The world at risk
Hot spots, fault lines, and events that might have an impact on global risk.
(FORTUNE Magazine) -- 1. Mexico Rapid approval of the 2007 budget, a well-targeted anti-crime initiative, and the launch of new social programs could boost Felipe Calderón's presidential credibility and support.
2. Nicaragua Despite newly inaugurated President Daniel Ortega's rhetoric against "savage capitalism," his first months in office are unlikely to reverse the economic gains made by his pro-market predecessors.
3. Saudi Arabia King Abdullah will reshuffle his cabinet and appoint a new Foreign Minister. The moves will strengthen the kingdom's alliance with the United States and lead to a tougher stance toward Iran.
4. Somalia The displacement from power of the Islamic Courts Union will not stabilize the troubled nation, but the threat of all-out war has probably passed. The U.S. military will step up maritime patrols off the Horn of Africa.
5. Turkmenistan The death of harsh, eccentric leader Saparmurat Niyazov will lead to some political uncertainty, but natural-gas flows should continue uninterrupted. The change could open the door to the gas sector.
6. Thailand Bangkok will remain on edge after a series of bombings and rumors of further attacks and possible countercoups, though investor sentiment is more likely to flag than public confidence in the military regime.