Insights

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EU farm policy reform: what’s on the table?

Sustainability

Mollie Brennan
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Last week’s extensive negotiations in the European Parliament have set the tone for how far the EU is willing to integrate its stated sustainability objectives with agricultural policy. The two areas of policy have often been at loggerheads, but the Green Deal and the Farm to Fork strategy released earlier this year had created some expectation that things may be shifting…

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China’s engineered economic recovery

General Policy

Jens Presthus
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The dust has now settled on China’s latest GDP figures. As usual, even without going into questions about the reliability of official numbers, the data dump has led to some confusion. Strong headline GDP growth has been widely reported, both inside and outside of China – pointing to a strong recovery. However, while China without a doubt currently is doing better than…

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A brave new world: the limitations of the G20 debt suspension extension

General Policy

Isabelle Trick
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At the beginning of the year, many low- and middle-income countries were already struggling with increasingly large debt burdens. Then, these debt levels collided with a global health emergency and an economic crisis – reducing access to finance just when it was needed most. Given the ongoing impact of the pandemic and what looks like an increasingly bumpy and uneven…

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General Politics

Armenia-Azerbaijan: two global implications of the conflict

General Politics

Frederick Michell
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One of the world’s longest running conflicts has once again erupted, causing devastation and instability across the South Caucasus. For citizens of Nagorno-Karabakh, a mountainous region situated between Armenia and Azerbaijan, their home has once again become a warzone with no sustained peace in sight. But this conflict also extends beyond the region, creating wider…

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General Politics

Protectionism or power? Understanding the EU debate on open strategic autonomy

General Politics

Tom White
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Tom White, Director, Ana Martinez, Practice Lead for EU Policy and Denzil Davidson, Practice Lead for Financial Services and EU Institutions examine the EU’s policy of open strategic autonomy, what it means in practice and how it is likely to evolve.

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Dombrovskis and trade: strategic enabler?

Trade & Manufacturing

Alessandro Gangarossa
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The European Commission’s executive vice president, Valdis Dombrovskis, has now formally taken on his new responsibilities as trade commissioner. His appointment raises the trade portfolio to the same level as the executive vice presidencies leading on the green and digital transitions. EU trade policy will be seen as strategically instrumental to deliver on the…

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Indonesia’s omnibus bill: controversies and key implications

General Policy

Brigitta Kinadi
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Senior Associate Brigitta Kinadi is joined by Kevin O’Rourke, Indonesia political risk analyst and writer of the Reformasi weekly newsletter. They discuss the major changes and repercussions of the recently passed omnibus bill in Indonesia that primarily aims to create jobs and boost investment in the country.

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Is an EU-wide ban on petrol and diesel cars imminent?

Sustainability

Ermenegilda Boccabella
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A decision is imminent on whether the UK will bring forward its phase-out date for vehicles with internal combustion engines (ICE) from 2035 to 2030 – in itself already a radically different position than this time last year where the phase-out date was set at 2040. Pressure is mounting from all sides as without this decision, the UK stands no chance of meeting its net…

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Permanent change in the concrete jungle

General Policy

Tom King
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New York City occupies a space like no other in the modern Western mind. Its liminal status, halfway between imagination and reality, has been entrenched through decades of cultural saturation. Coming to the city for the first time, you feel you have already been there; its sights and sounds are already familiar, a composite of scenes from half-remembered TV shows and…

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General Politics

The bigger question behind the right to work from home

General Politics

Stephen Adams
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The German coalition government has confirmed that it plans to push ahead with plans to give workers a legal right to work from home. This idea was floated back in the Spring when lockdowns began, and some unions began to advocate a framework that would prevent employers hurrying people back into offices. There is still a lot we don’t know about the German law, including…

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Does the election actually matter for the US energy transition?

Energy & Commodities

Ermenegilda Boccabella
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There is no doubt that the US will be key to global decarbonisation and for the energy sector, the upcoming American elections in November will be a turning point. While it is clear that a returned President Trump would not actively seek to reduce emissions in a second term, net-zero expectations from other major states have nevertheless moved ahead without his version of…

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Brexit: deal, no deal, bad no deal

General Policy

Denzil Davidson
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It has become something of a ritual in the past three months for political leaders on both sides of the Channel to urge the UK’s and EU’s negotiators to work “intensively” to resolve the Brexit impasse. Following Saturday’s call between Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Commission President Ursula von der Leyen they are to work intensively again. But intensity of…

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Boohoo's troubles: ESG cannot be ignored

Sustainability

Michaela Smart
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Worker exploitation and poor labour conditions have long been a major problem for the fashion supply chain. Advocates have been campaigning for better conditions for years, but the Boohoo scandal in its UK factories this summer was a salutary reminder that this is not a problem confined to emerging economies.

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An unlikely Trans-Pacific alliance? The UK’s case for CPTPP membership

Trade & Manufacturing

Elly Darkin
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When the UK and Japan finalised their new Free Trade Agreement (FTA) this month, Tokyo made a point of insisting that the agreement was a stepping-stone to UK accession to the CPTPP, or Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership. Joining the Asia-Pacific trade deal - which includes Japan, Australia and Canada among others - has long been a…

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General Politics

Party over patria: The failure of political debate in America

General Politics

Joe Palombo
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Last night’s US presidential debate confirmed the extent to which partisan politics dominates political discourse (or the lack thereof) in America. But it wasn’t the bombast and belligerence of the two candidates (one in particular) that stood out to me. I have come to expect those from contemporary American politicians. Rather, it was something that remained unsaid that…

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Uber survives to fight another day in London, but for how long?

General Policy

Max von Thun
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Defying expectations that it would be banned from the city entirely, yesterday Uber won an appeal at a London court enabling it to continue operating in the British capital. While acknowledging Uber’s historical failings, the court argued that the ride-hailing platform was “fit and proper” to continue serving customers in London, subject to fulfilling certain conditions…

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General Politics

The centre loses – again: three lessons from Italy’s ballot box results

General Politics

Alessandro Gangarossa
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Last week Italy overwhelmingly approved proposals to reduce the size of its parliament with a 70%-30% referendum vote. Six major regions also elected local governments, which yield real power in Italy. These delivered a tie between the centre-left coalition and the right-of-centre bloc, each securing three regions. The elections and the referendum offered almost the…

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Is the UK Government's use of algorithms missing the beat?

TMT

Alessandra Baldacchino
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The pressure on governments to cut costs and increase efficiency in core governance functions is set to increase. In the UK, the covid-19 pandemic has brought a huge expansion of public spending, while at the same time posing challenges to how public services are delivered.

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