Geopolitical Risk Tracker >> EMEA Wednesdays

GEOPOLITICAL RISK + GLOBAL MARKETS

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

GLOBAL RISK

'We are in a geopolitical environment that is extremely dangerous for Europeans' The leaders of France and Germany must use the window of opportunity that opens up after elections in both countries to inject new momentum into their single currency project or risk its failure -Business Insider

A Dramatic Comeback for Europe The Dutch are famous for building dykes that hold back the tides and storms sweeping across the Atlantic. Have the Dutch now done it again, holding back the wave of populist politics that seemed to be threatening Europe after last year’s Brexit referendum and Donald Trump’s victory in the United States? -Project Syndicate

EUROPE RISK

Tillerson’s message to NATO: Show Trump the money Secretary of State will make his first trip to the alliance’s headquarters in Brussels this week. -Politico.eu

BACK TO THE FORTRESS - GLOBAL BRITAIN SAYS CHEERIO TO EUROPE >> Article 50: May signs letter that will trigger Brexit Giving official notice under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, it will be delivered to European Council president Donald Tusk on Wednesday. -BBC

Scottish Parliament backs referendum call MSPs voted by 69 to 59 in favour of seeking permission for a referendum before the UK leaves the EU. -BBC

France’s Extraordinary Election Sixty years after the signing of the Treaty of Rome, France is poised to hold an election that could make or break the European Union. -Project Syndicate

Economists See Macron Win in France Most Positive for Europe Economists overwhelmingly expect Emmanuel Macron to become the next President of France and see its relationship with the EU improving the most of any other policy if he’s elected -Bloomberg

Populist Italian marriage to give Brussels heartburn 5Star Movement may join forces with the far-right Northern League to govern. Italy’s next government could see a populist alliance between the 5Star Movement and the Northern League that if consummated would turn Italian and European politics on their heads. -Politico.eu

One constant in Italian politics = the opposite of cohesion

UK manufacturers: trade deal with EU crucial A leading association of British manufacturers has told the country's prime minister that a Brexit without a new trade deal with the EU would be a disaster as firms would have to bear the brunt of future barriers. -DW

Can Europe “Be Open But Not Stupid” on Foreign Acquisitions by China? Like the United States, the European Union (EU) and its member states are concerned about potential security threats posed by foreign acquisition of firms, especially by Chinese investors, in sensitive sectors of the economy. -PIIE

Moran is a sage voice on the risks + rhetoric associated with foreign direct investment

OFF THE SHELF >> Read - Philippe Le Corre’s “China’s Offensive in Europe”

RUSSIA RISK

Anti-corruption demonstrations sweep across Russia The protests show opposition leader Alexei Navalny remains a force -The Economist

Russia jails protests leader Alexei Navalny -BBC

What Russia's Latest Protests Mean for Putin After the largest demonstrations in years erupted across the country on Sunday, the Kremlin is fighting back. -The Atlantic

MIDDLE EAST RISK

Turmoil and terrorism breed economic uncertainty for Turkey International concerns about political uncertainty, as well as a drive to increase Islam's place in public life, are also contributing to the economy's decline -PBS Newshour (video)

AFRICA RISK

Brexit as an opportunity for Africa? As British Prime Minister Theresa May is slated to trigger formal Brexit talks, African nations are gearing up for negotiations of their own. But it's not all doom and gloom since Brexit could work in Africa's favor. -DW

EMEA || GLOBAL MARKETS IMPACT + OPPORTUNITY

GLOBAL BUSINESS

EU clears Dow-DuPont chemicals mega-merger US firms Dow Chemical and DuPont have gained EU antitrust approval for their planned merger, on condition that they sell assets. -DW

ANTI-TRUSTED >> Deutsche Boerse, LSE merger plans rejected by EU regulators -Reuters

EU nations vote against GM crops A majority of EU nations voted against genetically modified corn during a meeting of the EU appeals committee. However, that was not enough to stop GM cultivation. The decision now rests with the Commission. -DW

UK government renews calls for WhatsApp backdoor after London attack -The Verge

Uber to end services in Denmark after less than three years Uber has faced headwinds since its app went online in Denmark in November 2014 as local taxi driver unions, companies and politicians complained that Uber posed unfair competition by not meeting legal standards required for established taxi firms. -Reuters

Qatar announces £5bn UK investment One of the largest investors in the UK has committed £5bn of new money to invest in transport, property and digital technology. -BBC

Major China-Africa infrastructure cooperation projects -Xinhua

Lobito-Luau railway in Angola

Addis Ababa Light Rail Transit (AA-LRT) in Ethiopia

Kigamboni Bridge in Tanzania

Abuja-Kaduna railway in Nigeria

Ethio-Djibouti railway

Tanzania-Zambia railway

Pointe Noire special economic zone

Garissa power plant

ANOTHER READ>> “China’s Continent” -French

GLOBAL MACRO

Eurozone growth nears six-year high, survey data suggests -BBC

Why are American bond yields higher than Europe’s? It is no longer a simple matter of risk and reward So investors look at a combination of future central bank policy; inflation and growth rates; political risk; and the balance of supply and demand in the private sector. -The Economist

Global stocks slip, sterling steadies as Brexit becomes real -Reuters

BUYING OPPORTUNITY - MORE SA PRODUCE ON US SHELVES? >> Rand drops as Zuma recalls South Africa's finance minister South African President Jacob Zuma has ordered Finance Minister Gordhan to return from an overseas trip. The recall spooked foreign exchange markets and fueled speculation about a cabinet reshuffle. -DW

War-Ravaged South Sudan Draws $500 Million Oranto Oil Bet -Bloomberg