MAP: Where elections are scheduled in the second half of 2017

Courtesy of Standard Chartered, here’s a useful map of where elections are scheduled to take place worldwide in the second half of the year.

Source: Standard Chartered

The busiest region is Europe with Germany’s federal election scheduled for September 24. That will be followed a week later by a proposed referendum on Catalonian independence from Spain, due to held on May 1.

Standard Chartered deems the latter to be a “high risk” event, should it indeed take place.

Here’s its assessment:

Even ahead of the proposed referendum, a fierce legal and political battle will ensue, with repercussions for other regions that enjoy different levels of autonomy from the central government. The outcome of the referendum, if it proceeds, would lead to further legal and political disputes. The government in Madrid has stated that the referendum is illegal and any regional attempts at secession are unconstitutional. Its position on this has broad support in the national parliament – across party lines – as well as in Spain’s constitutional court.

The country could be on a collision course, with the central government expected to launch a legal challenge against any Catalan law that provides a basis for the referendum. Following recent legal precedents and the known interpretation of Spanish courts, any legal challenge to the referendum would likely be upheld. This could trigger a crisis, with the Catalan government in a position of open defiance of the country’s judiciary. A heavy-handed response from the central government (i.e., suspending the region’s self-governance and running it from Madrid) could broaden support for independence and force European partners into the conversation.

On the German federal election, Standard Chartered is less concerned about the outcome, suggesting that recent polling points to to the likelihood that Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU coalition will retain power.