How different the world looks at the start of 2017 from the view we had a year ago.
It was to be business as usual for Prime Minister David Cameron following an uneventful referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU; business as usual would prevail in the US primaries and presidential election; and business as usual would keep Prime Minister Matteo Renzi in power in Italy, Chancellor Angela Merkel secure in Berlin, and President Hollande safe at the Elysee.
We now face an unpredictable future for British trading relations with Europe, unpredictable general elections in key European countries (who listens to pollsters these days?), and – thus – an unpredictable future for the EU and the Eurozone.
We also await an unpredictable US president keen to tear up NAFTA, ride roughshod over environmental concern, take on China, dance to a different tune with Russia, air his strategy on Twitter and at the same time thrive on keeping everyone guessing.
Difficult times lie ahead, too, for India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi who, on the one hand has done what many before him failed to do and made a key surgical strike on corruption, while on the other hand has alienated himself from the many millions of people for whom a cashless society is unimaginable and unworkable.
And so whilst 2016 has much to answer for, 2017 has much on which to deliver.
Clearly, forecasting is challenging, especially when apparently sound forecasts can be so brutally disrupted by events.
Thus our annual ‘Guide to the automotive world’ seeks not (only) to forecast but to set the scene for the global automotive industry in the year ahead.
2017 promises to be a turbulent year for automotive industry stakeholders. Through exclusive interviews with and articles by analysts and industry representatives, ‘Guide to the automotive world in 2017‘ highlights the opportunities and threats facing the automotive industry in 2017, a year in which decisions will be made that will shape business in general and the automotive industry in particular for decades to come.
Business as usual? Not so much.