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looking beyond borders

foreign policy and global economy

Archive for the tag “Malaysia”

Xi Needs A Confucian Foreign Policy

Despite his aspirations to play the responsible world statesman, Xi’s foreign-policy record is filled with squabbles, misfires and unfulfilled promise. If he’s going to restore China to superpower status and cement its dominance in East Asia, he should take a cue from Chinese history about how to wield power.

Read Here – Bloomberg

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Malaysia’s Mahathir Pulls Off Second Political Act Just Like Churchill, Abe, Berlusconi And BiBi

With his shock victory in Malaysia’s election, Mahathir Mohamad has pulled off a political second act that few expected, joining the select ranks of politicians who have revived their careers. The 92-year-old former strongman ruled Malaysia with an iron fist for more than two decades before stepping down, but returned to political life to challenge his own former party, snatching a surprise win in Wednesday’s poll.

Read Here – AFP

Malaysia’s Unappetising Choice

That Malaysia is in a funk is hardly in doubt. Najib’s rule has been marred by accusations of cronyism, most obviously the farrago over sovereign wealth fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad, in which $4.5 billion is alleged to have been siphoned off by managers and associates, according to a U.S. Justice Department probe. The prime minister denies wrongdoing.

Read Here – Nikkei Asian Review

Singapore’s ASEAN Chairmanship: High Expectations For A High Achiever

Singapore skyline at night/Photo by Lily Ivnatikk on Unsplash

 

Singapore, this year’s ASEAN chair, faces some tough tasks. It must lift confidence in the organisation and inject the inspiration it needs to overcome a ‘midlife crisis’ while encouraging favourable conditions for continued economic growth. And it must do this in a time of geopolitical turbulence while trying to balance relations with the great powers. If anyone in the region can handle such pressure, it’s Singapore.

Read Here – The Strategist

The Next 50 Years Of ASEAN

Coming full circle on its 50th anniversary, ASEAN is now caught in a regional strategic environment similar to one that existed at its founding, defined by volatility, hostility, and superpower rivalry that pose a serious existential threat to the organization. Can ASEAN maintain its autonomy and reputation as a credible and cohesive unit capable of regional resilience in the 21st century?

Read Here – The Diplomat

50 Years Of ASEAN: ‘A’ Is For Angst

ASEAN is ever beset by existential angst. The ‘A’ in ASEAN stands for Angst as well as Association. Regard this as more description than criticism. The Angst-Association of South East Asian Nations always has lots to worry about. Angst and anxiety are rational responses. The questions are constant: can the association hold together? Can it actually do anything? Will ASEAN be crushed as it’s courted by the bigger beasts of Asia? Celebrating its 50th birthday in August, ASEAN pumps out celebration.

Read Here – The Strategist

Saudis Thinking Beyond Oil In Asia Courtship

China’s role and influence in global markets is a big lure to Saudi Arabia. It is the world’s largest energy consumer and the second-biggest importer of crude, after the U.S. Just like the Japanese, China is driven by its need to secure sources of energy. That gives Saudi Arabia an opportunity to solidify its market presence in Asia amid rising competition from Russia.

Read Here – Bloomberg

Saudis Sharpen Asian Focus With $65bn China Partnership

American disengagement from the Middle East is a factor behind Saudi Arabia’s turn to Asia. The kingdom relies on the U.S. for security. But that country needs Middle Eastern petroleum less nowadays, thanks to its exploitation of domestic shale oil and gas. Ties were further strained by the Obama administration’s overtures to Iran.

Read Here – Nikkei Asian Review

Killing Kim Jong Nam With VX Nerve Agent Crossed A ‘Red Line’

In 1995, Japan’s Aum Shinrikyo cult turned the nerve agent on a small number of its members, whom leaders believed to be police informants. On a larger scale, VX was one of the chemical weapons deployed in the Iran-Iraq war. The Kim Jong Nam case, though, would be the first VX assassination on record, and the first time chemical weapons were used to that end since a ricin pellet—fired from an umbrella gun—took Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov’s life in 1978.

Read Here – Wired

Which Asian Country Will Replace China As The ‘World’s Factory’?

China’s transition is opening space for other countries to move into low-cost manufacturing, where China until recently dominated. Deloitte predicts that the economies of Malaysia, India, Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam, the “Mighty Five” or MITI-V, will inherit China’s crown for such products. The consensus among industry and regional experts interviewed for this article is that India in particular will be the next top hub for low-cost manufacturing.

Read Here – The Diplomat

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