Continuing to browse our website indicates your consent to our use of cookies. For more information, see our Privacy policy.

What we are reading

Mounting sanctions on Russia and a shifting tone in China

Published 22 March 2022

Disrupted trade of wheat and grains is stoking worries about global food security. In China, a shift in tone about the direction of economic policies. Find out more in What we are reading, our list of articles and analysis on the drivers of global trade.

Sanctions pressure Russia – and other economies too 

Russia’s war on Ukraine continues to disrupt global trade, particularly in key commodities, including oil, gas, wheat and grains. The Economist asks: Will the world cope without Russia’s commodities, and how? What will be the impact on global food markets? For a deeper dive into disrupted food supplies, listen to the latest Trade Talks podcast. 

Multilateral organizations are taking action – or trying to. G7 economies issued a statement outlining the steps for inflicting economic pressure on Russia. WTO Members are considering punitive measures, including revoking Russia’s Most-Favored-Nation status and suspending Belarus’s accession process. 

The key question: Will sanctions be effective? In terms of US trade, not very effective, notes Ed Gresser while examining tariffs on key Russian imports. Simon Evenett and Marc-Andreas Muendler also offer an analysis. Confused about the status of various sanctions? Check out this helpful sanctions timeline from Chad Bown of the Peterson Institute for International Economics. 

Some countries are exploring workarounds. India is weighing options, reports the Financial Times. Asian tech firms, meanwhile, are grappling with sanctions compliance, according to Nikkei Asia.

A shifting tone in China?  

A shifting tone is emerging on China’s economic policy. Some analysts speculate that China’s economic policies are being reconsidered, per the Wall Street Journal. May China finally resolve the dispute over the audit of Chinese companies listed on US stock exchanges?  

The growing Covid-19 outbreak in China is impacting global supply chains. The question is, by how much? The Economist examines the challenges.  

Meanwhile, concerned about skewed competition from countries such as China, Brussels is acquiring powers to level the playing field in government procurement, reports Andy Bounds of the Financial Times. 

Digital trade as the key to future economic growth 

How important is digital trade to Asia’s economic growth? A report by the Asian Development Bank looks at Southeast Asia’s post-pandemic future and the role of the digital economy. The takeaway: Digital trade development is key to growth, explained this overview by Nikkei Asia   

Many small businesses struggle with navigating the digital economy. In practice, how do taxes on digital services apply? Learn from this helpful graphic from the Peterson Institute for International Economics. 

In the European Union, the new Data Act proposes substantial government intervention over how companies manage and share data generated while doing business. The Centre for European Policy Studies explains the proposal.  

As the EU shapes its digital future, can the bloc win the race to gain the benefits of AI and other advanced technologies? Eva Maydell of the European Council on Foreign relations charts the prospects.

More helpful tools for trade 

A new toolkit from the WTO and the International Chamber of Commerce shows the usefulness of common standards for paperless trade 

Finally, how much do you know about a country’s exports? Challenge yourself with Tradle, a game from the Observatory of Economic Complexity. 


© The Hinrich Foundation. See our website Terms and conditions for our copyright and reprint policy. All statements of fact and the views, conclusions and recommendations expressed in this publication are the sole responsibility of the author(s).