Geopolitics in the South China Sea: Expansionism in the Shadow of North Korean Drama

By Stephen Nagy / GeoPoliticalMonitor

The world’s attention has been captured by the political drama emanating out of Pyongyang and Washington. The cat-and-mouse posturing prior to a potential June summit that may lead to an incremental denuclearization over what is likely going to be a generation masks the critical and potential irreversible geopolitical machinations occurring in the South China Sea (SCS) as China expands its military, economic, and diplomatic influence in the region. Continue reading “Geopolitics in the South China Sea: Expansionism in the Shadow of North Korean Drama”

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China and India: on the ‘friend’ side of ‘frenemy’?

by Soyen Park / East Asia Forum / 16 May 2018

As Korean leaders Kim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in were charming the world walking hand in hand over the demarcation line to the north, another ‘heart-to-heart’ summit was happening in the central Chinese city of Wuhan — this one between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Billed as the ‘first informal summit’, the two-day get-together between Modi and Xi aimed to ‘reset’ China–India ties after years of mutual distrust. Not even a year ago, the world’s two most populous countries locked horns in a face-off at Doklam. But the dragon and the elephant seem to have agreed to settle their differences and dance to the tune of rising global uncertainties, at least for now. Continue reading “China and India: on the ‘friend’ side of ‘frenemy’?”

The misunderstood AIIB

by Shahar Hameiri and Lee Jones / The Interpreter / 17 May 2018

China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has been viewed through the wider debate over whether a rising China will overturn or uphold the US-led “rules-based liberal international order”. As the first significant international organisation established by China, the AIIB is often seen to indicate wider Chinese intentions.  Continue reading “The misunderstood AIIB”

Where is China targeting its development finance?

by China Power

China has emerged as one of the world’s largest providers of development finance. Between 2000 and 2014, China extended a total of $354 billion in loans, grants, and other resources to countries across the globe. As China continues to establish itself as a major source of development finance, it is important to consider how this spending intersects with Beijing’s growing political and economic interests. Continue reading “Where is China targeting its development finance?”

He’s back: Ma Ying-jeou rebuilds his popularity – might another run for Taiwan’s presidency be in store?

by Lawrence Chung/ 6 May 2018/ SCMP

Thousands of supporters packed a night market in Hualien in eastern Taiwan last month to try to get a glimpse of Ma Ying-jeou, the island’s former president.

Passionate fans even formed a queue at least 200 metres long to shake hands or have their photos taken with the ex-leader, who twice visited the city to show concern soon after a 6.4-magnitude earthquake wrecked Hualien in early February, killing 17 people and injuring 290 others. Continue reading “He’s back: Ma Ying-jeou rebuilds his popularity – might another run for Taiwan’s presidency be in store?”

Chinese Money Triggers a Dizzying Rally in Manila Property

May 4, 2018 / Bloomberg News

In Manila’s main financial district and its fringes, signs of the new inhabitants are everywhere: the restaurants serving steaming Chinese hotpots and dumplings, the Mandarin broadcasts at the Mall of Asia, and the soaring property prices. Continue reading “Chinese Money Triggers a Dizzying Rally in Manila Property”

Filipino English Teachers Become Popular Online

By Zhang Lijuan / May 3, 2018/ China Report ASEAN

“Thank you so much—you are like my second mom,” wrote a Chinese student to her Filipino English teacher. “I’m gonna be busy the next few days, so I cannot do the lessons. I will miss you, and I will be back very soon! I love you and will see you soon. Take care always.” A young woman who had been studying English for two years on 51Talk, a leading Chinese online English training organization, published her feelings about her teacher on jianshu.com, a website on which any registered user can post their creations. Continue reading “Filipino English Teachers Become Popular Online”

The Costs and Consequences of U.S. Tariff Policy

by Lucio Blanco Pitlo III

The use of tariffs to address the United States’ trade imbalance with key trade partners will hamper longstanding U.S. economic leadership. Bilateral negotiations with concerned trade partners and WTO mechanisms would provide a less disruptive approach to settling trade disputes. Unilateral imposition of tariffs may invite retaliatory measures and trigger a trade war, which may spiral out of control. Allies and partners may suffer collateral damage, regional and global production chains may be affected, and it may set an unhealthy precedent for other countries to emulate in resolving trade disputes with partners. Against the backdrop of U.S. withdrawal from the TPP and efforts to renegotiate NAFTA, KORUS and the U.S.-Japan FTA, the Trump administration’s tariff policy may only exacerbate doubts about enduring U.S. commitment to uphold established trade regimes. Continue reading “The Costs and Consequences of U.S. Tariff Policy”