Event Recaps

On March 20, 2018, the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center hosted Jigar Shah, Co-founder and President of Generate Capital, Inc, and Varun Sivaram, Philip D. Reed Fellow for Science and Technology at the Council on Foreign Relations, to discuss the the role of American leadership and the future of solar energy. David Livingston made opening remarks and introduced Sivaram and Shah, and Ellen Scholl moderated the discussion. Livingston and Scholl are Deputy Directors of the Global Energy Center.

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On Thursday, March 15, 2018, the Atlantic Council's Global Business and Economics program hosted a lunch discussion on the EU-UK-US Trade Triangle future with Liam Fox, the UK Secretary of State for International Trade. The private event was part of the Eurogrowth initiative.

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Once the country’s lifeline, Venezuela’s oil industry has been decimated, the product of decades of neglect and mismanagement. As Venezuela’s economic and humanitarian crisis worsens and political conditions deteriorate ahead of upcoming presidential elections, the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, in partnership with the Global Energy Center and Eurasia Center, hosted a timely conversation on March 13, 2018 on the future of Venezuela’s oil industry and the implications of the entrance of foreign actors into the space. The event marked the launch of The Collapse of the Venezuelan Oil Industry and its Global Consequences, a new policy brief by Francisco Monaldi, Atlantic Council author and fellow in Latin American Energy Policy at Rice University’s Baker Institute. The brief details what’s ahead for the crisis-ridden country and its energy industry. 

The panel discussion, moderated by Center Director Jason Marczak, convened Monaldi; David Goldwyn, chair of the Atlantic Council Energy Advisory Group and senior fellow in the Latin America Center; Rebecca Chávez, former deputy assistant secretary of defense for Western Hemisphere Affairs at the US Department of Defense; Kerry Contini, partner at Baker McKenzie’s Outbound Trade Practice Group; and David Smolansky, former mayor of El Hatillo Municipality in Venezuela and deputy secretary general of Voluntad Popular. 

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Iran’s political elite is “graying” and the average age of its members exceeds 55 in the cabinet and 65 in clerical-led institutions, according to Mehrzad Boroujerdi, a professor of political science at Syracuse University and co-author of an upcoming new book, Post-Revolutionary Iran: A Handbook.

Boroujerdi, who spoke March 12 at an event hosted by the Atlantic Council’s Future of Iran initiative, said the median age in the cabinet of President Hassan Rouhani is 57 – compared to 38 in cabinets just following the 1979 Islamic revolution. The average age of members of the Guardian Council, a cleric-led body that vets all candidates for elected office, is 66 and the figure for the Assembly of Experts – clerics who nominally supervise Iran’s Supreme Leader – is 68. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is 78.

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On Friday, March 9, the Atlantic Council’s Global Business and Economics Program, in cooperation with Georgetown University’s Institute of International Economic Law hosted a conference on Sanctions in the Trump Era – One Year In. The event was hosted in the context of the Global Business & Economics Program’s Economic Sanctions Initiative and focused on best practices of using sanctions as a foreign policy tool.

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On Thursday, March 8, the Atlantic Council’s Sudan Task Force launched three new issue briefs that make recommendations for the next phase of a measured reengagement strategy for the United States with the Republic of the Sudan. The papers covered three critical, related areas: governance and political reform; economic reform and impediments to investment; and prospects for greater cultural engagement.

Dr. J. Peter Pham, Atlantic Council vice president and Africa Center director, welcomed guests and introduced the new papers, which came out of a task force delegation to Sudan in January 2018, the third such visit in two years.

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Kentaro Sonoura
In November 2017, when President Trump visited Japan, Prime Minister Abe and President Trump agreed to work together to promote peace and prosperity in the region by developing the Indo-Pacific as free and open. In addition, particularly after President Trump gave a speech at the APEC CEO Summit in Da Nang, Vietnam, on November 10th, the concept of a "free and open Indo-Pacific" moved squarely into the spotlight and became a priority for policy makers of the United States and Japan. The two countries are about to initiate the process of elaborating this concept, and much work lies ahead, including how to coordinate their focus and approach, how to divide their roles, and how to conduct outreach to allies and partners.

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On Wednesday, March 7, the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center hosted a roundtable for African ambassadors with Ms. Dana Benvenisti-Gabay, Director for Regional Security and Counter Terrorism at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Israel.

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On Monday March 5th, at S&P Global Platts NYC headquarters, the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center and Global Energy Center, in partnership with HSBC, hosted an event titled “A Rising China’s Impact on Global Energy and the Implications for the United States,” with former US Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez. The event launched the Atlantic Council’s latest report, China, Oil, and Latin America: Myth vs. Reality. The event kicked off with the Director of the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, Jason Marczak, providing his insight into the changing geopolitics between China, Latin America, and the United States. He noted that China’s president will now likely rule China for quite some time, and how there has been a sharp focus by China on strengthening relations with Latin America, including China’s recent invitation for Latin America to join its Belt and Road Initiative. Next, HSBC’s Vice Chairman of Latin America Advisory, Andres Rojo, gave his latest thoughts on Latin America becoming an exciting and dynamic region and on the increasing complementarity of the China – Latin America relationship.

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On Monday, March 5, the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center hosted a roundtable with Brigadier General Oumar Dao, military chief of staff to the President of the Republic of Mali, and the Honorable Karim Keïta, chairman of the National Commission for Defense, Security, and Civil Protection of the National Assembly of the Republic of Mali.

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