and forfeit much of its leverage as a result.
  • Past precedent suggests little of substance will emanate from the official commissions of inquiry set up to investigate the armed forces’ human rights abuses.
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MALAYSIA: PM Muhyiddin survives, barely

The United Malays National Organization (UMNO) decided late Monday evening to continue supporting Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin. Over the weekend, the prime minister had asked the king to declare a state of emergency, which would have forestalled any attempt to bring down his government, either by the opposition or from within his own coalition.… Read the rest

CHILE: Key takeaways from constitutional referendum

  • A landslide in favor of a new constitution marks the beginning of an intense electoral cycle as well as the two-year constitutional process.
  • The results do not necessarily undermine the mechanism to ensure consensus and moderation in the new constitution.
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ITALY: Covid-19 rules

The cabinet will meet today (27 October) in the afternoon to finalize a relief package for workers and businesses that will suffer due to the restrictions that came into effect yesterday.… Read the rest

JAPAN: Suga’s climate pledge catalyzes long-delayed debate on energy future

  • In a policy speech that largely stressed continuity with the Abe administration, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga announced that Japan will target net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
  • The target, though distant, will force the Suga government to grapple with questions about the relative balance of nuclear power, renewables, and fossil fuels in its medium-term energy mix.
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China’s health authorities have discovered new Covid-19 cases. Italy has announced new restrictive measures. Thailand’s parliament will start a special session over anti-government demonstrations. Peru’s President Martin Vizcarra could face another impeachment process. … Read the rest