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World richest billionaires take massive hits as fortunes decline by $1.4 trillion in 2022

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The year 2022 is turning out to be a bad year for world’s richest billionaires including Tesla and SpaceX boss, Elon Musk, Chief Executive Officer of Amazon, Jeff Bezos and Mark Zuckerberg, the Chief Executive Officer of Meta, as they have seen their fortunes take massive hits with their wealth dropping to as much as a combined $1.4 trillion.

Bloomberg reports that Musk alone has seen his fortune plunging by almost $62 billion while Bezos saw his wealth tumble by about $63 billion, just as Zuckerberg’s net worth dropped by more than half.

The Bloomberg report also noted that the world’s 500 richest people lost the whopping $1.4 trillion in the first half of 2022 alone which marked the steepest six-month drop ever for the global billionaire class, while there are fears that the volatility could continue in the second half of the year.

The decline is a sharp departure from the previous two years, when the fortunes of the ultra-rich swelled as governments and central banks unleashed unprecedented stimulus measures in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, juicing the value of everything from tech companies to cryptocurrencies, the report stated.

Musk still has the biggest fortune on the planet at $208.5 billion, while Amazon’s Bezos is second with a $129.6 billion net worth, with Bernard Arnault, France’s richest person, ranked third with a $128.7 billion fortune, followed by Bill Gates with $114.8 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Changpeng Zhao, the crypto pioneer who debuted on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index in January with an estimated fortune of $96 billion, has seen his wealth tumble by almost $80 billion this year amid the turmoil in digital assets.

At the start of the year, only four billionaires were worth more than $100 billion with 10 people worldwide exceeding that amount, including Zuckerberg, who is now 17th on the wealth list with $60 billion, the report said.

Musings From Abroad

Germany joins France, Egypt, withdraws troops from peacekeeping mission in Mali. Here’s why

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The trend of breaking diplomatic relations between Mali and the rest of the world has continued.

In the latest on the trend, Germany announced Friday that it was suspending its participation in a United Nations peacekeeping mission in Mali.

Germany’s announcement comes after the West African nation refused to grant a civilian aircraft carrying German troops permission to use its airspace.

According to Germany’s defense minister, Christine Lambrecht, her Malian counterpart, Sadio Camara, had not adhered to agreements to use its airspace.

Recall that Germany earlier in the year announced that it was drawing down its participation in a European Union military mission in Mali after France pulled out.

Last month, North African country, Egypt also announced plans to withdraw its troops from Mali by mid-August following deadly attacks against its peacekeepers.

But Germany continued to provide troops to the UN’s MINUSMA peacekeeping mission in the West African nation.

Mali under the current Junta of Colonel Goita has been on a thread of breaking diplomatic relations with allies.

It started by breaking defense alliance with the French, the junta also quit the anti-jihadist force, G-5 force but has enjoyed good relationship with Russia.

Berlin has deployed some 1,000 troops to Mali, most of them near the northern town of Gao where their main task is to gather reconnaissance for the U.N. peacekeeping mission MINUSMA.

Mali has been in the eye of terror storm since  war started in January 2012 between the northern and southern parts of Mali in Africa with several insurgent groups, Jihadist and separatist fighters with affiliations with Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group

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Musings From Abroad

What next? As US Secretary, Anthony Blinken, ends African tour

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The United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken has concluded three-nation tour of Africa where he articulated the US new strategy for engaging with sub-Saharan African nations as “equal partners”.

Blinken boarded Thursday a plane to leave Kigali, Rwanda, his last stop having visited the Democratic Republic of Congo and attempted to intervene in the diplomatic tension between the East African neighbours.

Despite having seek support from the continent’s 54 countries in efforts to isolate Russia over its Ukraine invasion, the US official in his recent visit said “Uncle Sam” will not dictate Africa’s choices.

Blinken took part in several meetings with members of the Rwandan government, discussing issues such as democracy, human rights concerns and the on-going tensions between Rwanda and the DRC.

“There are very credible reports of support for armed groups by all sides, including the FDLR, by Congolese forces and M23, by Rwandans, US’s top diplomat said. Our position is clear, whoever it’s by, whoever it’s to, that support needs to cease for any armed group.”

Despite a meeting between Kagame and Tshisekedi in Angola last month ties between the neighbors remain strained.

Blinken visit to Africa is the latest in the recent visits by international representatives. Recall  that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavlov and French President Emmanuel Macron’s travel recently visited. Ukraine also announced that its foreign minister will soon be visiting in a yet to be announced that.

 

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