Situation Reports

Can China’s Belt and Road Open Up Landlocked Laos?

cc Flickr Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, modified, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

As a 420 km high-speed railway nears completion, two Chinese-built highways have been given the green light. Will these projects open up Laos, or make it a crossing point on China’s Belt and Road?

China Tech Rout: Another Harbinger of US-China Decoupling?

The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited, Trade Lobby in 2007, cc WiNG, modified, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hong_Kong_Exchange_Trade_Lobby_2007.jpg

A mounting regulatory crackdown is resonating in China’s equity markets, with some US institutional investors looking for the exits.

Protests, Shortages amid Record Mideast Heatwave

GPM Iran-Iraq Water Stress - Aqueduct

A brutal heatwave is exacerbating resource shortages and fueling sectarian conflict in Iran and Iraq.

Why a 1955 Peace Treaty Bans Landlocked Austria from Deploying Submarines

Description: A photograph of the German WWI U-boat UB 14 on the surface of the Black Sea. The submarine's crew is gathered around the tower. Source: Rainer Kolbicz (Ed.), WWI U-boats: UB 14, uboat.net, www.uboat.net/wwi/boats/index.html?boat=UB+14, cc SMU Central University, modified, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:German_U-boat_UB_14_with_its_crew.jpg

Tracing the historical origins of one particularly bizarre postwar restriction.

Strategic Commodities 2.0: Global Tin Supply & Demand

cc modified, https://www.peakpx.com/569687/assorted-tin-cans,

Green technologies are expected to create a surge in global tin demand, but Western companies may encounter supply challenges amid the outsize market weight of Asian producers.

Regulatory Hammer Comes Down on China’s Didi

cc Flickr Fuzzy Gerdes, modified, https://flickr.com/photos/fuzzy/5386855886/in/photolist-9d23zC-4EgftN-RvmqT8-9Yvhxe-2korjUb-4bt3sD-2kHgWA8-7DtCkj-CqdUZ-2isGuoZ-2iJdrD6-ceYiiA-4WWuyN-4Xy9GQ-4nwgac-2ki2fYj-2khmnTa-XQkkU3-2khJDUt-2kDQQ82-2iovYaD-9y3fEv-4HCnKy-4nB84N-dRP72e-2j6KXVB-7g3YXV-5dRQ1K-7PgG2P-bMfbvX-2i1SZU-dRUFDo-rZ2Pw-dRUFNu-7TazVA-2kLPPy-76spMi-2kYsNM7-2kYsNJX-DpnPn-2kYkfJM-BFjRDQ-6P19Ao-axskD1-7nzHJh-4ASh2S-NHpDru-qnimPg-k6c77-4EhjYL

Early reports suggest record fines and strict data controls, freezing out future US-based listings by Chinese tech companies.

US and Germany Reach a Deal on Nord Stream 2

Nordstream2-Header

Ultimately, this zero-sum decision between two US allies was hardly a Sophie’s choice.

Supply Pinch Sustains Record Iron Prices

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Moves by Beijing to cool iron prices can only go so far against a backdrop of lingering supply shortfalls.

Amid Renewed Protests, Thai Opposition Pushes for Constitutional Change

The protests on August 16, 2020 in a large demonstration organized under the Free Youth umbrella (Thai: เยาวชนปลดแอก; RTGS: yaowachon plot aek) at the Democracy Monument in Bangkok., cc Supanut Arunoprayote, modified, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?sort=last_edit_desc&search=bangkok+protest+filetype%3Abitmap&title=Special%3ASearch&profile=advanced&fulltext=1&advancedSearch-current=%7B%22fields%22%3A%7B%22filetype%22%3A%22bitmap%22%7D%7D&ns0=1&ns6=1&ns14=1#/media/File:Protest_in_2020_Democracy_Monument_(I).jpg

Opponents of the ruling Palang Pracharath Party are pushing to amend Thailand’s 2017 constitution, which kept Junta chief Prayuth Chan-ocha in power. A military-appointed Senate stands in their way.

Record Northwest Drought Imperils US Wheat Crop

cc Flickr USDA NRCS Montana, modified, https://flickr.com/photos/160831427@N06/38143676574/in/photolist-217Cj97-XXcW1d-9ep8PT-FMtEbg-2jt3ECZ-LeFTwA-YLbMAx-CzJNJP-E6x5aW-2jEQTPY-2mbU4do-d8Kvyo-2jq1iBi-Kzjv1F-w5cau-8yG3jy-2h9A7Fo-nVJzCb-8piTZq-5iKn93-8poAKV-58utHf-81JrDw-6bPs36-9TmzQc-NYHPd9-59tYWQ-XSn91S-G3XVxf-2jqncK5-cWE6cy-2gSyWAb-cWE62d-nXpmjG-cWE5oJ-Aea55-cWE5Qj-cWE5CE-kyac7-i3mYp-mGyfT-mGy91-6Ftb2U-6Fp5gn-adG7cw-wxydYk-bVVY2U-8pM4Eb-bdkvDH-2a5UxUt

Wheat farmers in Washington, Montana, and Idaho stand to suffer as global prices tick upward on supply concerns.

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