12

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Republic of Korea: Impact of the Leadership Crisis and Security Threats on the Economy

25-11-2016

After decades of authoritarian military rule, South Korea — an East Asian nation on the southern half of the Korean Peninsula — has opened up politically. The current president, Park Guen-hye, faces a range of domestic problems. Recently, a corruption scandal triggered widespread protests and caused her approval ratings to plummet. The US continues to be an important ally in both economic and political terms, particularly in light of deteriorating relations with North Korea, whose nuclear programme ...

After decades of authoritarian military rule, South Korea — an East Asian nation on the southern half of the Korean Peninsula — has opened up politically. The current president, Park Guen-hye, faces a range of domestic problems. Recently, a corruption scandal triggered widespread protests and caused her approval ratings to plummet. The US continues to be an important ally in both economic and political terms, particularly in light of deteriorating relations with North Korea, whose nuclear programme has accelerated in 2016. Economically, South Korea, one of the world’s most rapidly aging societies, faces major challenges despite its strong growth and export record. Measures are needed to tackle low employment among women and young people and to support the elderly as well as to promote social inclusion. The large proportion of irregular workers on the labour market accounts for the big wage gap and high relative poverty rate. Economic restructuring in China, South Korea’s biggest trading partner, also has a spill-over effect. In July 2016, trade between the EU and South Korea was fully liberalised, apart from certain agricultural products, under the ambitious ‘second generation’ free trade agreement (FTA) signed in 2011. The FTA has benefited both sides. It does not contain an investment chapter and could be revised to incorporate one. However, public concerns in both South Korea and the EU would first have to be addressed.

South Korea ahead of legislative elections

07-04-2016

On 13 April 2016 the 300-member National Assembly will be renewed. Following January's nuclear test by North Korea, South Korea is experiencing high tension with its neighbour, which adds to political instability, a slowing economy, rising social inequality and concerns about freedoms.

On 13 April 2016 the 300-member National Assembly will be renewed. Following January's nuclear test by North Korea, South Korea is experiencing high tension with its neighbour, which adds to political instability, a slowing economy, rising social inequality and concerns about freedoms.

Albania: Political parties and the EU

16-02-2016

Since the start of Albania's transition towards democracy, its political parties have considered European integration as the country's sole viable political option. Achieving this shared objective has been tied to successful domestic reforms. However, persistent political deadlock, mistrust between government and opposition, and a series of contested elections have slowed progress.

Since the start of Albania's transition towards democracy, its political parties have considered European integration as the country's sole viable political option. Achieving this shared objective has been tied to successful domestic reforms. However, persistent political deadlock, mistrust between government and opposition, and a series of contested elections have slowed progress.

Cuba: Political situation

22-09-2015

Although Raúl Castro has introduced some (mainly economic) reforms, the Communist Party remains in control and the political system seems unlikely to change substantially until he retires in 2018. However, the latest developments may facilitate a gradual transformation in the longer term.

Although Raúl Castro has introduced some (mainly economic) reforms, the Communist Party remains in control and the political system seems unlikely to change substantially until he retires in 2018. However, the latest developments may facilitate a gradual transformation in the longer term.

Political parties in Turkmenistan

16-07-2015

Turkmenistan is a 'presidential republic' in which the president is vested with extensive authority. After independence in 1991, the country was ruled by Saparmurat Niyazov until his death in 2006. His successor, Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedov, took timid steps towards democratisation and liberalisation. Although there are some welcome developments, the regime is still considered authoritarian. In December 2013, the Turkmens held their first ever multi-party elections.

Turkmenistan is a 'presidential republic' in which the president is vested with extensive authority. After independence in 1991, the country was ruled by Saparmurat Niyazov until his death in 2006. His successor, Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedov, took timid steps towards democratisation and liberalisation. Although there are some welcome developments, the regime is still considered authoritarian. In December 2013, the Turkmens held their first ever multi-party elections.