Geopolitical Risk Tracker >> EMEA Wednesdays




EU ambassador to US: UK doesn’t understand Brexit ‘As Paul Simon said, there are 50 ways to leave your lover. I don’t know if there are 50 ways to Brexit.’

Is Productivity Growth Becoming Irrelevant? As the Nobel laureate economist Robert Solow noted in 1987, computers are “everywhere but in the productivity statistics.” Since then, the so-called productivity paradox has become ever more striking. -Project Syndicate


NATO’s Blind Spot: Getting to “Honest Defense” -War on the Rocks

The Politics of Germany’s External Surplus The debate about global macroeconomic imbalances is increasingly focusing on Germany’s current-account surplus and economic policy. Despite the vitality of the German economic engine, and the role it plays in fueling growth and maintaining stability in the eurozone, criticism of the country’s massive external surplus is mounting. -Project Syndicate

The Macron effect: France now world's top 'soft power' thanks to president, cuisine and culture France has overtaken the US and Britain to be ranked the country with the most non-military global influence. The annual Soft Power 30 index links polling and data to measure a country's global impact. -DW

Italy’s fading 5Stars lash out on migration Party leader says Matteo Renzi struck deal with Brussels to take in migrants in exchange for budget leniency. -Politico 

Leaked UK memo accuses Paris of wanting to sink City of London -France24

UK and EU broach thorny issue of post-Brexit trade rules Officially, trade relations are not on the agenda of U.K.-EU discussions this week.

The Case for an EU-Ukraine Customs Union -Project Syndicate


Trump, Putin held a second, undisclosed meeting at G20 summit -Reuters

The Real Colluder With Russia Isn't Trump -- It's Germany But Germany, the self-declared paragon of European values, finds itself fighting an isolated battle to give Putin’s rogue state its political objectives for the benefit of Germany, Inc. -Forbes



Trump’s Gift to Putin in the Mideast Over the past two months, even as American-trained forces were driving Islamic State insurgents out of the major Iraqi city of Mosul, the war next door in Syria was taking a dangerous but little-remarked turn — one far more favorable for Russia’s ambitions to regain a position of broad influence in the Middle East. -NYT

With U.S. scholar’s conviction, power struggle escalates between Iran’s president and hard-liners -The Washington Post

US imposes new sanctions against Iran despite it meeting terms of nuclear deal The Trump administration has sanctioned 18 individuals and entities alleged to have supported Iran's ballistic missile program. A day earlier, the US affirmed that Iran was complying with its nuclear agreement. -DW

UAE orchestrated hacking of Qatari government sites, sparking regional upheaval, according to U.S. intelligence officials -The Washington Post


Deadly shooting erupts at military bases in Ivory Coast -France24

China has opened a military base in Djibouti. The geopolitics of the Middle East will never be the same again Last week, China sent an unmistakable message that its role in the world is changing -The National



G20 riots to cost insurers €12 million About a third of the money will be spent to compensate car owners. Activists set cars alight and clashed with police, leaving nearly 200 officers injured, as world leaders met in the northern German city.

Facebook Removes Only A Fraction Of Hate Groups Flagged By Activists -Forbes

Report confirms Brexit’s boomerang logic on data protection A U.K. parliamentary committee report backs the view that Brexit cannot constitute a “clean break” in data protection law terms with the European Union. Au contraire. The U.K. will likely have to continue mirroring EU data protection rules encore et encore, i.e. after it’s left the room where those rules are made and debated. -Tech Crunch

READ THE REPORT HERE >> European Union Committee Brexit: the EU data protection package -UK Parliament

British Land's Brexit Bet Britain's commercial property market is at the epicenter of the Brexit tremor. -Bloomberg Gadfly

STATION F>> On Thursday evening, the world’s biggest startup campus officially opened. Around 3,000 people are going to work in this huge building. TechCrunch walked around the building with the President of France Emmanuel Macron and other officials. -Tech Crunch

Kaspersky Lab Has Been Working With Russian Intelligence -Bloomberg

Court to decide the future of diesel cars in Germany This week a German court will hear arguments about how much air pollution cities have to accept from diesel cars. Will they need to be retrofitted or simply banned? No matter what happens change won't be fast. -DW

Saudi Arabian police arrest woman for miniskirt Snapchat video Saudi social media was thrown into a dizzying spin after a woman donned a miniskirt in a Snapchat video. Police arrested the woman and said she confessed to visiting an historic site with her male guardian. -DW

Ivanhoe's Congo Success Follows Deals With Kabila's Brother -Bloomberg


Geopolitics May Yet Ruin $4 Billion Bond Deal for Russia in 2017 Konstantin Vyshkovsky has shown he can dodge sanctions imposed against Russia by pulling off three Eurobond sales in just over a year. But the Finance Ministry’s debt chief may yet meet his match as the country looks to swap $4 billion of old foreign bonds for new ones. -Bloomberg

Sterling drops after low inflation figures Sterling fell by around half a cent against the U.S. dollar on Tuesday after British inflation unexpectedly slowed for the first time since October last year, dampening expectations of a rate increase this year. -Reuters

Will OPEC Deal Work? Major oil producers — members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC — are meeting in Russia on July 24 to monitor their compliance to a deal aimed at curtailing production and rebalancing the oil market. -Eurasia Review

West, Russia battle for Balkans gas corridors -AFP