12 October 2018   Leave a comment

The US trade deficit with China continues to rise, despite the tariffs the Trump Administration has placed on Chinese imports.  According to CNBC:

“For January-September, China’s trade surplus with the United States was $225.79 billion, compared with about $196.01 billion in the same period last year, Reuters calculations showed.

“Overall, China’s dollar-denominated September exports surged 14.5 percent from a year ago, beating a Reuters analyst poll forecasting 8.9 percent growth in the same period. In August, Chinese exports grew 9.8 percent from a year ago.

“In September, imports into China grew 14.3 percent from a year ago, missing analysts’ predictions of 15 percent growth and slowing from growth of 19.9 percent for the month of August.”

It is far too soon to think that the US moves have “failed” to change Chinese trade behavior, but it does seem to be clear that the fear of a trade war is beginning to affect economic growth globally.  Alex Ward assesses the effects of a trade war on the world:

“On Tuesday, the IMF released a major report that projected the world’s economy will grow by 3.7 percent, which is 0.2 points lower than they had estimated in April. That’s the same rate of growth as 2017, signaling a slight slowdown — and Trump’s trade policies are a major reason why.

“'[T]he forecast for 2019 has been revised down due to recently announced trade measures, including the tariffs imposed on $200 billion of US imports from China,’ the IMF’s “World Economic Outlook” report concluded.”

The areas under the control of the Rus Empire (now known as Russians) were integrated into the Christian faith under the rule of Volodymyr the Great in the 10th century.   Christianity then split into two blocs in the 11th century, establishing Roman Catholicism in western Europe and Eastern Orthodox Christianity in eastern Europe.   Now there is a split within the Eastern Orthodox bloc as Ukraine has demanded its own Patriarch.  According to Reuters:

“A three-day synod presided over by the Ecumenical Patriarch in Istanbul, seat of the global spiritual leader of roughly 300 million Orthodox Christians, endorsed Ukraine’s request for an “autocephalous” (independent) church.

“The synod will ‘proceed to the granting of Autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine,’ a statement said.

“The synod took several decisions to pave the way for Ukraine to set up its church, including rehabilitating a Ukrainian patriarch excommunicated by the Russian Orthodox Church for leading a breakaway church in the early 1990s.”

The move comes as Ukraine seeks to further the distance between it and Russia after the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2014 but has been developing since the dissolution of the former Soviet Union: “The church known as the Moscow Patriarchate, which is aligned with the Russian Orthodox Church, earlier dominated in Ukraine but has been challenged by a rival known as the Kiev Patriarchate formed after the 1991 break-up of the Russian-dominated Soviet Union.”  The independence of the Ukrainian Church is a clear indication that many believe that the Moscow Patriarchate is a tool of the Russian state. 

Posted October 12, 2018 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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