68.5 million: Some 68.5 million people were recorded as forcibly displacedby persecution, conflict, or other forms of violence at the end of 2017, the largest number ever, according to the new report from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Despite all the political noise about migration in the developed world, 85 percent of the world’s refugees are hosted by developing countries.


3 million: Around three million Chinese tourists visit the United States each year, spending more money per trip on average than visitors from other countries. That makes travel the rare industry where the US enjoys a trade surplus with the People’s Republic. But as trade tensions between Washington and Beijing heat up, could Chinese vacations get cut short?

100: Starting this September, 100 percent of workers at bakeries, electronics stores, and furniture shops in Saudi Arabia will have to be Saudi nationals. Well, on paper at least. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is pushing the quotas as part of his attempt to wean the Kingdom’s economy off its dependence on oil-funded largesse, is having trouble finding home-grown talent that’s willing to work in these positions.

39: Just 39 percent of Japanese adults use social networking sites, according to a recent Pew study, the lowest of any advanced economy. The report found that a median of 60 percent of people across 17 more affluent countries used online social networks in 2017–18. In 19 developing countries, median use was 53 percent, up sharply from just 34 percent half a decade ago.

37: A band of Afghan peace marchers arrived in the country’s capital, Kabul, on June 18 after walking for 37 days to demand an end to the Afghan war. The journey concluded as the Taliban declared an end to a surprise three-day ceasefire coinciding with the Eid-al-Fitr holiday marking the end of Ramadan. It was the first-ever ceasefire in the country’s 17-year long war. 

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