In theory, the system of free trade driving the world economy is supposed to provide a level playing field for all. In practice, countries have long complained that rivals unfairly dish out aid in the form of state-backed subsidies to boost favored companies -- often as they do the same. Now that the pandemic has forced governments to mount huge rescue efforts for their economies, the fragile set of rules that aim to keep state support in check is under threat. State aid has also become a sticki

  • Aoife White | Bloomberg
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Taiwan has many of the trappings of statehood: A constitution, an army and a democratically elected government. It has one of the world’s top 10 tech companies, boasts a better credit rating than Israel or Spain and is the only place in Asia where gay marriage is legal. But it’s not a member of the United Nations and can’t compete under its own name at the Olympics. The reason is China, which claims the island as its territory and resists any recognition of its de facto independence. As China’s

  • Adrian Kennedy and Samson Ellis | Bloomberg
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Lebanon is no stranger to turmoil and devastation. The small country straddles the geopolitical fault lines of the Middle East and endured a 15-year civil war that ended in 1990. In the latest blow, a massive blast ripped through the port in its capital, Beirut, on Aug. 4, killing at least 100 people, injuring 4,000 more and damaging buildings across the city. Officials have said it was caused by the detonation of chemicals stored there, without saying whether it was an accident or an attack. Th

  • Yasna Haghdoost | Bloomberg
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The rise of global technology superstars like Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google created new challenges for the competition watchdogs who enforce antitrust laws around the world. The companies dominate markets in e-commerce and smartphones, search advertising and social-media traffic. Antitrust enforcers globally have ramped up their oversight. The stepped-up scrutiny in the U.S. under President Donald Trump will likely continue whether or not he wins re-election in November, as Democrats, too,

  • David McLaughlin | Bloomberg
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Early on, the narrative around the internet was that it would be unfettered and borderless, a global commons. That didn’t last long. Chinese President Xi Jinping has led the way in asserting what’s become known as cybersovereignty. That means government control over how the internet is run and used, as well as what happens with the troves of user data generated – an immensely valuable resource in the digital economy. Other authoritarian regimes have followed suit. The U.S. and other democracies

  • Karen Leigh, Stepan Kravchenko and Saritha Rai | Bloomberg
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When U.S. President Donald Trump declared TikTok a threat to national security, there were more than a few Americans who thought, “What’s that?” Others were confused about how a Chinese-owned service mainly known as a way for teenagers to share short videos showing off their pets or dance moves could become the center of a global controversy. However the question of TikTok’s ownership is resolved, the episode could mark a deepening of what’s been described as a digital Cold War.

  • Maya Tribbitt and Michael Tobin | Bloomberg
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In 1947, the authors of India’s constitution envisaged a secular state where all citizens were equal before the law. But the reemergence of Hindu nationalism has been testing that ideal. Since Narendra Modi became prime minister in 2014, hard liners in his Bharatiya Janata Party, or BJP, have become increasingly emboldened in promoting the dominance of Hindus, who form 80% of the population. A restrictive new citizenship law is the latest move to worry the country’s 170 million Muslims. Protests

  • Archana Chaudhary | Bloomberg
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The race to develop an inoculation against Covid-19, involving vaccine developers in more than 30 countries, entails cross-border collaboration but also high-stakes competition. Some countries are using their research dollars to try to buy the first place in line for supplies in the event an experimental vaccine proves effective. Public health specialists warn that such vaccine nationalism could result in the pandemic lasting longer, by preventing the most efficient allocation of shots to preven

  • Jade Wilson | Bloomberg
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Cuán seguro es volar sigue siendo una pregunta inquietante. Las esperanzas de las aerol�neas de un repunte en los viajes para fines del verano del hemisferio norte han chocado de frente con un resurgimiento en los casos de coronavirus desde Europa hasta Asia. A los posibles pasajeros todav�a les preocupa estar encerrados en una cabina durante un tiempo prolongado con posibles personas contagiadas. Los registros muestran que los riesgos no son tan insignificantes.

  • Charlotte Ryan and Naomi Kresge | Bloomberg
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Cuán seguro es volar sigue siendo una pregunta inquietante. Las esperanzas de las aerol�neas de un repunte en los viajes para fines del verano del hemisferio norte han chocado de frente con un resurgimiento en los casos de coronavirus desde Europa hasta Asia. A los posibles pasajeros todav�a les preocupa estar encerrados en una cabina durante un tiempo prolongado con posibles personas contagiadas. Los registros muestran que los riesgos no son tan insignificantes.

  • Charlotte Ryan and Naomi Kresge | Bloomberg
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For more than half a decade, a basic truism of finance has been turned upside down. Interest rates — which normally reward savers and charge borrowers — have been set below zero by central banks in a handful of big countries. That means savings are losing value and borrowers can be paid to take out a loan. Considered one of the boldest monetary experiments of the 21st century, negative interest rates were adopted in Europe and Japan after policy makers realized that they needed extreme measur

  • Jana Randow, Yuko Takeo and Paul Gordon | Bloomberg
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Iran was among the earliest countries to suffer a major Covid-19 outbreak, and was also one of the first to suffer a resurgence. It drew scrutiny for scenes of pilgrims licking holy shrines, questionable death figures and a belated government response that saw a slew of top officials contract the disease. As the virus spread, though, governments elsewhere also proved slow to grasp the threat and other leaders fell ill or were exposed to the virus. Yet the Islamic Republic remains unique in one w

  • Marc Champion and Golnar Motevalli | Bloomberg
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Japan’s colonial rule over the Korean Peninsula ended more than seven decades ago, yet that legacy still roils everyday politics on both sides. South Korea and Japan, major trading partners and both U.S. military allies, have been at loggerheads over what constitutes proper contrition and compensation for Koreans conscripted to work in factories and mines that supplied Japan’s imperial war machine, and those euphemistically called “comfort women,” who were forced to work in military brothels. Ja

  • Isabel Reynolds | Bloomberg
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An incumbent superpower and a rising one are finding coexistence increasingly difficult. Jockeying for position in a changing world, the U.S. and China are facing off on all sorts of issues, most -- but not all -- involving economic rather than military might. Here’s a rundown of some big disputes, some with significant real-world consequences and others that for now are mostly symbolic.

  • Bloomberg News | Bloomberg
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The U.K.’s exit from the European Union is sparking a battle over fishing in waters British and EU trawlers have shared for four decades. British fleets are keen to reclaim their seas, and EU counterparts risk losing prime fishing grounds. Complicating matters, much of the fish and shellfish caught by British boats is sold on the European mainland. Fishing is one of the big remaining stumbling blocks to a trade accord between Britain and the EU. In July, Michel Barnier, the bloc’s chief Brexit n

  • Megan Durisin and Joe Mayes | Bloomberg
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Making airplanes is one of the most prestigious things countries can do, a testimony to their technical skills, engineering prowess and aspirations on the world stage. It can be a source of national pride, but also a flashpoint. Nothing illustrates this more than the global rivalry of Boeing Co. and Airbus SE, the Coke and Pepsi of the skies. An almost 16-year-old trade dispute is coming to a head as the U.S. and European Union prepare to launch a barrage of tariffs, subject to a further World T

  • Bryce Baschuk | Bloomberg
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Japan’s colonial rule over the Korean Peninsula ended more than seven decades ago, yet that legacy still roils everyday politics on both sides. South Korea and Japan, major trading partners and both U.S. military allies, have been at loggerheads over what constitutes proper contrition and compensation for Koreans conscripted to work in factories and mines that supplied Japan’s imperial war machine, and those euphemistically called “comfort women,” who were forced to work in military brothels. Ja

  • Isabel Reynolds | Bloomberg
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Children typically are “superspreaders” of respiratory germs, which makes the fact that they don’t seem to be major transmitters of the coronavirus that causes Covid-19 puzzling. They’re relatively absent among hospitalized patients, which initially was thought to be because they’re less likely to become seriously ill once infected. Later studies indicate that those of primary school age, at least, may be less likely to catch the virus in the first place. With schools and universities in the Nor

  • Jason Gale | Bloomberg
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America’s health-care system, the most expensive in the world, is under renewed scrutiny because of the coronavirus pandemic. U.S. employers and households spend almost $4 trillion annually on medical care, yet America regularly lags its peers in key health metrics, and it registered the greatest number of confirmed coronavirus cases and deaths anywhere in the first six months of the global crisis. In advance of a presidential election in November, the virus’s assault shined a spotlight on the g

  • Danielle Parnass and Adam Schank | Bloomberg
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An incumbent superpower and a rising one are finding coexistence increasingly difficult. Jockeying for position in a changing world, the U.S. and China are facing off on all sorts of issues, most -- but not all -- involving economic rather than military might. Here’s a rundown of some big disputes, some with significant real-world consequences and others that for now are mostly symbolic.

  • Bloomberg News | Bloomberg
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