World Leaders To Watch In 2018

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While global economies are shifting gear, traditional values are up for a trial, some of the influential leaders of the world can practically change the fabric of the world politics rather considerably. Ranked on top of the list of Forbes most Influential People in the World, these people have the power to change the lives of millions of people around the world.

Vladimir Putin, Russian President

The name says it all. Putin has been the president of Russia for 4 terms consecutively and is ranked on No 1 in the Forbes List of 2018. Putin has undoubtedly exerted his influential presence in every corner of the world, be it Syrian conflict or US president election. Though a re-election is due in March 2018 in Russia, and the opposition leader is undoubtedly gaining popularity, yet Putin’s victory is imminent.

Vladimir Putin

If ‘strongman’ Putin gets re-elected, his power may go largely unbridled for years to come by, especially considering his alleged alliance with US President! Though some opine that his extended regime would mean further domestic repression, and aggressive foreign stance.

Donald J Trump, US President

The first ever billionaire and tycoon, President Donald Trump’s entry into the White House in January 2017 was no less than a political shocker for the world. Trump has his two sons deal with his business while he is in office.

Donald Trump

Trump’s twitter chatter has been in news for all the wrong reasons around the world, but his policies as a President, including his stance on immigrants, have far reaching consequences and continue to divide opinion.

Angela Markel, German Chancellor

Merkel has been a noted figure in the current political scene. Merkel won a hard fought election and continues to hold tight to the EU while facing flack for her stand on Brexit, and the growing anti-immigrant sentiments in all of the Europe.

Angela Markel

While Germany’s economy saw an upswing in its GDP after slide in 2015, Angela has held a strong position in world politics.

Xi Jinping, Communist Party, China

Xi Jinping is at par with the “core” leaders of Communist Party, i.e. Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping. Xi has a rather positive public profile. After his election as President in 2012, Xi has fought against corruption and implemented privatization-friendly reforms also eyeing financial and security alliances.

Xi Jinping

He is exerting his clout over the political affairs in Hong Kong and Taiwan and has been engaged in strategic confrontations in Southern Chinese borders. China’s proactive display of power has rattled quite a many brows in the global political arena.

Kim Jon-un, President, North Korea

Ever since Kim Jon-un was elected as the supreme leader, North Korea has captured global spotlight, thanks to his display of nuclear power, nuclear tension is pitch high around the world. The young dictator has also dominated international media, thanks to his furrowed spat with Donald Trump.

 kim-jong-un

Since North Korea is set to host 2018 Winter Olympics, there are high hopes that the tension between North Korea, South Korea and USA will soften considerably.

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli Prime Minister

Ranked on number 20 in the Forbes list of highly influential people, Netanyahu is in his fourth term as Israel’s prime minister. His rigid security stance, unwarranted relationship with neighboring Palestine, a war against Gaza that killed over 2000 people, and the disputed settlements in West Bank, denial of aid to Palestinian refugees have earned him harsh criticism internationally. Unflinching support from US has proven but encouraging for Israel.

Benjamin Netanyahu

Although, political turbulence has little effect on Israeli economy, the nation of 8 million people boasts of being a ‘start-ups nation’ with highest number of startups per capita. His image is threatened under the allegations of bribery and corruption.

Recep Tayyib Erdogan

Tayyib Erdogan became the President of Turkey in 2014. His vision for a younger Turkey, his welcoming stance on refugees and humanitarian aid towards the Rohingyas have solidified his political presence. Erdogan has been exerting his sway on world politics by voicing out sharp criticism against Qatar crisis. His foreign policies, and unrelenting relationship with EU and US have made Erdogan one of the influential political figures. Although back in home, he is criticized for stamping out protests and jailing political opponents, academia and journalists.

With these names dominating the world politics, we leave you with enough fodder to think and shape up your stance. Though names like Britain’s Theresa May, Late King of Arab, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and his son Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, Emmanuel Macaron of France, Prime Minister of India Narender Modi, etc. are also quite a fascinating bunch of people with power. However, it will be interesting to see how the fabric of the world Politics shapes up in 2018.

The views expressed are the author’s own.

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