8 global travel risks in 2020

From climate change protests to the US presidential election, these are the biggest geopolitical risks around the world this year.

A2 Global Risk has published its annual 2020 Global Forecast, examining major geopolitical trends in the coming year. 

Last year was a period of geopolitical volatility, but the report reveals that 2020 offers various opportunities for world leaders to resolve ongoing conflicts.

The report has named eight key risks for 2020:

1. Regional tensions

Traditional tensions between regional adversaries in the MENA region will likely de-escalate, in part due to a shift in US policy, says A2 Global Risk. Tensions between Iran and countries in the Gulf came to a head in 2019, with Tehran being accused of conducting attacks against Saudi Aramco oil facilities. 

After withdrawing forces from northern Syria, Washington has dismissed rumours that it is decreasing its presence in the Gulf.

2. Fake news

New tensions, fuelled by ‘fake news’, and other disinformation campaigns will emerge across many countries, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa as competing actors vie for more economic and political influence. 

3. Terrorism in the Sahel

Islamist non-state armed groups (NSAGs) loyal to Al-Qaeda and Islamic State have continued to expand in 2019. They have conducted increasingly sophisticated attacks against military targets, likely fuelled by the death of IS founder Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Particular security risks are in Burkina Faso and Mali.

4. US-China relations

After a year of turbulence, Sino-American trade tensions will ease as both parties are likely to formalise a new trade deal in early 2020. Donald Trump has said he will sign the first phase of a long-awaited trade deal with China on 15 January.

De-escalation in the US-China trade war will improve the prospects for global trade and likely lower the risk of an economic slowdown. 

5. US presidential election

The US presidential election in November 2020 will dominate the political agenda. A Democratic Party candidate will challenge incumbent President Donald Trump, who will focus his campaign on his economic policy track-record and seek to divert attention from the ongoing impeachment probe. 

The impeachment proceedings themselves are likely to fuel civil unrest.

6. Social unrest

Activists will continue to use media platforms to organise and mobilise over local socio-economic grievances. Social unrest will continue across large parts of Latin America and the Middle East. 

7. The Arctic

As concerns about climate change take the front seat in European politics, there will be increased geopolitical tensions between powers with a legal claim to the Arctic seabed. The melting Arctic ice will open up new trade routes and access to sea-bed energy sources, fuelling further competition. A build-up of military activity as posturing exercises is likely.

8. Climate change 

Increased public awareness over climate change, fuelled by a growing global protest movement, will be a strong incentive for domestic and global businesses to reduce their carbon footprint and rethink their corporate strategies.

International technology firms will become subject to increasing political and regulatory scrutiny as countries begin to develop and incorporate 5G networks. 

You can read the full report here.

For more features and breaking news sign up to C&IT Magazine's daily Newstracker here.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles
and free email bulletins.

Register now
Already registered?
Sign in
‘A damaging lack of trust’: Can agencies and DMCs improve their relationship?

‘A damaging lack of trust’: Can agencies and DMCs improve their relationship?

Incentive planners and DMCs discuss the need for more transparency in their working relationship.

C&IT launches incentives survey

C&IT launches incentives survey

Want to be recognised as one of the UK’s top incentive agencies? Complete this quick survey by 31st January.

You shouldn't have to eat junk food at events and go home 'feeling lousy'

You shouldn't have to eat junk food at events and go home 'feeling lousy'

Big changes to how long events affect our health and wellbeing are urgently needed, says a VP of BCD Meetings & Events.

Diary of a delegate: Undiscovered Azerbaijan

Diary of a delegate: Undiscovered Azerbaijan

Exploring the emerging destination’s modern and medieval experiences in Baku, Gabala and Sheki.

Brands at Work appoints new creative director

Brands at Work appoints new creative director

Senior hire brings experience from a range of sectors that will help the agency meet the evolving needs of clients.

In pictures: Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok opening March 2020

In pictures: Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok opening March 2020

The hotel at Chao Phraya River offers indoor and outdoor event spaces in the Thai capital.

Judges announced for C&IT Awards Americas

Judges announced for C&IT Awards Americas

The inaugural C&IT Awards Americas will be judged by a mix of regional and global event professionals.

Ditching ‘swag bags’ and tackling the problem of food waste

Ditching ‘swag bags’ and tackling the problem of food waste

Corporate event planners spoke about ways to reduce waste and make conferences more sustainable.

‘I thought having children would have no impact on my career in events’

‘I thought having children would have no impact on my career in events’

One event professional discusses the struggle to balance work and life as a mother of a two-year-old.

Six new recruits for Venues and Events International

Six new recruits for Venues and Events International

Swindon-based event agency expands its team, including return of two former employees, after new client wins.

LATEST JOBS