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The Economist Continental Europe Edition

The Economist Continental Europe Edition 03/24/2018

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.

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The Economist Newspaper Limited - Europe
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8 мин.
the world this week

Politics Xi Jinping tightened his grip on power in China by promoting allies to top government jobs. Wang Qishan, who has led Mr Xi’s crackdown on corruption, was made vice-president, a hitherto ceremonial position that may now be beefed up to oversee relations with America. Liu He, Mr Xi’s economic adviser, was named as one of four deputy prime ministers and given the brief of supervising the People’s Bank of China and other regulatory bodies. The PBOC, in turn, will be headed by Yi Gang, another new appointment, who, like Mr Liu, has studied in America. China’s aircraft-carrier entered the Taiwan Strait again. This was probably as a show of defiance to America, which has angered Beijing by passing a law that encourages contacts between American and Taiwanese officials. Taiwanese ships tracked…

5 мин.
epic fail

LAST year the idea took hold that Mark Zuckerberg might run for president in 2020 and seek to lead the world’s most powerful country. Today, Face-book’s founder is fighting to show that he is capable of leading the world’s eighth-biggest listed company or that any of its 2.1bn users should trust it. News that Cambridge Analytica (CA), a firm linked to President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, got data on 50m Face-book users in dubious, possibly illegal, ways has lit a firestorm (see United States section). Mr Zuckerberg took five days to reply and, when he did, he conceded that Facebook had let its users down in the past but seemed not to have grasped that its business faces a wider crisis of confidence. After months of talk about propaganda and fake…

3 мин.
no choice

THE election in Egypt, which begins on March 26th, will have two candidates. One is Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, the president, an ex-military man who seized power in a coup in 2013. The other is Moussa Mustafa Moussa, whose party fawningly supports Mr Sisi and who refuses to take part in a debate with the president because that would be disrespectful (see Middle East & Africa section). The election, in other words, is a farce. Why, then, should Egyptians bother to vote? Mr Sisi’s big claim is that he has restored order. In 2011 mass protests led to the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak, a dreary despot. The next year Egyptians elected Muhammad Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, who tried to grab dictatorial powers and put his Islamist chums in charge of practically everything.…

3 мин.
faster drug approvals

REGULATORS can be both a help and a hindrance to the medical industry. A strong regulator increases confidence in drugs and devices, reassuring payers and patients alike. That explains why the Chinese drugs regulator recently adopted tougher standards. Yet rules can also impose too great a burden on firms, slowing innovation and reducing competition. The head of America’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Scott Gottlieb, has spent his first year in office tilting the balance away from rulemaking and towards efficiency. Some criticise Mr Gottlieb, who once worked in the industry, for still being its accomplice. Instead, he should be applauded. Nobody expects the FDA to solve America’s messed-up healthcare system, but its goal—of making it cheaper and easier for promising drugs to reach patients—is a step in the right direction…

3 мин.
now wash your hands

FOR adventurous travellers, it is merely an embarrassing nuisance. But among poor people diarrhoea is a killer. As many as half a million children are thought to die every year from enteric diseases, including cholera and dysentery. Repeated infections also weaken them, laying them open to attack from other killers such as pneumonia. Diarrhoea can even change a population’s appearance. One reason Indian children are shorter than sub-Saharan African children from families of similar means is that they fall sick more often. So it is delightful to report that one of Asia’s poorest countries, Bangladesh, is making huge progress against this scourge (see Asia section). In one part of the country with particularly good data, deaths from diarrhoea and other enteric diseases have fallen by 90% in the past two decades.…

5 мин.
the struggle for russia

THE ballot-stuffing, blatant and in full view of the cameras, only underlined Vladimir Putin’s impunity. The official result on March 18th gave him 77% of the vote, on a turnout of almost 70%. But the unofficial one would not have been very different. The election was not a genuine exercise of choice so much as a ritual acknowledgment of who holds power. After 18 years, Mr Putin is not just the president but the tsar. As important as last weekend’s vote, however, is the struggle to come. That will be over the future of Russia. And, as impregnable as Mr Putin looks, it begins today. The gun has fired Mr Putin cannot legally run again for president in 2024. Drawing on a mix of persuasion and brutal repression, he could force through changes…