Hard Numbers

179,000: An analysis by the Trade Partnership, a consultancy, predicts that higher prices for steel and aluminum under the Trump administration’s new tariffs will create 33,000 jobs in industries that produce these metals, but destroy as many as 179,000 jobs in industries that consume them. Trade policy is always a trade-offs policy: which blue-collar votes does Trump value more — those of steel makers or, say, auto makers?


98: The USA has supplied major arms to 98 states since 2013, according to SIPRI. Exports to governments in the conflict-torn Middle East accounted for half of those exports, by volume. More broadly, the Middle East accounted for a third of all global arms imports during that period. While cyberwarfare looks like the biggest challenge of the future, conventional weapons are still wreaking plenty of havoc in the world’s deadliest region.

73: Per capita GDP in Russia rose by 73 percent between the beginning of Putin’s first term as president in 2000 and 2016. This, coupled with his forceful reassertion of Russia’s global role, accounts in part for Putin’s high popularity as he heads for re-election this Sunday. But most of those economic gains were achieved more than a decade ago, and Putin has still failed, so far, to achieve his objective of matching average incomes in Portugal.

50: In China, by contrast, the economy has grown by more than 50 per cent, to $13.1tn, since President Xi Jinping took power five years ago. Some 66 million new urban jobs were created, and 68 million people left poverty during that period. Now that Mr. Xi is preparing to stick around for a while, can he continue to deliver the economic Chinese Dream that he has promised?

8.9: If Ghana hits a projected growth rate of 8.9 percent this year, it could be among the fastest growing economies in the world, outpacing tech-giant India and eclipsing Ethiopia as Africa’s economic star. But there are big questions about whether the tiny West African nation’s dependency on commodities (oil and cocoa) are a boon or a burden for sustainable growth and job creation.

Scientists, engineers and technologists are turning to nature in search of solutions to climate change. Biomimicry is now being applied in the energy sector, medicine, architecture, communications, transport and agriculture in a bid to make human life on this planet more sustainable and limit the impacts of global warming. New inventions have been inspired by humpback whales, kingfishers and mosquitoes.

Learn more at Eniday: Energy Is A Good Story

The drumbeat for regulating artificial intelligence (AI) is growing louder. Earlier this week, Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google's parent company, Alphabet, became the latest high-profile Silicon Valley figure to call for governments to put guardrails around technologies that use huge amounts of (sometimes personal) data to teach computers how to identify faces, make decisions about mortgage applications, and myriad other tasks that previously relied on human brainpower.

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January 27 marks 75 years since the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi extermination camp. But even as some 40 heads of state gathered in Jerusalem this week to commemorate the six million Jews who were killed, a recent Pew survey revealed that many American adults don't know basic facts about the ethnic cleansing of Europe's Jews during the Second World War. Fewer than half of those polled knew how many Jews were killed in the Holocaust, and close to a third didn't know when it actually happened. Here's a look at some of the numbers.

1: The Greek parliament has elected a woman president for the first time since the country's independence some 200 years ago. A political outsider, Katerina Sakellaropoulou is a high court judge with no known party affiliation. "Our country enters the third decade of the 21st century with more optimism," Greece's prime minister said.

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A quarantine in China– Local authorities have locked down the city of Wuhan, the source of the outbreak of a new and potentially deadly respiratory virus that, as of Thursday morning, had infected more than 540 people in at least six countries. Other nearby cities were also hit by travel restrictions. Rail and air traffic out of Wuhan has been halted. Public transportation is shut, and local officials are urging everyone to stay put unless they have a special need to travel. Wuhan is a city of 11 million people, many of whom were about to travel for the Chinese New Year. We're watching to see whether these extraordinary measures help stem the outbreak, but also to see how the people affected respond to the clampdown.

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