China

Breaking BRICS: More Differences Than Similarities?

This month brings the tenth summit of the fast-growing BRICs nations – Brazil, Russia, India, and China and South Africa. But does the label still hold given the countries’ starkly different political and economic realities? Almost 17 years after Goldman Sachs coined the term “BRICs” for Brazil, Russia, India, and China, and later South Africa, […]

How to Boost East African Economies?

This month’s African Union Summit is poised to probe widespread corruption but a closer look at East Africa also reveals other pressing issues, not least rising political uncertainty, economic instability and violence. With the 31st African Union Summit around the corner, the African Development Bank recently underscored its support for East Africa’s bid for industrialization. […]

Money Can’t Buy You Love – but Influence, Apparently

China under Xi Jinping is deeply concerned with its global status and standing and aims to regain its deserved place on the global stage. This has dramatic consequences not only for China but for the rest of the world. One of the most important developments with regards to China has been the bold departure from […]

Moon Jae-in at a rally in Seoul, by Jee Su Na, via flickr.com, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Is South Korea’s New President up to the Job?

Former human-rights attorney Moon Jae-in has won the South Korean presidential elections. His supporters expect above all a fight against cronyism and fundamental economic reforms. Relations with neighbors and allies are tense. On Wednesday, Moon Jae-in was sworn in for a five-year term as South Korea’s president. Winning 41 percent of the votes in Tuesday’s […]

Construction workers at project construction site

Investing in Democracy

Democratically governed countries usually offer better conditions for long-term foreign investment than autocratic ones – particularly more stability, greater legal certainty and more efficient governance. Thus, from a company perspective, investing in democracies does not only feel right, it is also the more rational choice. The Chinese government is losing out – big time – […]

Taipei Skyline

And the winner is … Taiwan

Ranking at the top of the BTI Status Index, Taiwan’s transformation from an authoritarian developing country to a thriving democracy and market economy deserves special attention. What are the recipes for the island state’s political and economic success? Taiwan is the Status Index top performer among the 129 countries surveyed in the 2016 edition of […]

President of South Africa Jacob Zuma and President of China Xi Jinping at the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) in Sandton, Johannesburg

Buyer Beware: China’s Risky Commodity Investments

A few years ago, Western countries feared that China’s forays into Africa would cut them off from commodities. In light of current low prices it looks as if China made a mistake when it secured access to resources through risky investments. What do countries like Afghanistan, Angola, Burundi, Cambodia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea […]

Rubble-strewn streets of Chautara in central Nepal May 2015 © IOM 2015 via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Nepal’s Mammoth Tasks after the Earthquake

The recent earthquake has dealt a serious blow to Nepal’s fragile economy and development. What priorities must the government set in order to revitalize the country and prepare it better for future catastrophes? The world has watched helplessly in April and May as heart-wrenching images stream in from Nepal. An estimated 8,500 people were killed […]

Xi Jinping, President of China

“It Has Become More Difficult to be Corrupt in China”

BTI Blog speaks with China expert Christian Göbel about Xi Jinping’s anticorruption campaign and how it is helping transform China from collectivist one-party rule to a one-person authoritarian system. BTI Blog: In Transparency International’s latest Corruption Perception Index (CPI), China is among the countries with the largest decline in points, despite a high profile anti-corruption […]

Protests against a new trade agreement between Taiwan and China, Taipei, March 2014 © Tenz1225 via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Walking the Line of Rapprochement

After more than six decades of conflict over the political status of Taiwan, Beijing and Taipei are normalizing their relations. Yet, how much Chinese influence can the island state’s democracy tolerate? On 25 June 2014, for the first time in over 60 years, China sent a ministerial-level figure on an official visit to Taiwan. Zhang Zhijun, head […]