South Korea: The drama of the Winter Olympics comes to PyeongChang, South Korea, starting Feb. 9. But expect the real fireworks to unfold on Twitter between “Dotard” Trump and “Rocket Man” Kim next year.
China: Ottawa and Beijing officially declared 2018 the year of Canada-China tourism. Canada is opening new visa application centres in China. Meanwhile, on March 31, China plans to close loopholes in its “great firewall” to limit access to the web.
United Kingdom: A new royal baby is due in April (the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s second spare heir). But the most anticipated royal story of 2018: Prince Harry’s marriage to Meghan Markle.
Canada: Amazon will pick its next headquarters from a list of hundreds of North American cities. Canada’s best hope likely rests with Calgary.
Antarctica: For the second time, the British research station in Antarctica, Halley VI, will shut down for the polar winter between March and November due to two growing cracks in the ice shelf on which it sits.
Russia’s World Cup
Russia: The quadrennial and always controversial FIFA World Cup comes to Russia, with the final match scheduled for July 15 in Moscow. It will have cost $20 billion to host.
Mexico: Mexicans go to the polls to elect their next president in July. The front-runner is Andrés Manuel López Obrador, a populist left-wing leader. Don’t expect U.S.-Mexican relations to get any better.
Argentina: Buenos Aires will host the first G20 Summit in South America. Argentina purchased five refurbished fighter jets from France to help with summit security.
United Kingdom: Airbus will begin testing its battery-powered, four-passenger “flying taxi” by the end of the year. No talking about the weather with drivers: this taxi will eventually be fully autonomous.
Ireland: Ireland will hold a referendum in the summer on ending its ban on abortion. That will be followed, in August, by a visit from the Pope to attend the World Meeting of Families.
Trans fat ban
Canada: In September, Health Canada will ban all artificial trans fats from foods sold in the country. Connoisseurs of poutine and donuts take note.
Zimbabwe: Zimbabwe’s first post-Mugabe election is to take place by September. Will the country’s new president, Emmerson “the Crocodile” Mnangagwa, ensure it’s free and fair?
Another spoonful of sugar
United States: Mary Poppins Returns hits theatres on Dec. 25 and Hollywood’s obsession with reboots and rehashed ideas lives on. Merry Christmas.