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The Economist Continental Europe Edition

The Economist Continental Europe Edition December 3, 2016

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.

Страна:
United Kingdom
Язык:
English
Издатель:
The Economist Newspaper Limited - Europe
Периодичность:
Weekly
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8 мин.
the world this week

Politics Fidel Castro, who led a revolution in Cuba and ruled as a communist dictator for 47 years, died at the age of 90. He was an unyielding antagonist of the United States, which tried many times to assassinate him. In 1962 Mr Castro helped bring the world to the brink of nuclear war by inviting the Soviet Union to station missiles in Cuba. His brother, Raúl, formally replaced him as president in 2008, but he was the symbolic leader of the Latin American far left until his death. Colombia’s congress ratified a revised peace agreement with the FARC, an insurgent group with which the government has been at war for 52 years. Legislators opposed to the deal walked out before the vote. Colombians rejected the original agreement in a plebiscite in…

5 мин.
the mighty dollar

THE world’s most important currency is flexing its muscles. In the three weeks following Donald Trump’s victory in America’s presidential elections, the dollar had one of its sharpest rises ever against a basket of rich-country peers. It is now 40% above its lows in 2011. It has strengthened relative to emerging-market currencies, too. The yuan has fallen to its lowest level against the dollar since 2008; anxious Chinese officials are said to be pondering tighter restrictions on foreign takeovers by domestic firms to stem the downward pressure. India, which has troubles of its own making (see separate leader), has seen its currency reach an all-time low against the greenback. Other Asian currencies have plunged to depths not seen since the financial crisis of1997-98. The dollar has been gradually gaining strength for…

5 мин.
modi’s bungle

INDIA is not the first country to introduce abrupt, drastic reform of its currency. But the precedents—including Burma in 1987, the former Soviet Union in 1991 and North Korea in 2009—are not encouraging. Burma erupted in revolt, the Soviet Union disintegrated and North Koreans went hungry. All the more reason for Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister, to prepare the ground before the surprise announcement on November 8th that he would withdraw the two highest-denomination banknotes (the 500-rupee and 1,000-rupee, worth about $7.30 and $14.60). Yet he did not and the result is a bungle that, even if it does achieve its stated aims, will cause unnecessary harm. Shops stopped accepting the old notes at once. Holders have until the end of the year to deposit them in banks or swap them,…

3 мин.
devos woman

FOR those looking for encouraging signs about what a Trump administration might accomplish, the nomination of Betsy DeVos as education secretary deserves a cautious welcome. The welcome is because giving parents choice over where their children are educated is a good thing. The caution because there have been enough failures in school reform to suggest that promising ideas can be discredited if done badly. Both Republicans and Democrats suffer from blind spots on education reform. On the left there is a tendency to ignore bad public schools, pander to unions and indulge underperforming teachers. On the right the assumption is often that private is always better and that, once a voucher scheme has been set up, the work of school reform is done. The evidence suggests that what happens in the…

3 мин.
park somewhere else

MANY members of the party of South Korea’s president, Park Geun-hye, want it. So does the opposition, which controls South Korea’s parliament. So do most ordinary Koreans: they have been marching for it by the millions. Even Ms Park says she is ready to do it. So why has she not yet resigned? Ms Park is hopelessly mired in an ever-deepening influence-peddling scandal (see page 41). She admits that she shared too much information about affairs of state with a close confidante, Choi Soon-sil, including advance drafts of many of her speeches. Ms Choi, prosecutors say, went on to use her clout with the president to extort money and favours from big companies and other organisations. Ms Park, the prosecutors allege, was an active participant in this racket, ordering her aides…

3 мин.
after fidel

FIDEL CASTRO was many things to many people (see pages 18-20). As Cuba mourns him, his fans offer praise for how he stood up to the United States in the name of Cuban independence and provided world-class health care and education to poorer Cubans. But his achievements were outweighed by his drab legacy. Much of that human capital was wasted by his one-party system, police state and the stagnant, centrally planned economy. Cubans say Mr Castro was “like a father “ to them. They are right: he infantilised a nation. Anyone with initiative found ways to leave for exile abroad. This is the baleful legacy that Raúl Castro, Fidel’s younger brother and successor as president since 2008, must deal with. He has been trying to reform the economy, allowing small businesses,…