ASEAN’s Torn Over China-US Struggle. Will Mahathir Lead The Way?

The Singapore meeting starting Monday – the second Asean summit this year – will be Mahathir’s first since he stunned Asia by defeating his protégé Najib Razak in May elections to reoccupy the political hot seat he held from 1981 to 2003. Diplomatic observers are hoping the firebrand nonagenarian, a self-professed regionalist, will inject some vigour into […]

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Rethinking Belt-And-Road Debt

More than 75 nations participate in China’s Belt and Road Initiative, launched in 2013 to develop trade and connect Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe with ports, roads and railways. But some countries worry about adding to already heavy debt burdens, and some projects have become an issue in local politics. Among the most […]

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

  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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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Thailand Has A New King

The Kingdom has a new King after His Royal Highness Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn accepted an invitation to ascend the throne from the National Legislative Assembly president. The new King was formally named His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun, according to the Office of His Majesty’s Principal Private Secretary. Read Here – Bangkok Post

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