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Geopolitics

With Belt and Road Projects, Consider the China Risk

Thursday 11th July 2019

China’s Belt and Road Initiative has been heralded as both the largest cooperative infrastructure programme in global history and an attempt by Beijing to achieve world domination. In reality, the opportunities and risks are more nuanced, writes George Abonyi, Senior Research Fellow and Visiting Professor, at the Sasin School of Management of Chulalongkorn University in Thailand.

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Geopolitics

Time for a European Response to China's Belt and Road

Thursday 11th July 2019

In response to China's Belt and Road Initiative, European countries should develop their own infrastructure program for emerging Asia-Pacific economies.

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Security

Denuclearizing North Korea: What Must Happen Next

Thursday 4th July 2019

Donald Trump’s surprise meeting with Kim Jong-Un in the De-Militarized Zone border area with South Korea has re-energized the dialogue between Washington and Pyongyang. The challenge for both sides is to translate this renewed contact into a meaningful continuation of the denuclearization process, writes Graham Ong-Webb, Adjunct Fellow at the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore.

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Geopolitics

The Power of Three: How US-China-Japan Dynamics Shape Asia Pacific

Thursday 4th July 2019

Japan could be the lynchpin the keeps US-China relations from going off the rails.

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Politics

Democratic Backsliding: Lessons from Interwar Japan

Wednesday 26th June 2019

Japan’s interwar period between 1925 and 1937 was marked by a gradual backsliding in the liberal democratic political system that had developed since the Meiji Constitution was adopted in 1889. Hiroyuki Yamamoto of Tokyo International University draws parallels between the heightened partisan politics of that time that gave way to anti-democratic forces and the unchecked party competition today in many countries including the US.

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Geopolitics

High-Speed Rail Rivalry: Can China and Japan Drive Sustainability?

Thursday 20th June 2019

This month, G20 leaders will endorse guiding principles for “quality infrastructure investment”, a priority for Japan. China’s support of these principles signals a willingness to address criticism of its Belt and Road Initiative. China and Japan, rivals in delivering high-speed rail, appear open to collaborating on projects that would meet high sustainability standards, writes Motoko Aizawa, President of the Observatory for Sustainable Infrastructure, who for 12 years headed the Policy and Standards Unit in the Environmental and Social Department of the International Finance Corporation (IFC).

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Economy

Splintering Global Supply Chains: Asia’s Worst Nightmare?

Thursday 13th June 2019

Disruption, diversification...decoupling?: The fracturing of global supply chains is a major concern for Asian economies

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Economy

G20 Alert: The Trade War Gets Existential

Thursday 13th June 2019

The fallout from the US-China trade battle and the collateral geo-economic disruptions are threatening global economic stability. G20 members meeting in Japan this month need to address the risk of a crisis. The US and China must call off the trade dogs of war – and quickly, writes George Magnus, Research Associate at both the China Centre of Oxford University and at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) of the University of London.

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Geopolitics

India in the World: Modi's Moment in the Sun – or the Shade?

Tuesday 11th June 2019

India’s desire to be taken seriously as a major international player is legitimate. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s supporters are counting on him to secure the nation’s position as a global power. But his handling of domestic problems and relations with Pakistan and other neighbors raises questions about whether Modi is the man to put India irrevocably on the world map, writes Mumbai-born journalist and author Salil Tripathi.

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Politics

How the Rules-Based International Order Took Root

Tuesday 11th June 2019

The US and China differ in their perceptions of what a rules-based international order should be.

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Economy

Could the US and China Have Avoided Escalating Their Trade War?

Thursday 6th June 2019

The rise in trade tensions between the US and China may be due to the American side’s failure to appreciate the implications of China’s not being a rule-of-law country – that administrative action, not laws on the books, get things done in China, writes Zhiwu Chen, Director of the Asia Global Institute (AGI) and Victor and William Fung Professor in Economics at the University of Hong Kong (HKU).

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Politics

Acche Din, Redux: The Business Outlook for Modi’s Second Term

Thursday 30th May 2019

The resounding election triumph of the ruling BJP gives Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi a strong second mandate and a fresh opportunity to make his ambitious dreams for India a reality, says Hong Kong-based strategic adviser and entrepreneur Alan Rosling, the author of "Boom Country?: The New Wave of Indian Enterprise".

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Politics

Modi 2.0: Old Problems and New Possibilities

Thursday 30th May 2019

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's blend of hyper-nationalism with a welfare-state development narrative successfully bolstered his claim to be the “only man for the job”. It has also given his party wider and deeper appeal, solidifying its national footprint. Armed with a strengthened mandate, Modi could propel India forward to take a leadership role in Asian affairs, writes New Delhi-based Preeti Singh, Senior Advisor at 9.9 Insights.

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Geopolitics

Staying the Course: Australia Set to Continue Asia-Pacific Strategy

Thursday 23rd May 2019

Australia faces a range of complex geopolitical and security challenges, which include managing its close strategic and economic ties with the United States and its important trading relationship with China. The unexpected election victory of Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s center-right Coalition government means that Canberra is likely to maintain its current foreign and defense policies, writes John Blaxland of Australian National University (ANU).

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Health

How Asia Can Avoid the Lifestyle Drug Trap

Wednesday 15th May 2019

In a fast-paced high-growth economy – picture any big city in Asia – urban professionals are under pressure to “get back to work” even when they feel ill. The resulting demand for “fast-fix” remedies could lead to over-prescription and societal ills. Opioid abuse that is plaguing the United States and other Western countries could well become a major problem in Asia. Governments and pharmaceutical companies in the region should continue to focus on driving innovation in the development of treatments and resist the temptation to pursue the easy profits of the lifestyle-drug approach, Kathryn Ibata-Arens from DePaul University writes.

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Population & Society

How New Rules Aim to Reduce Slave Labor in Asia

Thursday 9th May 2019

The complex nature of global supply chains means that using exploitative labor at any stage, even indirectly, may harm a company's brand and risk legal liability. Consumers do not want to be associated with trafficked workers and will shun goods produced with slave labor. Nations are passing laws to address this problem. Mandatory reporting of anti-slavery actions may provide some protection for both businesses and workers.

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Geopolitics

Chinese Waves: The Limits to Beijing’s Influence in the South Pacific

Thursday 2nd May 2019

China’s engagement with the states of the South Pacific Ocean has accelerated in recent years. But while policymakers and academics in Australia, New Zealand and Pacific island states increasingly talk about China’s growing influence, Beijing actually operates in the region under a number of constraints and there are limits on the role it can play.

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Health

Instagram and the Psychological Perils of Social Comparisons

Thursday 25th April 2019

With more than 1 billion active users, Instagram has become one of the fastest growing social media brands. But as the platform grows more popular, so too its links with poor mental health become more apparent. The Asia-Pacific region, a social media growth hotspot, is already seeing increasing levels of anxiety and depression – but it is also taking measures to deal with the problem.

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