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Around the globe, people enjoy the escapism, art, and joy brought about by the media and entertainment industry. In the United States alone, entertainment is worth $717 billion, a third of the entire world market. This monumental number continues to grow, with predictions that the industry will grow by over $100 billion more dollars by 2023. Which areas within this vast industry pull in the largest amounts of dollars?

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During the Coronavirus pandemic, few industries have been hit as hard as transportation. With the reduction in travel due to shutdowns, the airline industry has served far fewer customers. Last year, the TSA noted over two million travelers almost every single day. During March of this year, the number of travelers had been reduced to under 100,000 on some days. That is less than 5% of the same day one year prior. While there has been a slow increase over the last few months, there has not been a day with more than a million travelers since March 16th. In June, the International Air Transport Association even predicted the air transport industry to lose 84.3 billion dollars during this year alone. They state that the amount being saved in reduced costs is nowhere near the massive losses in revenue.

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2020 has been an extremely volatile year. The year started with stock markets hitting all-time highs before the Coronavirus pandemic closed down much of the world’s economy, negatively hitting many industries. The insurance industry, despite taking on large amounts of risk when writing policies, is considered to be pretty safe and stable. How has it held up to the pressure applied this year?

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The coronavirus outbreak has spread into countries all across the globe. Despite international efforts to engage in social distancing, the number of people with the virus has continued to rise. The coronavirus, which is most dangerous to the elderly, has now has infected over one and a half million people globally. It has been the cause of a massive shutdown of businesses, as well as a massive drop in the stock market.

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As the cold winter begins to thaw into spring, massive arrays of green hues appear. Everything from the Chicago River to outlandish hats turns bright green on St. Patrick’s Day. In the United States, the holiday is a massively popular celebration of everything Irish. Given the substantial Irish population in America, which is many times larger than Ireland itself, it makes sense that St. Patrick’s Day is such a treasured holiday. The celebration is derived from the Catholic saint who lived around the fifth century, St. Patrick, who was enslaved and taken to Ireland. Upon getting out of slavery, he became a priest. Using this position, he returned to Ireland to successfully convert many to Christianity.

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Early into the new year, waves of protests have emerged in Canada. Indigenous activists have begun to organize demonstrations to object the construction of a 670-kilometer pipeline (the Coastal GasLink pipeline) that passes through indigenous lands. One native group that opposes the project is known as the Wet'suwet'en, located out of British Columbia. The Wet'suwet'en did propose alternate routes to Coastal Gaslink, but the routes were rejected in favor of a path that was more technically viable and minimized environmental impact. Coastal Gaslink claims to have consulted with Aboriginal groups in the process of planning the route.

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There has finally been a development in one of the largest international stories of the last decade. Ever since the vote to leave the European Union in the 2016 referendum, the United Kingdom has been in the process of planning its departure. After numerous delays, the early general election was held in December of 2019. The Conservative Party, which ran on the promise of delivering Brexit, dominated the election, gaining the majority of Parliament. With this newfound Conservative majority, the United Kingdom officially left the European Union on January 31st. This made them the first country to leave the European Union, after having been a member for 47 years.

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The United States has a long and controversial history within the Middle East. The U.S. maintains a large military presence in the region that has persisted for decades. The most recent conflict began early into the new year with the killing of the Iranian General Qasem Soleimani on Friday, January 3rd, an attack that was ordered by the United States military and Commander in Chief, Donald Trump. The U.S. Department of Defense stated that the general was part of a “Foreign Terrorist Organization... responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American and coalition service members.” The Supreme Leader of Iran called for revenge, and Iran shot missiles towards United States bases stationed in the Middle East, though they resulted in no casualties. Unfortunately, Iran did shoot down a civilian airplane, killing 176 in the process. While initially denying the attack, Iran admitted accidentally striking down the plane which contained many Canadian and Iranian citizens, stating they believed it was a cruise missile. 

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With the happiest time of the year just around the corner, people around the globe are beginning to prepare for their holiday traditions. Some plan trips to see family, while others are out shopping for gifts. Decorations are springing up, and joyous Christmas songs echo across the radio. Throughout many countries, people are beginning to prepare for Christmas and other holidays with dinners and meals. This might be through reservations at restaurants or orchestrating intricate meal plans.

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Movies are a universally loved medium. Since the early creation of the moving image, crowds have gathered to watch immersive stories unfold upon the screen. With technological advancements, the accessibility of movies has drastically expanded. What formerly had to be seen at theaters can be viewed at home through DVDs and streaming platforms. It has never been easier to view a large variety of films, both from native and foreign countries. For those in China, however, the selection and variety of movies is extremely restricted.

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The International Business Knowledge Quiz, located in the Tools and Data tab on the globalEDGE website, has been recently updated. Questions more accurately reflect the most up to date information and statistics, in addition to some minor grammatical fixes. The quiz is a great way to learn about numerous countries and global business partnerships. With a test bank of around 100 different questions, the quiz can be taken multiple times while still offering new information. 

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The preservation of natural environments and resources is immensely important in the most universal of ways. Preservation helps to stabilize and ensure the habitability of different regions, while also protecting the rest of the earth from rapid changes in the climate. While this is reason enough to advocate protection of the wilderness, destruction of natural areas can negatively impact the economy by disrupting supply systems and resource production. For these reasons, it is crucially important to observe and respond to natural disasters and threats as they occur.

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Tobacco has been a large industry ever since it was brought to Europe centuries ago. The American plant took off in popularity, becoming a commonly used product worldwide to be smoked and chewed. One of the primary factors causing tobacco consumption is the addictive nicotine found inside. Smoking continued to rise in popularity until its peak in 1963, where roughly 11 cigarettes were purchased per person per day in the United States. Other countries appeared to have a slightly later peak in popularity for smoking. In 1972, Switzerland approached its peak, resulting in Swiss smoking temporarily surpassing the rates of the U.S. Other countries, such as Germany and Japan, also experienced their highest rates in the 1970s. The United States and Switzerland had significant declines in sales after their peaks, though many other countries did not experience these rapid declines in cigarette sales until the early 2000s. Nowadays, many countries that have the highest rates of smoking tend to be in Europe, such as France, Germany, and Greece.

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It’s undeniable that the internet has dramatically altered the world. From expanding access to new information to revolutionizing the entertainment industry, practically no element of modern culture and life has been untouched. With over 4 billion people (or 55.1% of the global population) using the internet, more and more importance is being placed on the digital landscape. At a time where television is losing 33 million subscriptions over the course of 2018 in the United States alone, more and more advertisers are seeing potential in the digital sphere.

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The world has been gripping the edge of its seat watching the protests continuing in Hong Kong. Hong Kong has had a long and complex history with its relationship to China19th-century conflicts led to the colonization by Britain, removing the territory from Chinese control. Hong Kong was returned to China a century later, being allowed to control many of its own systems. The wildly different forms of government (Communist China as opposed to the limited democratic Hong Kong) have led to culturally and politically different regions. The 2019 protests have not been the first occasion where citizens of Hong Kong rallied against governmental decisions. In 2014, over 100,000 people protested Chinese intervention into their election process.