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Issue Brief

Feb 26, 2024

Western Balkans must pursue more competitive energy sectors

By Matthew Bryza

The EU needs to take steps to support more competition and efficiency in the energy sectors of Bulgaria and the Western Balkans to advance the energy transition and promote energy independence from Russia.

Energy Markets & Governance Energy Transitions

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

Stabilizing revenue will lead Kenya to greater prosperity

By Robert Mudida

Kenya aims to grow manufacturing and GDP via the African Continental Free Trade Area. Formalizing informal jobs stabilizes revenue. Expanding global value chains, especially in tourism, boosts growth. Institutional reform is key for lasting prosperity.

Africa East Africa

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

South Africa needs political change to meet economic demands

By Greg Mills

South Africa's future hinges on political changes, especially the potential shift to a coalition government in the 2024 election. Economic challenges, including rising debt, demand urgent reforms. Global alliances, notably with BRICS and China, affect trade dynamics, emphasizing the need for diversification.

Africa Elections

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

China’s authoritarian trend meets resistance in East Asia and the Pacific

By Kelley E. Currie

China's influence shapes political and economic dynamics in East Asia and the Pacific. Despite resistance, its practices hinder freedom across the region. Youth movements demand responsive systems. Weak institutions and challenges like inequality persist, requiring diversified economic strategies and strengthened democracies to navigate regional complexities.

China Democratic Transitions

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

China must spread its wealth to reach equality

By Johanna Kao

Despite phenomenal growth in GDP, Chinese people have seen only modest gains (if any) across a range of freedom and prosperity indices. The Chinese Communist Party has failed to share the benefits of the country’s upward economic trajectory equally among its citizens.

China Civil Society

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

Climate crisis fuels change in MENA region

By Rabah Arezki

The region faces economic and political transitions amid geopolitical risks, climate change, and energy market shifts. Escalating conflicts are exacerbating instability. Climate change poses existential threats, intensifying water crises and domestic tensions. Socioeconomic transformation will be vital to meet youth aspirations and tackle polarization.

Climate Change & Climate Action Economy & Business

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

EU’s future prosperity will be marked by war in Ukraine

By Simeon Djankov

The EU’s freedom and prosperity dynamics will be marked by the war in Ukraine. The indexes provoke philosophical reflection: Is Europe's prosperity dwindling due to an extensive social safety net? Is the strength of European integration declining with new members, while the strength of EU federalism diminishes?

Europe & Eurasia European Union

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

Sub-Saharan Africa grapples with development imperatives

By William Easterly

Sub-Saharan Africa confronts urgent development challenges, including the imperative for democratization and institution building, amid critical security concerns. With declining foreign support and China's Belt and Road Initiative rising, worries arise over debt and politicized financing. Despite potential through regional integration, diverse political interests and institutional weaknesses remain obstacles.

Africa Democratic Transitions

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

Russia will suffer decreases in every dimension of prosperity

By Konstantin Sonin

Over fifteen years, Russia's economy stagnated with low growth and persistent inequality. Challenges include minority rights restrictions, healthcare issues, and an educational crisis due to teacher exodus.

Europe & Eurasia Freedom and Prosperity

Freedom and Prosperity Around the World

Feb 26, 2024

Foreword: Creating another wave of democracy

By Daron Acemoglu

The best way to counter the current pernicious trends is to create another wave of democracy, similar to the one witnessed after the collapse of military dictatorships in Southern Europe in the 1970s. This requires reinstating democracy support, institutional trust, and empowering civil society appropriately.

Civil Society Democratic Transitions