September 25th – The BESA Times
Thirty-Ninth Edition - Monday, 25th
Every week, a complete snapshot of what happened around the world in the past seven days
On Sunday, Germans went to the polls and while Angela Merkel won her fourth term as Chancellor, those elections were nonetheless very significant. They were the first since Angela Merkel’s party the Christian Democrat (CDU) decided to open the country’s borders to almost 900 000 people asylum seekers back in September 2015. These elections saw the rise of the anti-Islam and anti-Immigration party Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), which came third with 94 seats, a much better result than expected. This election will not just be significant for Germany but also for the EU as a whole given the country’s influence over the the continent.
Hurricane Irma is estimated to be the one of the most destructive hurricanes in history (alongside Hurricane Harvey) with an expected 100bn USD or more of damage. For now, there are 25 recorded deaths in the Caribbean. The hurricane has had a significant impact also on the farming sector in the Caribbean and US. In Georgia 20-40% of cotton farmers will lose their crops. The biggest damage was caused to the island of Barbuda, which for the first time in 300 years does not have a living person in the Island.
What happened in Kenya during its elections will be remembered in history as a new chapter for Africa. That was thanks to David Maraga, the chief of justice of Kenya who annulled the just-concluded elections due to “irregularities and illegalities”. Now the elections would be repeated and Uhuru Kenyatta, the winner, will have to wait until October to see if his mandate will materialize. Such an event is very significant for Africa as the continent is usually still seen as corrupt and unstable.
On September 22nd, Kim Jong Un, North Korea’s dictator, threatened to throw a hydrogen bomb in the Pacific Ocean after the latest Donald Trump’s claim to “totally destroy” North Korea. The US and North Korea are now engaged in a bitter war of words over North Korea’s nuclear programme. Although further economic sanctions are being implemented, North Korea does not show any signs of backing down on its nuclear ambitions.
What to remember of last week's news?
On September 22nd, London decided to not renew Uber’s license. The TfL (Transport for London) said that Uber’s “approach and conduct demonstrate a lack of corporate responsibility in relation to… potential public safety and security implications.” This decision means that Uber will lose access to one of its biggest global markets from on October 1. The company has announced it will appeal against the decision.
Last Friday, UK Prime Minister, Theresa May delivered a long awaited speech in Florence in a bid to break the deadlock in Brexit negotiations. She asked the European Union for the extra two years for the UK to withdraw from the EU. In her first Brexit speech since January, she stated that Britain would continue to contribute to the E.U. budget for a few more years. She also suggested that she would seek to remain in the E.U.’s single market and some form of customs union until 2021. Some sources claim her government would be ready to pay up to 20bn euros as part of the so-called divorce bill.
Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckenberg will provide the U.S. Congress the content of 3000 advertisements that were purchased by Russian users during the 2016 US presidential race. The Social Network’s influence during the 2016 elections has proven to be crucial and the information being handed over may be of importance.
Hiroto Saikawa, Chief executive of Japanese car group Nissan, has stated that he is going to bring his company through huge industrial innovations as he wants to move the production always more into electric vehicles. Although the electric vehicle’s manufacturing is only 1% of Nissan’s revenue Mr. Saikawa believes it will not be long before combustion engines will start losing market power.
A Week in the Financial Markets
Our Homemade Article
What self-driving cars can teach us about the future: The power of innovation in shaping a traditional industry by Francesco Patroncini
What to expect for next week?
In the next few days, it will be very important to see how North Korea will act with respect to its nuclear programme. The Kenyan elections will also be a topic of importance in the next days and lastly, Uber’s case in London will be a new chapter for all tech giants operating in tightly regulated markets.
Did you know?
The IPhone 8 launched on September 22, but unexpectedly the demand for it was lower than for its predecessors. Much of the blame is being given to the IPhone X which is said to release in November. Although the lower demand, analysts at Morgan Stanley are saying that Apple is increasing its prices and they see it as a sign of the company’s confidence to innovate.
WRITTEN BY RUGGERO CALAMAI
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