The Economist Asia Edition June 12, 2021

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

The numbers of new cases and deaths are steadily falling, according to the World Health Organisation, with “marked declines” in Europe and South-East Asia. But infections in Africa are rising. Unicef stepped up its campaign ahead of the G7 meeting to persuade rich countries to donate more vaccines to poor ones. Joe Biden was ready to donate 500m doses of the Pfizer jab. Japan sent 1.2m doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine to Taiwan to help fill a shortage. Chinese officials were quick to condemn the move for what they see as turning vaccine assistance into “a tool of political self-interest”. Taiwan accuses China of obstructing its attempts to buy the Pfizer jab. In England 80% of adults were estimated to have antibodies against covid-19, either through vaccination or having had the disease. → For…

the world this week

Politics The leaders of the g7 countries headed to the Cornish resort of Carbis Bay for a summit, their first in two years and the first for Joe Biden as America’s president. Ahead of the summit G7 finance ministers met in London, where they proposed the biggest shake-up of corporate tax since the 1920s, backing a minimum global rate of at least 15% and a clampdown on companies that park profits in tax havens. But the proposals will need the support of other countries and will be a hard sell in China and India, among other places. Democrats had to rethink their plan to pass comprehensive legislation on electoral reform, known as the For the People Act, when Joe Manchin, a Democratic senator from West Virginia, said he would not support it…

bunged up

AS THE WORLD economy wakes back up, shortages and price spikes are affecting everything from the supply of Taiwanese chips to the cost of a French breakfast. As we explain this week, one kind of bottleneck deserves special attention: the supply-side problems, such as scarce metals and land constraints, that threaten to slow the green-energy boom (see Briefing). Far from being transitory, these bottlenecks risk becoming a recurring feature of the world economy for years to come because the shift to a cleaner energy system is still only in its infancy. Governments must respond to these market signals, facilitating a huge private-sector investment boom over the next decade that increases capacity. If they don’t, they stand little chance of keeping their promises to reach “net-zero” emissions. Scientists and activists have worried…

inoculation, inoculation, inoculation

IMAGINE AN INVESTMENT that would earn a return of 17,900% in four years. Better yet, the initial outlay would be easily affordable. Who on Earth would pass up such an opportunity? The answer, it seems, is the leaders of the Group of Seven (G7), a club of rich democracies which holds its annual summit this week. By failing to act fast enough to inoculate the world against covid-19, they are passing up the deal of the century. That is not just economically foolish, it is a moral failure and a diplomatic disaster, too. On the face of things, the G7 is the very picture of concern. Boris Johnson, Britain’s prime minister and the host of the summit, wants it to come up with 1bn doses of vaccine to donate. America alone plans…

peru in peril

FOR MUCH of this century Peru stood out in Latin America as a success. The economy grew at an annual average rate of 5.6% between 2001 and 2016, while the share of those living below the national poverty line fell from above 60% to 21% over the same period. Inequality fell, too, as the incomes of people living in the Andes, long the poorest area, grew faster than the national average. Like Chile and Colombia, which also did well economically, Peru pursued free-market economic policies and export-led growth, eschewing the statist protectionism that has held back Argentina and Brazil. Progress has largely halted, first because of political conflicts that produced four presidents (and eight finance ministers) in five years. Then came the pandemic, which has killed 190,000 Peruvians and pushed 3m…

a new architecture

WHEN PEOPLE come to look back on Joe Biden’s presidency, they may, depending on events in the coming months, conclude that one of his most consequential economic achievements was to reverse a decades-long global boom in corporate tax-dodging. His administration’s call for an end to the “race to the bottom” has reinvigorated multilateral talks on rewriting international rules that encourage multinationals to funnel vast profits to tax havens. Two months after that call, America and other rich countries have agreed on a road map for reform. The deal paves the way for the biggest corporate-tax overhaul in a century. Mr Biden’s motives are not pure: he is driven less by principle than a desire to squeeze more out of American firms to finance his post-pandemic spending priorities. Nevertheless, the G7 countries’…