Putin took time out from meetings with Chinese President Xi Jinping who had just arrived in Moscow for a three-day state visit to speak to lawmakers from more than 40 African countries and woo them with generous promises of economic and military aid
Of the 6.3bn people who reside outside of liberal democracies, 70% have a positive view of China and 66% of Russia.
The free flow of ideas, people, goods, services, and capital across national borders leads to greater economic integration. But globalization, the trend toward these things moving ever more freely between nations, has slowed in recent years.
There is an old joke that the role of economic forecasters is to make astrologers look good. Forecasting GDP or inflation for the upcoming year with any degree of accuracy is virtually impossible, but there are some scary signs appearing.