The next year could be the year when everything settles after the turbulence of 2017. Negotiations over Brexit could be fruitful and North Korea could end up in the negotiating table. Local elections in the United States could offer a referendum on the Trump administration. The 2018 year could spell the end of NAFTA. Fierce negotiations to refurbish trade agreements between Canada, US, and Mexico will be initiated in 2018. The aim is to arrive at a deal before the spring sun comes out. Problems are seen on the horizon on this aspect due to Trump's US prioritization above all else. The Trump administration cannot see beyond the reduction of the US trade deficit. In contrast, free trade in the region continues to be the priority for both Mexico and Canada.
The Trump administration has made a mess in America in 2017 and it is not expected to be better in 2018. The US Government has made a number of unorthodox government appointments and regulatory rollbacks in 2017. The government has made all preparations for destroying the rights of minorities and women. The investigation by FBI into Russian meddling in the US elections will go deeper into White House, resulting in increasingly erratic policies all around.
The United States, as usual, could be the cynosure of the world. The country, however, may see its influence wane on the world stage. Canada, its neighbor to the north, is rising swiftly in stature. This is due to Justin Trudeau, the charismatic Canadian Prime Minister. The Trudeau administration has promised 2018 to be of gender equality, climate change cooperation, and a renewed focus on world peace. For the United States, things are not looking rosy right now. Highly skilled professionals are leaving the country in droves. The principal beneficiary of this development, is Canada. The Toronto technology IPO boom may well happen in 2018.
In matters of Europe, there is no doubt that Vladimir Putin will remain the President for the next six years. It, however, remains to be seen how many votes will Ksenia Sobchak, the nominal opposition candidate, will get. There is also the important question of who will be the Prime Minister in the Putin administration. The choice will depend on Putin. Selecting an economist means the President is trying to shore up the stumbling Russian economy. However, if Putin selects a nobody for the job, it means that he is further consolidating his power base.