Last year marked an inflection point in the geopolitics of the 21st century, with the Biden administration declaring the post-Cold War era “definitively over” against the backdrop of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the U.S.-China strategic competition. That dynamic drove a range of national security and economic statecraft policies in 2022—notably including broad sanctions against Russia and semiconductor export controls regarding China—that will create heightened legal and business risks for companies with international supply and distribution chains. These risks will be particularly acute for companies and investors operating in highly regulated industries, including aerospace, defense, manufacturing, technology, and financial services. We highlight below five key geopolitical and international trade issues to watch in 2023.
1. Trade war becomes tech war.