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What is political risk?

27 February, 2015 - 14:21

Political risk is generally defined as the risk to business interests resulting from political instability or political change. Political risk exists in every country around the globe and varies in magnitude and type from country to country. Political risks may arise from policy changes by governments to change controls imposed on exchange rates and interest rates (Barlett et al, 2004). Moreover, political risk may be caused by actions of legitimate governments such as controls on prices, outputs, activities, and currency and remittance restrictions. Political risk may also result from events outside of government controls such as war, revolution, terrorism, labor strikes, and extortion.

Political risk can adversely affect all aspects of international business from the right to export or import goods to the right to own or operate a business. AON, for example, categorizes risk based on economic; exchange transfer; strike, riot, or civil commotion; war; terrorism; sovereign non-payment; legal and regulatory; political interference; and supply chain vulnerability.