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Weekly Roundup | 11.14.2023

Top headlines and news impacting Latin America, Africa and Southeast Asia commercial real estate.

 
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The November 19th runoff election will put either the radical Massa into power, or the more moderate and market-friendly candidate Milei. Grocery stores lack the basics, inflation is predicted to rise to 200%, dollars are scarce, and the debtor nation still owes $44 billion to the IMF.



The agreement encourages cooperation and resource sharing to exploit lithium in a way beneficial for the nations. Both nations are led by far-left ideologues so don’t expect much. We’ve previously written how lithium could help integrate the Americas.



Mexico City is sinking at a rate of a foot and a half annually. It was built on top of a lake the native inhabitants pushed dirt and rocks into creating a foundation really not suited for building a megacity upon. Want to own real estate on the rapidly sinking city now also running out of drinking water?




The price tag was not disclosed, but the supposed combined value of the firms is $50 million. Bricksave is a crowdfunding platform allowing users to buy real estate in Europe and America. It has invested $35 million in 260 properties through its 20k+ registered users in 19 countries (mostly in Latin America).


 
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The US Export-Import Bank is shamelessly saddling Africa with more debt to fund inefficient renewable energy investments. African leaders must stop taking marching orders from Washington DC or risk remaining discombobulated. (Photo is of Biden’s pick to head the bank)




The Kingdom’s wealth fund has more than $700 billion under management, and wants to make “game changing” investments in Africa. The Saudi Energy Minister announced signed agreements with Nigeria, Senegal, Chad and Ethiopia on energy cooperation. Mozambique signed a $158 million deal for an infrastructure project which includes hospitals and a dam.




The ANC has a profound racism problem and can’t seem to break the wicked habit. Farmers that are “too white” will no longer be able to export to Great Britain or the EU which will affect products such as milk, cream, butter, fruit, nuts, sugar, jams, puree, fruit juices, yeast, table grapes and wine. SA agriculture exports were valued at $13 billion in 2022, 20% of those going to the EU.




Kenya’s President Ruto is doing many things right and helping his country to be the primarily bearer of light in the region. The voters are angry about the removal of food and fuel subsidies, but it had to be done. Lesser leaders would have selfishly kept the subsides in place in exchange for votes and gratitude. He said, “The time has come, therefore, to retire the false comforts and illusionary benefits of wasteful expenditure and counterproductive subsidies on consumption by which we dug ourselves deeper into the hole of avoidable debt."




Three-quarters of cars produced in South Africa are exported, primarily to European countries. The move in SA could be to avoid export loses from the EU pledge to ban sales of gasoline cars from 2035. The plan is to make the Ranger Plug-in Vehicle in SA and export 70% of the 44,000 Rangers made to Europe, Australia and New Zealand. It plans to also later bring the fully electric Mustang Mach-E production to SA in 2025.


 
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Apple products are made by China and one Chinese supplier Luxshare Precision Industry will invest $330 million more in Vietnam to produce cables for “smart” devices, communications equipment, touch pens, smart positioning tags and smartwatches. Apple under Tim Cook has stubbornly stuck by China with slavish devotion.




The American semiconductor maker Intel, the 2nd largest after Taiwan’s TSMC, cited bureaucracy and power delivery issues as the reasons for the decision. This is a blow to Vietnam who is trying to position itself to gain from the reshuffling of the semiconductor supply chain underway.



In 2018, office space demand was 1.3 million m². As of September, office demand was around 809,000 m² and is expected to hit the 1 million square meter mark by the end of 2023. Metros gaining office demand are Tokyo (+280,000 m²), New Delhi (+308,000 m²), and Bengaluru (+350,000 m²). Manilla added 240k square meters. Other top global financial districts had a net decline in demand: Los Angeles (-264,000 m²), San Francisco (-260,000 m²), Shanghai (-180,000 m²), Hong Kong (-49,000 m²), New York (-48,000 m²) and Sydney (-40,000 m²).



The reclaimed land and reef owned by Vietnam has grown by more than four times in less than one year. Some believe the purpose is to build an airfield to counter China’s influence of the South China Sea. China reclaimed and militarized three larger reefs in the South China Sea under Obama’s watch. A second Vietnam airfield off its coast would be a serious thorn in China’s side.



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