International relations

Expert Voices

Global powers accelerate plays for influence in Africa

Putin, Kagame and fellow Russian and Rwandan officials seated across a conference table
Rwandan President Paul Kagame and Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Sochi summit. Photo: Alexander Ryumin/TASS via Getty Images

Russia's late October summit with African leaders in Sochi took place amid a renewed global scramble among foreign powers for influence on the continent.

Why it matters: Increased competition holds promise for Africa. Not only will foreign investment — which rebounded last year after a recent downturn — rise, but African countries can be more selective about deal terms while diversifying their partnerships beyond currently dominant powers such as China.

Expert Voices

Fernández win shifts vision for Argentina's economy

Alberto Fernandez waves while walking to a car
Argentina's President-elect Alberto Fernández. Photo: Marcos Brindicci/Getty Images

The inauguration of Alberto Fernández as Argentina's president on Dec. 10 will reorient both the country's macroeconomic policies and its hemispheric relations.

Why it matters: Fernández pledged to address economic concerns that have deepened despite efforts by incumbent president Mauricio Macri to right the economy. But Fernández's running mate — former President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner — has a mixed economic record from her 2007–2015 term, which saw growth-slowing restrictions placed on trade and foreign currency exchanges.