The Economist Asia Edition

The Economist Asia Edition August 29, 2020

The Economist is the premier source for the analysis of world business and current affairs, providing authoritative insight and opinion on international news, world politics, business, finance, science and technology, as well as overviews of cultural trends and regular Special reports on industries and countries.

United Kingdom
The Economist Newspaper Limited - Asia Pacific
51 期号


coronavirus briefs

Researchers in Hong Kong reported the world’s first genetically verified case of someone who has been reinfected with covid-19, suggesting that immunity from the disease does not necessarily last long. The WHO called for more studies. Mexico officially passed 62,000 deaths in total and 574,000 cases. Unofficially, the real numbers are thought to be perhaps three times higher. In the United States the number of new cases continued to fall. Japan was reportedly set to lift its ban on foreign residents returning to the country. Joe Biden said he would “listen to the scientists” and, if elected president, would be willing to shut the economy to stop another wave of infections. The World Economic Forum postponed next year’s Davos summit from January until the middle of the year. For our latest coverage of the virus…

the world this week

Politics Alexei Navalny, Russia’s most prominent opposition leader and anti-corruption activist, fell into a coma after being poisoned. He was held for two days in a Russian hospital, before being released and flown to Germany, where doctors said they thought the poison included cholinesterase inhibitors, an ingredient in some Russian-made military toxins. Kremlin flacks said perhaps he was suffering from low blood sugar. Germany has offered him asylum. Hundreds of thousands of protesters continued to demand the resignation of Alexander Lukashenko, Belarus’s dictator, despite facing arrest and torture. Mr Lukashenko flew by helicopter to a secure location and brandished an AK-47 rifle. Western countries have not recognised a rigged election on August 9th that Mr Lukashenko “won”. Phil Hogan, the EU’s commissioner for trade, resigned after violating covid-19 social-distancing rules while on a…

what putin fears

NOTHING IS AS inspiring as seeing people take to the streets to demand their freedoms—and nothing is as terrifying for the dictators they are defying. In Belarus, among scenes that recall the revolts of 1989, people are turning out in their hundreds of thousands after a blatantly rigged election, heedless of the threat of state violence. In the Russian city of Khabarovsk tens of thousands march week after week to protest against the arrest of the local governor and the imposition of Moscow’s rules. Vladimir Putin is rattled. Why else is Alexei Navalny, an anti-corruption crusader and Mr Putin’s greatest popular rival for the Russian presidency, lying poisoned in a Berlin hospital bed? Regimes that rule by fear, live in fear. They fear that one day the people will no longer…

how not to handle a scandal

THE ALLEGATIONS are unproven but stunning. In a 63-page deposition, disclosed on August 19th, Emilio Lozoya, once head of Pemex, Mexico’s state oil firm, accuses 17 prominent Mexicans of corruption. According to Mr Lozoya, Enrique Peña Nieto, president in 2012-18, benefited from the payment of millions of dollars by Odebrecht, a Brazilian construction firm that has bribed officials across Latin America. The money financed his election campaign and coaxed legislators to vote for energy reforms (see Americas section). The governor of Veracruz gave him a Ferrari, Mr Lozoya says. Felipe Calderón, Mr Peña’s predecessor, oversaw corrupt dealings between Pemex and Braskem, a petrochemical firm part-owned by Odebrecht. Mr Lozoya fingers two candidates in the presidential election in 2018. The size of the pay-offs, and the status of alleged recipients, would…

the forgotten problem

OF ALL THE troubles facing the world, the rising prevalence of dementia might seem among the less pressing. The reason behind it—longer lifespans—is to be cheered; it does not advance at the speed of a viral infection but with the ponderous inevitability of demographic change; and its full effects will not be felt until far into the future. But the reality is very different. As our special report this week makes clear, dementia is already a global emergency. Even now, more people live with it than can be looked after humanely. No cure is in the offing. And no society has devised a sustainable way to provide and pay for the care that people with it will need. “Dementia” is an umbrella term for a range of conditions, with a variety…

un-american activities

THE CURTAINS are still down at most American cinemas but in China the box office is back in business. This week audiences lined up—socially distanced, of course—to see films including “The Eight Hundred”, a war drama for which Americans will have to wait. Next week Disney will send its summer tentpole, “Mulan”, straight to streaming in most of the West, whereas Chinese filmgoers will get the chance to watch it on the big screen. China’s box office increasingly props up Hollywood. China may overtake America as the world’s largest cinema market by revenue this year. Meanwhile, Chinese media companies are investing in American films. The result is that, from “Mulan” to “Pacific Rim” and “Kung Fu Panda”, Hollywood’s output is geared towards the Chinese market (see Business section). But it is also…