Wednesday's world stories

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
Jul 15, 2020 - World

Canada poaches tech talent from the U.S.


Data: Center for Security and Emerging Technology; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

Canada is convincing an increasing number of noncitizen American residents with tech talent to instead settle north of the border.

Why it matters: The U.S. risks losing its long-standing leadership in the tech sector as restrictive laws and a hostile political climate causes highly skilled immigrants to leave for more welcoming countries.

Jul 15, 2020 - World

8 world leaders demand equal access to coronavirus vaccine

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. Photo: Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

Eight world leaders called on the international community in a Washington Post op-ed Wednesday to ensure that people across the globe have equal access to a future vaccine for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Global demand for a successful vaccine is expected to skyrocket, which could send nations racing to obtain a supply while international organizations scramble to secure equitable access for all countries.

Jul 15, 2020 - World

Pompeo announces visa restrictions on some Huawei employees

Photo: Andrew Harnik/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. will impose visa restrictions on certain employees of Chinese telecom Huawei and other companies that "provide material support to regimes engaging in human rights violations globally," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday.

Why it matters: The Trump administration's latest escalation against Huawei, which U.S. intelligence officials view as a threat to national security due to its ties to the Chinese military, comes the day after the U.K. announced it will no longer allow the telecom to access its 5G network.

Jul 14, 2020 - World

Trump signs bill sanctioning China over Hong Kong security law

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

President Trump announced Tuesday that he has signed a bill sanctioning Chinese officials in response to Beijing's national security law for Hong Kong, which dramatically curbs the city's political freedoms. He also signed an executive order ending preferential treatment for Hong Kong.

Why it matters: The bill, which will sanction both Chinese individuals interfering in Hong Kong's affairs and the banks that support them, has broad bipartisan support in Congress. Its passage into law is the latest escalation by the Trump administration against the Chinese Communist Party's efforts to strip Hong Kong of its autonomy.

Jul 14, 2020 - World

Chinese students at U.S. colleges face deep uncertainty

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

A new visa guideline issued last week would strip international students in the U.S. of their student visa if their college classes are online-only amid the pandemic.

Why it matters: More than 360,000 Chinese students are enrolled at U.S. colleges. Many of them could be forced to return to China if the rule change is implemented.

Jul 14, 2020 - World

New book examines Neil Bush's China links

Image credit: Hardie Grant Publishing

A new book documents China's influence in North America and Europe, zeroing in on how the Chinese Communist Party co-opts the elite in democratic societies.

Why it matters: Growing scrutiny of China's ties with top business and political figures in the U.S. is making it riskier for them to openly laud Beijing.

Dave Lawler, author of World
Jul 14, 2020 - World

The U.K. was the most-prepared country for a pandemic — until it wasn't

Photo: Julian Simmonds/WPA Pool/Getty Images

One country was easily the best-prepared in the world to respond quickly to and mitigate the spread of an epidemic, according to the 2019 Global Health Security Index: Great Britain.

Reality check: When the coronavirus struck, the U.K. had arguably one of the least effective responses among rich countries, despite decades of preparation for just such an event. Its death toll ranks behind only the U.S. and Brazil.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Jul 14, 2020 - Technology

U.S. pushes homegrown drone industry amid China battle

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Alarmed at the prospect of relying on Chinese-made drones for public safety and monitoring critical industries, U.S. investors and the federal government are newly backing a domestic drone industry of hardware and software companies.

The big picture: The moves come as the industry continues to be led by DJI, a Chinese hardware maker — and as concerns grow both in China and the U.S. about reliance on the other country's technology.

U.K. bans Huawei from its 5G network

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

The U.K. said Tuesday that it will no longer allow Chinese tech company Huawei to access its 5G network amid growing pressure on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to take a stand against Beijing, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: It's a big win for the Trump administration, which has sought to firewall Huawei from networks around the world and put intense pressure on its closest ally to make such a move.

Dave Lawler, author of World
Jul 14, 2020 - World

Older, rural voters tip Poland's election to the incumbent

Adapted from Europe Elects; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios 

President Andrzej Duda was re-elected Sunday in the tightest election in modern Polish history, with 51% of the vote to 49% for Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski.

Why it matters: The populist ruling party, Law and Justice, is now expected to press ahead with steps that critics say are eroding the independence of the courts and media, and have brought Poland into conflict with the EU.