Current geopolitical tensions between China and the United States have been compared to the Cold War. But the modern-day rivalry differs from that of the US and Soviet Union, not least of all in terms of how other countries have responded. This column argues that in today’s context, a given state is less likely to side directly with either China or the US, and is instead able to benefit economically from courting both superpowers. But while not as deeply entrenched as in the 20th century, the schism between the US and China, as well as the way the international community has reacted, remains harmful to the wider global economy – de-escalation is needed urgently.
Rising food prices are making it difficult for families to put meals on the table. Inflation, especially when it stems from food prices, hits the poorest groups hardest. Across the MENA region, food insecurity has been rising over recent decades. As well as having dire immediate consequences, even temporary increases in food prices can cause long-term irreversible damages, especially to children. This column argues that the rise in food prices due to the war in Ukraine may have altered the destinies of thousands of children in the MENA region, setting them on paths to limited prosperity.
Job creation is an indicator of healthy economic growth. But in Egypt, despite impressive macroeconomic resilience that helped the country navigate the Covid-19 pandemic, several long-run structural weaknesses undermine the development of new jobs, even during periods of promising growth. This column argues that without a renewed targeted focus on structural change in the Egyptian labour market, inclusive growth will remain out of reach.