ON OUR DESKS
- Forecasting midterm election implications
- Advising clients on export controls
- Researching Ukraine reconstruction funding
- Preparing comments on USTR China tariff review
- Preparing comments on FDA definition of “healthy”
How can we help you? Email any IBC counsellor for assistance or consult our issues list to find the expert you’re looking for.
In case you missed it:
- October 27: Deputy Head of Mission of the British Embassy James Roscoe, the United Kingdom’s economic and political relationship with the U.S.
Up next: Register for upcoming WIBC discussions here
- November 2: Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for the Western Hemisphere Ian Saunders, U.S. competitiveness strategies and economic priorities in the Americas
- November 9: Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Trade Policy and Negotiations Tony Fernandes, Global trade policy and negotiations affecting international business
- November 16: Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources and former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt, International energy policy
WIBC discussions are open to WIBC members only. Not a member? Contact Christina for membership inquiries.
YOU NEED TO KNOW
Chinese President Xi Jinping elevated his closest allies to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Politburo Standing Committee (PBSC), filling it for the first time in more than three decades completely with allies of the General Secretary and reinforcing Xi’s unprecedented control over the party.
In an unusually dramatic moment, former President Hu Jintao was abruptly removed from the party congress’ closing ceremony, with government media claiming Hu was in poor health. However, many analysts speculated that the move was a deliberate demonstration of Xi’s total control of the party and rejection of the Hu administration’s more market-oriented economic approaches.
Current PRC ambassador to Washington Qin Gang will reportedly be promoted to Foreign Minister after the National People’s Congress in the spring. This, along with current Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s elevation to the Politburo, signals likely continuation of China’s aggressive foreign policy.
In a new National Defense Strategy, the United States characterized the PRC’s “coercive and increasingly aggressive” actions in the Indo-Pacific as “authoritarian” and said they present the United States’ most comprehensive and serious defense challenge. The strategy says the United States will prioritize countering China’s influence in the Indo-Pacific, followed by “the Russia challenge in Europe,” in a notable China-focused shift from its 2018 strategy that more blandly identified the “reemergence of long-term, strategic competition” with Russia and China as the largest threat to U.S. global leadership.
Contact: Pat Sheehy, Ethan Knecht
In an October 27 address, Russian President Vladimir Putin condemned what he called the West’s abandonment of traditional values and repeated claims that Western values prompted his invasion of Ukraine. He reiterated claims that Ukraine is preparing to use a dirty bomb, a tactic U.S. and allied analysts believes is intended to provide cover should Russia use a small nuclear device.
The October 25 EU and G7 conference on Ukraine reconstruction focused on funding structure and governance, rather than specific donor pledges (expected to total in the tens of billions).. The conference envisioned allocation of reconstruction funds will be overseen by mixed boards of donor country representatives, subject matter experts, and Ukrainian representatives. With an October 28 package valued at $275 million, U.S. defense funding for Ukraine reached $18.5 billion allocated since 2021.
Multiple firms announced activity related to divestment from Russia this past week. Mercedes-Benz will exit after selling its in-country assets to local investors. German software firm SAP is reportedly unable to leave Russia by its announced years-end deadline as it is unable to find buyers to maintain certain service contracts. The main delay is reportedly potential Russian legal liability for SAP senior in-country employees for failing to fulfill contracts.
Contact: Pat Sheehy
- The United States and the EU launched a U.S.-EU Task Force on the Inflation Reduction Act to address European concerns around the implementation of the act, including support for electrical vehicles.
- Honolulu, Palm Springs, Detroit, and Seattle were named as host cities for the 2023 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Senior Officials’ and Ministerial meetings. The United States has not announced the host city for the November 2023 APEC Leaders’ Meeting.
- In a new Executive Order and other statements, the United States broadened sanctions priorities and authorities for Nicaragua, including new sanctions on the Nicaraguan gold sector.
- Congressional and USTR delegations traveled to South America this week to discuss trade and investment, including in Argentina, Columbia Ecuador, and Colombia.
- The United States is evaluating possible penalties on Saudi Arabia for supporting Russia’s war in Ukraine by manipulating global oil prices, according to comments made by NSC spokesperson John Kirby. Kirby noted that any action will be held until Congress returns.
NOTICES, BILLS & HEARINGS
Federal Register Notices
- EOP, Additional steps to address the situation in Nicaragua, October 26
- State, Meetings of the U.S.-Peru environmental affairs council, October 26
- State, Meetings of the U.S.-Panama environmental affairs council, October 24
- Treasury/OFAC, Nicaragua sanctions designations, October 28
- Treasury/OFAC, Russia sanctions designation, October 25
- Treasury/OFAC, Venezuela sanctions designation, October 24
- USTR, Mexican Perishable Agricultural Products, October 28
- H.R.9211 (Espaillat, D-NY) Would establish a lending program to develop sustainable and equitable growth and energy security in Latin America and the Caribbean.
- H.R.9206 (Castro, D-TX) Would provide law enforcement authority to the US International Development Finance Corporation’s inspector general.
- H.R.9203 (Banks, R-IN) Would impose sanctions on the Supreme Leader and President of Iran and their offices for human rights abuses and support for terrorism.
- Bart Meroney, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Manufacturing
- Caitlin Durkovich, White House Deputy Homeland Security Adviser for Resilience
- Dean Thompson, U.S. Ambassador to Nepal
- Elizabeth Jones, U.S. Charge d’Affaires to India
- Jason Tama, NSC Senior Director for Resilience
- Shefali Razdan Duggal, U.S. Ambassador to the Netherlands
Want more scoops on personnel moves? Find the most recent Who’s Who here.
- Brazil presidential elections run-off, October 30
- Denmark parliamentary elections, November 1
- COP27 (Sharm El Sheikh), November 6
- U.S. general election, November 8
Looking farther ahead? Find the most recent full international events calendar here.