Insights

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Past the tipping point

Energy & Commodities

Ermenegilda Boccabella
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The covid-19 crisis has more than shaken our society, it has changed us. Almost every element of day-to-day life has been altered or adjusted. Some of those changes might be permanent. None more so than the energy sector.

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General Politics

Who speaks for Europe’s taxpayers? The politics of tax in the EU’s recovery plan

General Politics

Tom White
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As lockdowns across EU countries are lifted and exceptional financial support for businesses is wound down, attention is turning to economic stimulus. Germany’s package of tax cuts last week highlighted how consumption taxes can be an important tool for boosting and targeting consumer purchasing power: VAT will be cut from 19% to 16% for most purchases, and from 7% to 5%…

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Asia policymaker perspectives: Green mobility and infrastructure in Southeast Asia

Sustainability

Andrew Yeo
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In a new series of interviews, members of Global Counsel's Asia team will interview thought-leaders in policy and business from across the region, focusing on key themes for Global Counsel including geopolitics, trade and technological developments and the impact on business and politics.

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Risks under the radar: Anticipating supply chain risks for the UK food and drink sector

Sustainability

Geoffrey Norris
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The 2018 shortage of CO2 highlighted the large scale reliance on CO2 in the food and drink industry and the fragility of the supply chain delivering CO2 into the market. In this report commissioned by the Food and Drink Federation, Global Counsel examines other potential risks that may currently be underestimated within the food and drink sector and sets forth a framework…

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The looming risks of China’s corporate social credit system

General Policy

Jens Presthus
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China’s corporate social credit system (SCS) is set to be rolled out on a large scale this year. It rates, sanctions and rewards companies operating in China based on a long list of metrics and imposes strict rules that Beijing says aim to root out “untrustworthy” companies. With the social credit system, it could be argued that Beijing is also more strictly enforcing…

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The GOP tries to flip the script on climate change

Sustainability

Miranda Lutz
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Heading into the 2020 elections, the Democrats have a clear lead over the Republicans in voter confidence in their handling of energy and environmental policy. Joe Biden leads Donald Trump on both policy themes by substantial margins (see charts). 

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US policy update: prospects for further US stimulus and the race for the Senate

General Policy

Joe Palombo
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This US election cycle, GC team members in the Washington, DC and London offices are holding a series of conversations on the elections and wider US policy issues, and how each might impact investors and companies on both sides of the Atlantic. Below is a brief extract from the sixth conversation in the series, which explored the prospect of further US stimulus and the…

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What matters for post-covid supply chain policy in DC?

Trade & Manufacturing

Miranda Lutz
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Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, headlines of breakdowns in US supply chains and the inability of the US to meet the demand for essential goods like personal protective equipment (PPE) have taken over the news cycle. Through these challenges, the pandemic has brought to the forefront US reliance on Chinese manufacturing. But how will this policy issue manifest…

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Is it time to care about social care in the UK?

General Policy

Giulia Corsi
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One key result of the covid-19 crisis in the UK has been an acute realisation that what happens in community settings at local levels matters to public health and to the overall sustainability of the NHS. The conditions in care homes have become a pressure point for the government in managing the pandemic, as it has across the EU and US. Is this likely to produce…

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Interpreting the UK's new tariff regime

Trade & Manufacturing

Stephen Adams
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The UK government has published today the UK’s future MFN tariff schedule - the UK Global Tariff (UKGT). This proposed schedule will replace the EU’s Common External Tariff (CET) on 1 January 2021 and will apply to all imports into the UK on an MFN basis under ‘WTO terms’. Its main trust has been on simplification and, in parts, also liberalisation.

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What could a Biden presidency accomplish in a post-covid-19 world?

General Policy

Ben Bassett
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Although former vice president, Joe Biden, had campaigned largely as a restorationist candidate who would return the US to the Obama era, covid-19 has forced Biden to now do much more than just that. If elected in November, Biden’s presidency would be largely evaluated on his response to the pandemic and what actions he takes to ensure the US is better prepared against…

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General Politics

A budget for the 2020s or a return to the politics of 1997?

General Politics

Tom White
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Franco-German proposals to increase the 2021-27 EU budget could be their most significant since the 2018 Meseberg Declaration on euro zone governance. They provide clear political backing for European Council president, Charles Michel, and European Commission president, Ursula von der Leyen, both of whom have bet their reputations on EU funding for economic reconstruction…

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General Politics

Will Russia’s return to federalism survive the virus?

General Politics

Frederick Michell
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Since his election in 2000, Russian president, Vladimir Putin, has gradually brought the regions that make up Russia under the centralising authority of the Kremlin. Two decades on and these regions, which were relatively autonomous pre-Putin, have little genuine power beyond what is granted to them, until now. 

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Five US reasons why a US-UK trade agreement may be difficult this year

Trade & Manufacturing

Miranda Lutz
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On May 5th, the US and UK initiated discussions on a trade agreement between the two countries following the UK’s formal exit from the European Union. These negotiations are likely to take on a vastly different tone after being upended by covid-19, as the initial two-week session will be held over a series of video calls led by the US trade representative, Robert…

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US hospital policy and Certificate of Need laws in the wake of covid-19 with Mercatus Center

General Policy

Erin Caddell
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Global Counsel Director Erin Caddell is joined by Christopher Koopman and Chris Myers from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. They explore the history of Certificate of Need laws in the US and how they have affected the larger discussion surrounding healthcare capacity in the US in the wake of the covid-19 outbreak.

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Does big tech’s role in covid-19 prove it is a public utility?

TMT

Max von Thun
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Big tech is playing an outsized role in the covid-19 crisis, and its leading players are not shy in acknowledging it. Last week, responding to a legal ruling limiting its activities due to safety concerns in its warehouses, one of Amazon’s lawyers told a French court that the company is “extremely necessary for the continuity of the nation’s life; it brings essential…

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US policy update: Trump’s exit strategy, the elections and the future of US healthcare

General Policy

Joe Palombo
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This US election cycle, GC team members in the Washington, DC and London offices are holding a series of conversations on the elections and wider US policy issues, and how each might impact investors and companies on both sides of the Atlantic. Below is a brief extract from the fifth conversation in the series, which explored Trump’s exit strategy and the implications for…

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Alitalia bailout brings big choices for Italy

Trade & Manufacturing

Giuseppe Costanzo
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The covid-19 crisis has been difficult for the aviation sector, forcing airlines to cancel flights, lay off staff and ground their fleets. With the medium-term trajectory for passenger demand also far less certain, European airlines are poised to be the most prominent recipients of government support to businesses. Meanwhile, calls for funds to include conditionalities…

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