Monthly Global Forecast |August 2020
Defence and Security
Ratko Mladic’s Appeal against Genocide Conviction Set for August
The Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals in The Hague announced that appeals in the case against the former Bosnian Serb Army commander Ratko Mladic will be heard on August 25 and 26. The UN court sentenced Mladic to life imprisonment in November 2017, finding him guilty of genocide in Srebrenica in 1995, the persecution of Bosniaks and Croats throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina, terrorising the population of Sarajevo during the siege of the city and taking UN peacekeepers hostage.
Australian Defence Force to secure headquarters with solar array
The Australian Defence Force’s Headquarters Joint Operations Command near Bungendore, just outside Canberra, is set to receive a 1.9MW solar array as part of extensive $31 million site upgrades to better facilitate cyber and space command. Construction on the 1.9MW solar array is set to begin in August, 2020.
Politics and Governance
Indian Prime Minister Modi to begin Ram temple construction on August 5
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will perform the ground-breaking ceremony for construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya at 12.30pm on August 5.
Ukrainian President introduces temporary visa-free regime for Chinese tourists
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky imposed a temporary visa-free regime for citizens of China who enter Ukraine as tourists. The temporary regime will be active from August 2020 till January 2021. The Chinese citizens who come to Ukraine as tourists will be able to stay in Ukraine without visas for 30 days within the 180-day period.
National Day of Action in Nigeria on August 5
The Coalition for Revolution has called on Nigerians to rise up and demand better governance from the country’s political leaders by participating in its National Day of Action on August 5. The event is in commemoration of the first anniversary of the #RevolutionNow campaign, which saw people across different parts of Nigeria on August 5, 2019 taking to the streets in peaceful demonstrations to ask for better leadership from the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Congress to move no-confidence motion against BJP-led government in Manipur
Congress will move no-confidence motion against BJP-led government in Manipur. The party has submitted the motion to the speaker. The Monsoon session of the Manipur Assembly will begin on August 10. Three-year- old BJP led government in Manipur was recently jolted as nine MLAs supporting the party have deserted the coalition.
COVID-19 peak expected late August in South Africa
Business lobby group, Business for South Africa (B4SA), has urged South Africans and businesses to continue with precautions in work and public life as the economic devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic rages on. B4SA said it expected the national COVID-19 infection rate to peak during August 2020, while daily mortalities will peak by late-August or early September.
New British Health and Care visa to launch on 4 August
The Home Office has released the first guidance on the new Health and Care visa for doctors, nurses and allied health professionals, including individuals working in the social care sector. The Health and Care visa will be available from 4 August 2020 and will fall under the Tier 2 (General) category.
Energy and Environment
Event on Climatological, Meteorological and Environmental factors in the COVID-19 pandemic
The international virtual symposium, which is scheduled to be held from 4-6 August, will help elucidate what is known, understood, and can be reliably predicted about environmental variables’ influence on the trajectory of the COVID-19 epidemic, from global, hemispheric, regional and local perspectives. Symposium outcomes will include a synthesis of the information presented and recommendations for further research at local to global scales.
The 6th International Conference on Water Resource and Environment
The 6th International Conference on Water Resource and Environment (WRE 2020) will be held online from August 23rd to 26th, 2020 in Tokyo, Japan. International Conference on Water Resource and Environment is an annually-held conference. It aims to provide a platform for professionals and specialists to present their latest findings, opinions and views to provide a forum to discuss the latest thinking by some of the leading scholars and experts of the world.
Trade and Economics
First COMSTECH Exhibition of AI and IoT
First COMSTECH Showcasing of Artificial Intelligence and IoT Products and Services: AI and IoT for Pakistan, which is to be held from 4-5 August at COMSTECH Secretariat Islamabad, is to foster interest in Science, Technology, and Innovation and to popularise the field of artificial intelligence among the youth of Pakistan, stimulating their interest in the sphere of innovation, and in high-tech areas of technology.
UAE petrol, diesel prices announced for August
The cost of filling up at the petrol pumps will stay the same in August across the UAE. Prices remain unchanged for the fourth month in a row. The prices, which already include the VAT rate of 5 per cent, have stayed consistent since April, when they fell from 2.25 dirhams, 2.16 and 2.04.
Indonesia’s economy to recover in August 2020: World Bank
Indonesia’s economy is expected to begin reopening and recovering in August this year despite the COVID-19 pandemic pressure, World Bank Country Director for Indonesia and Timor-Leste Satu Kahkonen said. The international financial institution predicted that Indonesia’s economy as a whole this year would not grow or grow by zero per cent, she said, adding it was in line with the World Bank’s projection that the global economy would experience contraction by up to 5.2 per cent in 2020, the worst recession since World War II.
Reserve Bank of India may go for further 25 bps rate cut in August policy meeting
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is likely to go for a minimum 25 basis points cut in key lending rate in the forthcoming monetary policy review in view of the pressing need to revive the coronavirus-hit economy. The Monetary Policy Committee, headed by RBI Governor, is scheduled to meet for three days beginning August 4 and will announce its decision on August 6.
The EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement Taking Effect from 1 August
The date has been set for the landmark EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement to take effect on 1 August 2020. The Agreement is anticipated to bring significant advantages for enterprises, employees and consumers in both the European Union (EU) and Vietnam. According to analysis carried out by the Government as well as the World Bank, Vietnam expects an increase in the country’s GDP to be 2,18 – 3,25% (years 2020 – 2023), 4,57 – 5,30% (years 2024 – 2028) and 7,07 – 7,72% (years 2029 – 2033). Concurrently, exports from Vietnam to EU are to rise 20% in 2020, the figure is to double in 2025. In addition, with the possibility of skilled labourers’ wage to rise by up to 12%, with salaries of common workers increasing by 13%, the Agreement can help lift around 800,000 people out of poverty by 2030.