World should not ignore likelihood of Trump’s presidency in US polls


US former president and 2024 potential presidential candidate Donald Trump. PHOTO |  AFP

The one occurrence that would have the greatest impact on geopolitical and geoeconomic settings is the likelihood of Donald Trump’s election to the US presidency later this year.

A possibility that cannot be ignored or ruled out, going by the look of political ongoings in the US. Judging by his last term in office, Trump has a predictable capacity to surprise the world with far-reaching changes aimed at asserting American global economic and political supremacy.

Always a “climate denier”, Trump would be expected to have no time or patience for climate policies and actions, choosing instead to adopt pragmatic and nationalistic economic roadmaps that disregard ongoing climate threats. He would maximise US benefits from fossil fuels production, having recently vowed that, if elected, America would “drill, drill, and drill”. 

The US would edge out the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) cartel as the leader and influencer of global oil and gas supply chains and prices.

And where the US has a sustainable edge in renewable technologies, Trump would seek to outdo China in control of critical energy minerals supply chains and markets. He would likely view renewables in terms of economic opportunities more than climate solutions.

Trump was never a global team player, and fears are that his return will more than likely weaken the Global North economic, political, and military alliances (G7, OECD, and Nato), which President Biden has been reviving over the past three years. 

This would be a welcome development by Russia, China and Iran, which have been developing an alternative geopolitical grouping, as the “cold war” gains momentum.

Trump presidency would certainly be welcomed by the strongmen of this world (Putin, Netanyahu, Mohamed Bin Salman, Erdogan), with the Ukrainian and Middle East conflicts taking different turns.

Unless for defined strategic economic gains like raw materials and minerals, a Trump presidency would likely have no time for Africa and Global South in general, allowing China a free hand to continue cementing its economic, political, and even military ties with Global South, a trend that President Biden was intent on disrupting. 

Multilateral budgetary support for crumbling Global South economies would attract less sympathy from a Trump presidency. Global South trade and investment deals with the US would require a much higher hurdle to clinch.

Yes, it is too early in the year, but the decisions and choices the Americans make in November will determine the trajectory this world will take in the future.

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Note: The results are not exact but very close to the actual.