Monthly Global Forecast | December 2021

Politics and Governance

Summit for Democracy to be held on 9-10 December 2021

President Biden will host the Summit for Democracy virtually. The summit will include leaders from both government and private sector to discuss the current opportunities and threats to democracy. It will call upon the leaders to make individual and collective efforts to uphold democracy and fight for human rights on national and international fronts. It will allow the United States (US) to engage with different actors who are crucial for the renewal of global democracy. It will also amplify the strengths and flexibility of democracy to recognise its drawbacks and work on them. The summit will include the themes of fighting corruption, defending against authoritarianism and respecting human rights. Along with India, Pakistan and Iraq are also among the 110 countries that are invited to the Summit.

Gambian presidential elections will be on 4 December 2021

Gambians will decide the next president among five contenders who will run to unseat the current president, Adama Barrow. The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) finalised these five candidates after disqualifying 15 others who failed to meet the constitutional requirements. This will be the first presidential election since 2017 when Yahya Jammeh, a long-time ruler of Gambia, refused to accept the election results, which led to his departure from the country after a six-week deadlock. The final candidates who will be competing for the position include; Adamma Barrow (the current president who will be running for a second term), Ousainou Darboe (leader of the United Democratic Party), Mama Kandeh (the Gambia Democratic Congress), Halifa Sallah (People’s Democratic Organisation for Independence and Socialism), Essa Mbye Faal (Independent) and Abdoulie Ebrima Jammeh (Independent).

Presidential and parliamentary elections in Libya will be conducted on 24 December 2021

A conference hosted by French President Emmanuel Macron was held in Paris regarding the December elections in Libya. Leaders of many states, including the US, Germany, Italy, Egypt and Libya, participated in this conference. Everyone agreed on the importance of holding these elections and threatened sanctions against anyone who might try to derail the process. Since the overthrow of dictator Moammar Gadhafi, supported militarily by NATO in 2011, the country has been in chaos. The UN also sees these elections as a benchmark for peace and stability in the country. After the conference, a statement was issued calling in  “all Libyan stakeholders to mobilise resolutely in favor of the organisation of free, fair, inclusive and credible presidential and legislative elections on 24 December, 2021.(sic)” The expected candidates to run for the elections are;  Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh, Retired Major General Khalifa Haftar, a former interior minister Fathi Bashagha, the head of Peace and Prosperity Party Muhammad Khaled Abdullah Al-Ghweil, a former Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zaidan, the former Minister of Education, Othman Abdel Jalil, Aref Al-Nayed, Fathi Benchtwan, and Ismail Al-Shtiwi.

Defence and Security

14th CDCA Defense Summit to be held from 7-9 December 2021 in North Charlestown, SC

The 14th Charleston Defense Contractors Association Defense Summit will bring together approximately 1400 government, military and industry leaders and academicians to discuss ideas and propose innovative solutions to the present and upcoming digital national defence challenges. The summit will offer opportunities to all the representatives to engage in a mutual partnership to achieve an unmatched National Defense digital edge. It will be an in-person meeting, and the participants will be required to comply with the COVID-19 preventive measures.

DoDIIS Worldwide Conference in Phoenix, Arizona, to be conducted from 5-8 December 2021

Department of Defense Intelligence Information System (DODIIS) Worldwide Conference will bring together different departments including security, intelligence, academia, and industry to discuss “Foresight 20/20: Building a New Digital Ecosystem.” It will focus on urgent needs to discover and innovate new solutions to sustain dominance over the rivals and call for collaborations and partnerships among nations. The conference will also provide opportunities to share experience, engage with experts and presentations of technical nature.

Energy and Environment

East Asian Seas Congress will be held virtually from 1-2 December 2021

The theme this year will be “Charting a New Decade of HOPE (Healthy Oceans, People and Economies)”. The Partnerships in Environment Management for the Seas of East Asia (PEMSEA) will organise the event while the Government of Cambodia will be hosting it. It will discuss the progress and problems faced in implementing the Sustainable Development Strategy for the Seas of East Asia (SDS-SEA) at local and global levels. It will furnish a guide regarding transformative blue solutions for the upcoming decade in agreement with the new normal and the 2030 Agenda of UN Decade of Ocean Sciences, Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework Convention on Climate Change, and other regional and global agendas.

61st Meeting of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council to be conducted virtually from 6-10 December 2021

The council comprises 32 members, 16 from developing countries, 14 from developed countries and two from transitioning economies. It sits twice annually to devise, evaluate and implement policies and to administer financial proceedings. Likewise, the council reviews the projects proposed for approval and work on consensus in making decisions. The members of the council change every three years.

Barcelona Convention COP 22 will be held in Antalya, Turkey, from 7-10 December 2021

The meeting will include a discussion on the control of marine pollution, work on sustainable marine resources, protecting the marine environment, and calling for cooperation among the Mediterranean coastal states to meet these tasks. The success of this agenda will be beneficial to all and will improve the resources and lives of these states. The logo revealed in the 28 September meeting consists of a pictogram of a loggerhead turtle, Caretta caretta, a sign of the diversity of life in the Mediterranean, which makes up only 1 per cent of global oceans but a large number of marine species (10 per cent) are found here. The loggerhead turtles were the most affected by water pollution, but after many measures were taken to save the species, their numbers are increasing, posing a symbol of hope for saving other marine life.

Trade and Economics

Exploring the AfCFTA and the resilient economic recovery will be held virtually on 1 December 2021

The event will discuss the various aspects of the African Continent Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and how it can promote green trade. It aims to achieve Agenda 2063, which strives to create a more integrated economy for African countries. The focus will be on the various negotiations that are currently underway to develop a green economy. Trade and Sustainability Hub (TSH) will provide a platform for the event to stream online while the International Institute for Sustainable development will host it.

WTO’s 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12), due to take place from 30 November-3 December 2021 in Geneva, Switzerland, postponed

MC12 is considered the highest decision-making entity of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and is joined by many senior officials and trade ministers from 164 countries that are members of the WTO. The conference was first scheduled in June 2020 but was postponed due to the pandemic. The meeting was rescheduled to be held from 30 Novemeber to 3 December. However, The General Council decided on 26 November 2021 to further delay the event. The future date for the convening of the conference has not been given yet.

Social Issues

UNGA Informal Meeting on Road Safety Financing will be held in New York, US, on 3 December 2021

The meeting will be convened by the UNGA president and supported by World Health Organisation (WHO) and other related partners. It will be a one-day informal meeting to discuss the investment in roads safety and arrange finances to achieve it. UNGA resolution has been adopted to avoid at least 50% of the total deaths and injuries resulting from traffic by the year 2030, and the period from 2021-2030 has been set as the Decade of Action for Road Safety. The targeted goals 11 and 13 under the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) also focus on a better and safe transportation system.

ICA 33rd World Cooperative Congress will be held in Seoul, Kora, from 1-3 December 2021  

The convention will strengthen cooperation in dealing with global concern issues and work to improve lives both at the local and international level under the theme, “Deepening our Cooperative Identity.” All-China Federation of Supply and Marketing Cooperatives (ACFSMC) will be the Pillar Partner for this event. It was postponed last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic when the president of the ICA, Ariel Guarco, announced: “I’m delighted to confirm that the 33rd World Cooperative Congress will go ahead next year in Seoul. This will be an opportunity to share experiences of resilience in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and discuss how cooperatives can overcome other global challenges, from climate change to gender equality. Together we can create a better, fairer and more inclusive world for generations to come.” The event will stress the importance of cooperative identity, collective resilience and how they can contribute significantly to social, economic and environmental reconstruction.

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