Skip to main content
main content, press tab to continue
Survey Report

Political Risk Survey Report 2024

How are leading companies managing today’s political risks?

By Sam Wilkin | May 22, 2024

Our 2024 Political Risk Survey explores how companies are managing rising geopolitical challenges.
Credit and Political Risk
Geopolitical Risk

Our 7th annual political risk survey found that the general sentiment of alarm measured last year among companies has been channeled into preparedness. Some 96% of respondents said they have invested in new political risk management capabilities this year, including enhancement of corporate processes and creation of cross-functional teams.

Are we more accepting of political risk and its impact?

As the 2020s dawned, there was perhaps a tendency towards denial. In our 2020 survey, only 30% of respondents said they were concerned about political violence risks. Three years later, as the conflict in Ukraine escalated dramatically, 50% reported experiencing an actual loss from that peril.

Similarly, in 2022, respondents said they were more concerned about political risk in Asia than in Europe, even though the survey was conducted as Russian troops massed on the Ukrainian border. In 2023 and this year, somewhat belatedly, concerns about political risk in Europe topped the charts.

If we may be permitted to read a story into the trends in our survey numbers over the past seven years, between 2022 and 2023 many of our respondents shifted from denial into shock. According to our survey, political risk losses of all kinds soared in 2023 (not just political violence). The impact of the Ukraine conflict was felt through currency inconvertibility (as transfer restrictions were placed on Russian rubles and Ukrainian Hryvnia), via a rise in losses attributed to Western sanctions, and even an uptick in expropriations (as the Russian government nationalized foreign investments).

Perhaps understandably, in the 2023 survey, shocked respondents tended to see disaster looming around every corner. For every geopolitical trend we queried, close to half our survey sample claimed the trend would “greatly strengthen”. That may have been an overreaction, given that we asked about a diverse set of trends ranging from populism to a political focus on inequality.

Perhaps we might say that in this year’s survey, we are reaching the acceptance phase of political risk loss? “There is perhaps more awareness … of ‘black swan events’ – those that can be envisioned but not predicted – and thus more awareness of how to envisage this type of event and how to establish company systems that would prove resilient in such cases,” as one of our in-depth interviewees, in the U.S. food and beverages sector, put it.

When I began working for my firm a few years ago, geopolitical risk was effectively an afterthought behind, for instance, market intelligence.”

Survey interviewee | Healthcare sector

“When I began working for my firm a few years ago, geopolitical risk was effectively an afterthought behind, for instance, market intelligence,” said an interviewee in the healthcare sector. “Since then, the COVID-19 pandemic, the Russia-Ukraine war and the situation around Taiwan are prime examples of what has made geopolitical risk functions far more recognized and important in the company’s thinking.”

The panicked 2023 view that every adverse geopolitical trend will “greatly strengthen” has abated. There is now differentiation: in our 2024 poll, 30% of respondents see “geostrategic competition” as greatly strengthening, but for most other geopolitical trends, roughly 15% – or less – think so.

At the same time, respondents are far from sanguine about political risk. An overwhelming 96% said they have added new political risk management capabilities this year. More than 70% reported experiencing a political risk loss. Large majorities reported concern about political risk in Asia, Europe, Russia, the Middle East and North America.

The heyday of the global rules-based order appears to be over. Geopolitics is now more volatile and less kind to globalized business. Large majorities predict that trends such as geostrategic competition, economic nationalism, democratic backsliding, and populism will increase in 2024 (along with lesser-known threats such as “gray zone aggression”). Our respondents appear to accept that political risk loss is a tangible possibility, but few are sounding the retreat from globalization just yet.

What specific issues are of concern to our respondents?

As with previous years, we conducted in-depth interviews in addition to our broader survey.

It's difficult to mitigate this threat because business leaders don't grasp just how unstable the West has become.”

Survey interviewee | Mining sector

Undoubtedly, not everyone has reached the acceptance phase of political risk loss – at least, not for every business function, or every type of risk. “The biggest challenge related to all this is internal,” an interviewee in the mining sector claimed. “It’s difficult to mitigate this threat because business leaders don’t grasp just how unstable the West has become. They’ve built their assumptions and understanding of the world during several decades of relative stability, and don’t really appreciate that a way of thinking and planning that enabled them to be successful then won’t work anymore.”

The full results can be accessed via the form on the right. We hope you enjoy this edition of our political risk survey and find the contributions of these expert analysts to be as valuable and thought-provoking as we have. If you have any questions please do get in touch.


Director of Political Risk Analytics, Financial Solutions


Director, Financial Solutions
email Email

Contact us