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Ian Bremmer on the State of the World: COVID-19, the great accelerator

Watch Ian Bremmer's full speech on "The State of the World." Today, this annual address has kicked off the 2020 GZERO Summit in Japan.

The coronavirus pandemic hasn't invented today's biggest challenges. For better and for worse, it simply accelerated important changes that were already well underway. It has exacerbated inequality of opportunity, both within and among countries. In fact, the most severe COVID-19 impacts in 2021 will be economic, particularly as debts soar in developing countries and international lenders have less to lend. The pandemic has also sped up the erosion of faith in democratic institutions and international cooperation. But the economic damage inflicted by this crisis has accelerated the transition from the 20th century brick-and-mortar model of commerce and growth toward a more dynamic 21st century economy that is powered more by the flow of information and less by fossil fuels. In short, thanks in part to the worst global health emergency in more than a century, the future will arrive sooner than we thought.

Empathy and listening are key to establishing harmonious relationships, as demonstrated by Callista Azogu, GM of Human Resources & Organization for Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC), an Eni subsidiary in Abuja. "To build trust is very difficult. To destroy it is very easy," says Callista, whose busy days involve everything from personnel issues to union relationships. She sees great potential for her native Nigeria not only because of the country's natural resources, but because of its vibrant and creative people.

Learn more about Callista in this episode of Faces of Eni.

For the world's wealthiest nations, including the United States, the rollout of COVID-19 vaccine has been rocky, to say the least. And as a result, much of the developing world will have to wait even longer for their turn. Part of the challenge, World Bank President David Malpass says, is that "advanced economies have reserved a lot of the vaccine doses." Malpass sat down with Ian Bremmer recently to talk about what his organization is doing to try to keep millions around the world from slipping deeper into poverty during the pandemic. Their conversation was part of the latest episode of GZERO World.

Saturday will mark the beginning of an historic turning point for European politics as 1,001 voting members of Germany's Christian Democratic Union, the party of Chancellor Angela Merkel, hold an online conference to elect a new leader.

Here are the basic facts:

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For the first time in twenty years, extreme poverty around the world is growing. How does the developing world recover from a pandemic that has brought even the richest nations to their knees? David Malpass, the President of the World Bank, is tasked with answering that question. He joins Ian Bremmer on GZERO World to talk about how his organization is trying to keep the developing world from slipping further into poverty in the wake of a once-in-a-century pandemic.

Joe Biden wants to move into the White House, but the coast isn't clear. He may need some bleach.

Watch more PUPPET REGIME here.

The GZERO World Podcast with Ian Bremmer. Listen now.

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