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2023 game changers that weren’t

What we thought would stir up the political landscape in 2023… but didn’t.

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Africa's economy could rival China or India, says WTO chief Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala
Africa's economy could rival China or India, says WTO chief Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala | GZERO Media

Africa's economy could rival China or India, says WTO chief Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

The African continent has a population of 1.4 billion people, but it imports more than 90% of its medicines and 90% of its vaccines. WTO Director General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala says the time has come to open up the continent to globalization and encourage businesses to invest in African countries.

On GZERO World with Ian Bremmer, Okonjo-Iweala makes the case for decentralizing and diversifying global trade to open up new markets, bring Global South countries into the mainstream of the world economy, and reduce reliance on any one country for crucial goods and services.

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Former U.S. President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump attends a 2024 presidential election campaign event at Sportsman Boats in Summerville, South Carolina, U.S. September 25, 2023.

REUTERS/Sam Wolfe

Hard Numbers: Trump liable for fraud, Kenya signs a big defense pact, Thailand jails king’s critic, Mexican exports get stranded, Nigeria rescues students

2.2 billion: Donald Trump was found liable for fraud Tuesday by a New York judge for lying about his wealth on financial statements to banks and insurers, inflating his net worth by approximately $2.2 billion dollars. Justice Arthur Engoron stripped the former president of control over some of his properties and sanctioned his lawyers for their behavior. Despite extensive legal troubles, Trump remains the frontrunner – and by a wide margin – for the GOP 2024 presidential nomination.

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A closed fuel station is seen near Nigeria's oil hub city of Port Harcourt

Reuters

Nigeria goes dark

A ten-hour nationwide blackout on Thursday has thrown a spotlight on the oil-rich African nation’s chronic energy crisis. After a fire knocked out the nation’s electrical grid, all 36 states and the capital city of Abuja went dark in what Nigeria’s electricity distributors describe as a “total system collapse.”
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Beyonce performs on the Pyramid stage

Reuters

Hard Numbers: Sweden blames Beyoncé, Boris found to have misled parliament, EU threatens Google, Nigeria releases the Naira, forced displacements hit new high

0.2 The pop superstar who once sang about “Bills, Bills, Bills” is now blamed for bumping up inflation in … Sweden. Analysts say Beyoncé’s decision to launch her world tour in Stockholm in May created a scramble for hotels that drove up prices, adding 0.2 points to inflation.” Next up? “The Boss” is playing in Gothenburg for three nights later this month – Pay Me My Money Down indeed...

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Japanese chef Mitsuo Ise prepares a "Germany" version of okonomiyaki ahead of the G-7 summit in Hiroshima.

REUTERS

Hard Numbers: Hiroshima’s delicacies, Italy’s first world problems, Durham's report, Russia’s military spending, Rudy's alleged pardons grift

800: Ahead of the G-7 summit later this week in Hiroshima, Japan, some 800 restaurants specializing in a local comfort food known as okonomiyaki are hoping to make a global splash. Okonomiyaki, which means “cooked as you like it,” is a savory pancake-shaped delicacy usually made with cabbage, noodles, batter, and meat. But locals are cooking up special editions for foreign dignitaries, including a sauerkraut one for the Germans, a carbonara one for the Italians, and a burger stuffed one for the Americans. Not all locals approve.

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A chart comparing countries with the largest Muslim populations with corresponding food inflation rates.

Luisa Vieira

The Graphic Truth: Ramadan celebrations now cost more

The holy month of Ramadan has begun for the world's roughly 1.9 billion Muslims. But for many, the joyous feasting with family before and after the Ramadan fast will be overshadowed by inflated food prices thanks to Russia’s war in Ukraine. Majority-Muslim populations in Asia and the Middle East, where many countries rely on food imports, will feel the economic pinch most. We take a look at countries with the largest Muslim populations and their corresponding food inflation rates.

Bola Tinubu reacts after he was declared the winner in Nigeria's presidential election at his party's campaign headquarters, in Abuja.

REUTERS/Marvellous Durowaiye

Nigeria elects political “Godfather" as president

It took a while and there was a lot of post-election drama, but Nigeria finally has a new president-elect: Bola Tinubu.

The ruling party candidate was declared the winner early Wednesday, five days after a vote marred by a slower-than-expected count and problems with tallying. Before the electoral commission made the call, Tinubu's rivals had demanded that officials cancel the result and redo the election because the outcome had been “manipulated” by results sheets being posted online.

While any legal challenges to his victory by opposition hopeful Atiku Abubakar and insurgent third-party candidate Peter Obi make their way through the courts, Tinubu is the president-elect and officially takes over in May. Who is he, and what are his plans for Africa's most populous nation and largest economy?

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