Sovereign wealth could fund the SDGs


The striking fact is that funding is available, but it is not flowing to where it is needed. The total investment available is approximately $98 trillion, including commercial banks, investment banks, insurance and public pensions, sovereign wealth funds, equity funds and public global funds, such as donors, foundations and endowments. This mounting finance gap is […]

The Fourth Industrial Revolution is redefining the economy as we know it


The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) upends current economic frameworks. Who makes money – and how – has changed. Demographics have changed. Even the skills that brought our society to where we are today have changed. Leaders must account for these transformations or risk leaving behind their companies, their customers and their constituents. The top three […]

In our digital age, taxation needs to become more mobile..


For a government to levy corporate tax on a foreign firm, tax rules require a “nexus” or link between the taxpayer and the taxing jurisdiction, typically in the form of physical presence such as offices or workers. In our digital world, firms can interact with users and create value in a country without needing to […]

Successful Singapore – the secrets of the world’s most competitive economy | World Economic Forum


In the World Economic Forum’s latest Global Competitiveness Report, Singapore scored 85 points out of a possible 100, placing it above the US, Hong Kong, the Netherlands and Switzerland in the top five. It was awarded more than 90 points in four of the 12 gauges used to rank the 141 countries and scored more […]

A small group of world leaders are standing together against inequality


This exciting group is brought together by the Prime Minister of Sweden, Stefan Löfven, a former trade union leader who leads a nation that at times has felt like a lonely voice in a world of rising inequality. Standing with him were leaders such as the President of Ethiopia – a woman president of one […]

Why Africa’s Industrialization Won’t Look Like China’s


eyegelb/Getty Images China designed and executed a policy that shrank the industrialization process in a mere 25 years — something that many economies took at least a century to do. That redesign has brought immense dislocation in global commerce and industry, enabling China to become one of the world’s leading economies. China’s success has led […]

Ranking 42 Countries by Ease of Doing Digital Business


Paul Taylor/Getty Images The World Bank’s annual Doing Business survey has been described by some as the “World Cup” or “Olympics” for governments competing to make their countries attractive to businesses. The ranking measures how easy it is to do business in a country by examining regulatory environments and is enormously influential: it has inspired […]

Research: How Political Connections Help (and Hurt) Chinese Startups


David Bokeh/Getty Images New ventures need resources to survive, let alone thrive. In emerging markets, their survival also depends on their ability to deal with what academics call the “institutional void” — the lack of strong market intermediaries ensuring the smooth flow of business. In this void, where rules are loosely interpreted, and information hard […]

The Gap Between Large and Small Companies Is Growing. Why?


Gandee Vasan/Getty Images Research and news headlines are replete with the idea that traditional large companies can’t innovate, and that smaller digital companies will render many larger ones extinct. While we’ve seen numerous startups of the last thirty years not only disrupt businesses but become the megacorporations of today, we wondered whether this disruption is […]

These 5 industries can drive digital financial inclusion


Digital payments are no different. Cards and digital wallets are tools; it’s the act of using these tools for making payments that gives them impact. In the past decade, the world has made tremendous progress in expanding access to digital financial services to those at the base of the pyramid, but this has not been […]

The Fourth Industrial Revolution: what it means and how to respond


We stand on the brink of a technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work, and relate to one another. In its scale, scope, and complexity, the transformation will be unlike anything humankind has experienced before. We do not yet know just how it will unfold, but one thing is clear: the […]

Britain’s constitutional time-bomb – The next to blow


BRITONS PRIDE themselves on their “unwritten” constitution. America, France and Germany need rules to be set down in black and white. In the Mother of Parliaments democracy has blossomed for over 300 years without coups, revolution or civil war, Irish independence aside. Its politics are governed by an evolving set of traditions, conventions and laws […]

America is deploying a new economic arsenal to assert its power – Weapons of mass disruption


WHEN DONALD TRUMP arrived in the Oval Office he promised to restore America’s might. His method has turned out to be a wholesale weaponisation of economic tools. The world can now see the awesome force that a superpower can project when it is unconstrained by rules or allies. On May 30th the president threatened crippling […]

Why the European Union should not ditch bilateral investment treaties – Foreign-investment disputes


AFTER THE fall of the Berlin Wall and before central and eastern European countries began joining the European Union in 2004, officials in Brussels strongly encouraged bilateral investment treaties (BITs) between the bloc’s members and their neighbours to the east. BITs are inter-governmental agreements that govern disputes between foreign investors and host states. Their purpose […]

Are the ideas of John Maynard Keynes making a comeback?


John Maynard Keynes, the British economist whose theories dominated the industrial postwar West, argued for government spending as a means to counteract slow economic growth. Especially during a recovery from a recession or depression, he reasoned, private demand is insufficient, so extra spending by government is needed to ensure that aggregate demand remains high enough […]

New Zealand has unveiled its first ‘well-being’ budget


Based on the idea that gauging the long-term impact of policies on the quality of people’s lives is better than focusing on short-term output measures, the initiative has five priorities for 2019: aiding the transition to a sustainable and low-emissions economy, supporting a thriving nation in the digital age, lifting Māori and Pacific incomes, skills […]

Europe and America must work to stop their relationship unravelling – Transatlantic relations


THE ATLANTIC OCEAN is starting to look awfully wide. To Europeans the United States appears ever more remote, under a puzzling president who delights in bullying them, questions the future of the transatlantic alliance and sometimes shows more warmth towards dictators than democrats. Americans see an ageing continent that, though fine for tourists, is coming […]

China may soon run its first annual current-account deficit in decades – The big flip


THAT CHINA sells more to the world than it buys from it can seem like an immutable feature of the economic landscape. Every year for a quarter of a century China has run a current-account surplus (roughly speaking, the sum of its trade balance and net income from foreign investments). This surplus has been blamed […]

A Chinese economist explains what we get wrong about the trade war


Fearful that China’s rise threatens livelihoods in the United States and anxious to protect the intellectual property of American companies, President Trump slapped tariffs on $250bn worth of Chinese goods in 2018. China, meanwhile, retaliated with duties on $110bn of US products. The US had threatened to escalate the situation by increasing tariff rates on […]

Oh **UK! What next for Brexit? – A country in chaos


WHEN HISTORIANS come to write the tale of Britain’s attempts to leave the European Union, this week may be seen as the moment the country finally grasped the mess it was in. In the campaign, Leavers had promised voters that Brexit would be easy because Britain “holds all the cards”. This week Parliament was so […]

A French habit is spreading – European governments are intervening in business again


IF YOU CAN’T beat them, adopt their worst economic policies. Worried about the “aggressive strategies” of America and China, France’s president, Emmanuel Macron, issued a Europe-wide proclamation on March 4th that, among other things, proposed a new revolutionary era of government intervention in European Union businesses (see article). “We cannot suffer in silence,” he declared, […]

Europe and America must work to stop their relationship unravelling – Transatlantic relations


THE ATLANTIC OCEAN is starting to look awfully wide. To Europeans the United States appears ever more remote, under a puzzling president who delights in bullying them, questions the future of the transatlantic alliance and sometimes shows more warmth towards dictators than democrats. Americans see an ageing continent that, though fine for tourists, is coming […]

The struggle to reform China’s economy – Pandas can fly


FOR THE past two weeks Chinese and American negotiators have been locked in talks in Beijing and Washington to end their trade conflict before the deadline of March 1st, when America will ratchet up tariffs on Chinese goods or, perhaps, let the talks stretch into extra time. Don’t be distracted by mind-numbing details on soyabean […]

Millennial socialism – The resurgent left


AFTER THE collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the 20th century’s ideological contest seemed over. Capitalism had won and socialism became a byword for economic failure and political oppression. It limped on in fringe meetings, failing states and the turgid liturgy of the Chinese Communist Party. Today, 30 years on, socialism is back in […]

How young people are turning the tide against corruption


This is not filling global youth with hope for the future. Young people continue to name corruption as the biggest challenge they face, according to a survey carried out through the Accountability Lab in conjunction the World Economic Forum. And with good reason – corruption has a high cost for society and the economy. It […]

The fragmentation of the big parties – British politics


IN THE PAST few years many of the MPs in Britain’s main parties have grown increasingly unhappy. One reason Brexit has proved tricky is that the party divide does not map onto views about Europe. This week 11 moderate MPs, eight Labour and three Conservative, decided that they had had enough—and more may join them. […]

Thailand’s king blocks his sisters attempt to become prime minister – Thai politics


THE PLAN was too bold. On the morning of February 8th the Thai Raksa Chart party surprised the world. It submitted just one name to the Election Commission to run as its candidate for the office of prime minister: Princess Ubolratana. The likely outcome of an election slated for March 24th seemed to change in […]

Sweden gives all employees time off to be entrepreneurs


Anyone who’s been in full-time employment for at least six months is entitled to apply for the unpaid sabbatical, or tjänstledighet, as it’s called in Sweden. Employers can only turn the request down if the employee is vital to the business’s operations. Also, your new idea can’t compete with your existing employer, nor cause them […]

Four ways we can fix economics in 2019


A Brexiteer’s statement in the wake of the referendum in 2016 captures the frustrations felt by many under the twin forces of globalization and the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Never has the economy changed so quickly, nor with such glaring visibility of the gap between the winners and those left behind. The backlash is hardly surprising. […]

Chinese upside down digger

Chinese investment in infrastructure is often a diplomatic trap – Banyan


FOR MONTHS Mahathir Mohamad has been plucking up courage to declare that, when it comes to Chinese investment in infrastructure, his is the Malaysia that can say no. At a projected cost of $20bn, the East Coast Rail Link, planned to run down peninsular Malaysia’s eastern seaboard before cutting west, is a big deal. In […]

The top 10 European cities to launch a business in after Brexit


Brexit. Since June 2016, it’s been the word on everyone’s lips and – with fresh commentary flooding news outlets and social media every day – at everyone’s fingertips. Today, much of this discourse is fuelled simply by uncertainty. We all know how Brexit came to be, but as yet nobody knows exactly what’ll happen after […]

The steam has gone out of globalisation – Slowbalisation


WHEN AMERICA took a protectionist turn two years ago, it provoked dark warnings about the miseries of the 1930s. Today those ominous predictions look misplaced. Yes, China is slowing. And, yes, Western firms exposed to China, such as Apple, have been clobbered. But in 2018 global growth was decent, unemployment fell and profits rose. In […]

Why universities for the elderly are booming in China – The Economist explains


SEVERAL times a year, groups of silver-haired Chinese people camp out overnight. They do so in order to get prime spots to register for places at the country’s universities for the elderly. Since 1983, when China’s first such school opened, 70,000 more have cropped up across the country. They offer courses in pursuits like dancing, […]

How to survive and thrive in our age of uncertainty


We are living through an era of intense turbulence, disillusionment and bewilderment. Deepening geopolitical tensions are transforming international relations, and political tribalism is revealing deep fissures within countries. The spread of exponential technologies is upending long-held assumptions about security, politics, economics and so much more. At least two factors distinguish the current phase of globalization […]

What Countries and Companies Can Do When Trade and Cybersecurity Overlap


Jeffrey Coolidge/Getty Images Cybersecurity as a key issue for trade policy is a relatively new development. In the last few years there have been a number of news reports about various governments’ incorporating spyware, malware, or similar programs into computer-based products that are exported around the world. The governments typically have worked with private companies […]

3 ways to be a good leader in the Fourth Industrial Revolution


The world is seeing revolutionary advances in science and technology – artificial intelligence, gene editing, robotics, and so on – that have together been dubbed the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”. Success in this new era – whether that means corporate profits, macroeconomic growth, human welfare or solving the most intractable problems facing the world – will […]

Is this a turning point in the fight against slavery?


Arguably the most famous brand in the world, Apple had not only publicly taken steps to try to eradicate forced labour from its operations, it had walked away with the top prize. Despite its vast and complex networks of supply chains, the high-profile jury of experts judged that Apple was “leading the way in all […]

Carlos Ghosn, Nissan, and the Need for Stronger Corporate Governance in Japan


Westend61/Getty Images Carlos Ghosn was widely recognized as a hero in Japan for turning around Nissan when it was on the brink of bankruptcy in 1999. Things couldn’t look more different today. Ghosn was recently arrested for financial misconduct, fired from his position as Nissan’s board chairman, and criticized by Nissan’s Japanese CEO for accumulating too much power. […]