Economic Headwinds Mount as Leaders Weigh Costs of Confronting Russia

The interruption of wheat exports from Ukraine and Russia, which together account for 28 percent of global exports, along with supply chain disruptions, a severe drought in India that has caused it to ban shipments of grain and Covid-related lockdowns in China, are also causing food prices to spiral and increasing global hunger, particularly in Africa and the Middle East. The question for both American and European policymakers is how to corral leaping prices without sending their economies into recession. The Federal Reserve has begun raising interest rates to tame…

Your Thursday Briefing: A Ban on Russian Oil?

Good morning. We’re covering the E.U.’s plan to ban Russian oil, growing U.S. frustration with the politicized Supreme Court and a separatist movement in Pakistan. The E.U. may ban Russian oil With no end to the Ukraine conflict in sight, the European Union took a major step on Wednesday toward weakening Moscow’s ability to finance the war, proposing a total embargo on Russian oil. If approved this week as expected, it would be the bloc’s biggest and costliest step yet toward supporting Ukraine and ending its own dependence on Russian…

Russia Wants to Sell More Energy to Asia, but Has to Slash Prices

BEIJING — Last year, the Grand Aniva, a Russian tanker with four spherical tanks for holding ultracold liquefied natural gas, sailed back and forth between a gas field in eastern Russia and depots in Japan and Taiwan. But two days after Russia invaded Ukraine, the ship switched routes, sailing to China instead. The voyages of the tanker, which is as long as three football fields, underlined that President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia can still find buyers in Asia for his country’s fossil fuel exports despite Western sanctions. He needs…

Your Thursday Briefing: Russia Cuts Gas Supplies

Good morning. A gas crisis looms over Europe, anger grows in Shanghai and Singapore executes an intellectually disabled man. Russia cuts gas supplies to Europe In its toughest response yet to European sanctions, Russia halted natural gas shipments to Bulgaria and Poland. The E.U.’s top official denounced the move as “blackmail,” but European officials said they were prepared to weather the near-term impact: Poland’s gas storage facilities are 75 percent full, and it has been working for years to avoid being held to ransom by Moscow over energy. Germany also…

Faced With a Changed Europe, China Sticks to an Old Script

When European leaders recently pressed China’s top leader, Xi Jinping, to distance himself from Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, he doggedly stuck to prepared remarks for the video summit, shutting down any opening for their demands. Speaking from the grandiose Great Hall of the People, he declared that China, as it had for years, welcomed the European Union as a pillar of an emerging multipolar world. But Mr. Xi also made clear that cajoling China about Russia was not the kind of assertiveness that he wanted. Their talks were…

Supply Chains Tainted by Forced Labor in China, Panel Told

WASHINGTON — Human rights activists, labor leaders and others urged the Biden administration on Friday to put its weight behind a coming ban on products made with forced labor in the Xinjiang region of China, saying slavery and coercion taint company supply chains that run through the region and China more broadly. The law, the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, was signed by President Biden in December and is set to go into effect in June. It bans all goods made in Xinjiang or with ties to certain entities or…

Your Tuesday Briefing: The Fallout from Bucha

your tuesday briefing the fallout from bucha

Good morning. We’re covering the fallout from Russian atrocities in Bucha, the end of Carrie Lam’s tenure as Hong Kong’s leader and Pakistan’s political crisis. Rising calls to punish Russia President Biden called the indiscriminate civilian deaths in Bucha a “war crime” and said the U.S. would impose additional sanctions on Russia. Some European leaders also demanded tougher sanctions, including a total ban on Russian fuel imports. Here are the latest updates. Moscow has denied that its soldiers had anything to do with the atrocities, which have come to light…

Europe Asks China Not to Aid Russia’s War in Ukraine

BRUSSELS — The European Union on Friday called on China not to aid Russia’s war against Ukraine or to subvert Western sanctions on Moscow, in the first summit meeting between the two sides in two years. The summit, in separate sessions with Beijing’s leaders, Prime Minister Li Keqiang and President Xi Jinping, came as tensions were high over Beijing’s support for Russia’s war in Ukraine, China’s record on human rights and its trade boycott of Lithuania for hosting a representative office of Taiwan. Europe-China relations have essentially been in a…

Covid, Russia and Economy Put the ‘China Model’ to the Test

covid russia and economy put the china model to the test

A year ago, while many countries were still reeling from Covid-19, China seemed to be one of few places prospering through the pandemic. It was also the only major economy that reported growth in 2020. Global investors were bullish on Chinese stocks even as Beijing’s regulatory crackdown on its private sector became more like a political campaign. That led some people in China to argue that its one-party authoritarian rule offered a compelling alternative to traditional liberal democracy. The United States was declining politically and economically, they said, and the…

OPEC and Russia to Meet as War in Ukraine Roils Oil Market

In the last month, oil markets have been shaken by a war that has sparked a jump in prices and threatened a critical shortfall in crude and other petroleum products. But when most of the world’s largest oil producers meet by teleconference on Thursday to discuss supplies, analysts don’t expect much action. Officials from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia are likely to do little more than announce their usual modest monthly production increases, leading to questions about how much oil the group really does have in…