Asean morning news for January 28

Asean morning news for January 28

Asean morning newsAsean morning news

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu          @stmarisewudolu


Competition: Help empower Asean’s bright future with a video, but be quick (video)
Young videographers throughout Asean will have to work quick if they want to submit entries in this year’s ASEAN Youth Video Contest, with first round submissions closing on February 19.
— AEC News Today (video)

Regional entrepreneurs begin mentoring course ahead of field trials
A programme to mentor 100 Asean entrepreneurs ahead of the pilot field deployment of sustainable programmes that provide long term community and economic benefits gotten underway at Thailand’s Chulalongkorn University earlier this week.
— AEC News Today

As questions are raised about ‘belt and road’, projects slow in Southeast Asia
China is reshaping the approach of its flagship “Belt and Road Initiative” in Southeast Asia, as Chinese projects in the region plunged last year amid growing global scrutiny of Beijing’s development strategy.
— South China Morning Post

Trade conflict impact lessened by rise of Asean+3 demand: study
With structural shifts in regional value chains, the Asean+3 region — including the 10 Asean countries as well as China, Japan, and South Korea — has itself become a key source of final demand for the region, which should also cushion it from external trade conflicts such as that between the United States and China, said the Asean+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO) in a Jan 21 policy issue note.
— The Business Times

PH-based businesses most optimistic in ASEAN: survey
Philippine-based businesses are the most optimistic in Southeast Asia in terms of outlook on the local economy this year, according to Grant Thornton’s International Business Report (IBR).
— Philippine News Agency

The Asia Reassurance Initiative Act and ASEAN
On December 31, 2018, US President Donald Trump signed the “Asia Reassurance Initiative Act” or ARIA into law after it was approved by the Senate on December 19, 2018.
— Asean Briefing

‘Economic downturn’ Bruneians’ top concern
RESPONDENTS from Brunei Darussalam to a recent regional survey have pinpointed “economic downturn” as the top security challenge in Southeast Asia.
— Borneo Bulletin

Can a sugar tax dent Malaysia’s sweet tooth?
With the noble goal of pushing a country’s population towards healthier alternatives, the sugar tax is a much-debated topic.
— The Asean Post

Southeast Asia Has A $2.7 Trillion Choice To Make
For many years Southeast Asia has been a cautionary tale for what not to do in terms of energy sector economics.

America Lost Vietnam but Saved Southeast Asia
America got into World War II because of Vietnam. When the Japanese conquered what was then French Indochina in September 1941, the U.S. replied with severe economic sanctions, which convinced the Japanese that America was hostile and might use its fleet to block Tokyo’s conquest of Southeast Asia.
— Wall Street Journal

Bringing Fun to Financial Literacy in Asia
Despite being a necessary life skill that has grown in importance in today’s complex world, financial literacy is still often seen as boring. Additionally, on the surface, it may seem that the need for financial literacy is greater in emerging economies, but it is truly a global problem, as only a third of adults worldwide show an understanding of basic financial concepts.
— Brink Asia

Commentary: The next frontier for Southeast Asia’s growth? Digital skills
As the 2018 ASEAN Chair, Singapore deserves high praise for driving forward a resilient and innovative ASEAN community as well as bringing about several agreements designed to invigorate the region’s digital economy.
— Channel NewsAsia

ASEAN leaders and the Chinese zodiac
In the coming month of February, we will usher in the Chinese Lunar New Year, otherwise known as the Spring Festival.
— The Asean Post

Saving the Indochinese tiger
Tigers once roamed wild and free across the jungles of the world. As apex predators, life was good.
— The Asean Post


Cambodia morning newsCambodia morning news

Compiled by Piseth Pov          @piseth6666


Disturbing: Cambodia police shoot land protester in Sihanoukville (video)
As Cambodia heads towards a head-on crash with the European Union (EU) and the United States government over political freedom and human rights, disturbing video has emerged of Cambodia police shooting at protestors in Sihanoukville, in the country’s southwest.
— AEC News Today

Cambodia’s bid to be ‘New Macau’ stirs old wounds as Chinese cash in
A businessman leaves a smoky room US$1,500 (S$2,040) poorer from a game of baccarat at a casino in Sihanoukville – an increasingly common scene in the Cambodian beachtown as it becomes a honeypot for Chinese gamblers and investors at a pace worrying marginalised locals.
— The Strait Times

Redundant agencies to be ‘removed’: Prime Minister
In a bid to reduce costs for businesses and make Cambodian products more competitive, the government will eliminate several district-level agencies as well as Kampuchea Shipping Agency and Brokers, also known as Kamsab.
— Khmer Times

See here for more of today’s Cambodia morning news


Indonesia morning newsIndonesia morning news

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu          @stmarisewudolu


Indonesia Scouts for Investment Targets for $8 Billion Hajj Fund
Indonesia is seeking new avenues to deploy a part of its $8 billion Hajj funds.
— Bloomberg

Indonesia death toll from floods, landslides climbs to 68
At least 68 people have been killed and nearly 7,000 forced to take refuge in emergency shelters after floods, landslides and a tornado battered the Indonesian island of Sulawesi in the past week, authorities said on Sunday.
— Bangkok Post (annoying pop-ups)

Indonesian president grants remission to a journalist’s murderer
Indonesian president Joko Widodo’s move to grant remission to I Nyoman Susrama, the convicted mastermind behind the murder of Radar Bali journalist Anak Agung Gde Bagus Narendra Prabangsa, has disappointed and hurt the Indonesian press community.

See here for more of today’s Indonesia morning news


Lao PDR morning newsLao PDR morning news

Compiled by Piseth Pov          @piseth6666

Govt unveils foreign aid projection
The government is anticipating a significant drop in the amount of foreign grants it will receive this year, so the country will have to make some policy changes to sustain revenue generation.
— Vientiane Times

Fears linger for livelihoods as new villages being built for Lao victims may not be suitable for agriculture
THE VICTIMS of the Xi Pian-Xe Namnoi Dam collapse may not be able to return to their normal lives any time soon because the locations of their new villages and farmlands are unsuitable for living and farming.
— The Nation

Businesses urged to improve services for Chinese tourists
Tourism-related businesses should make adjustments for the additional Chinese tourists that the government expects will visit this year, a leading business figure says.
— Vientiane Times

See here for more of today’s Lao morning news


Malaysia morning newsMalaysia morning news

Compiled by Sreypov Men          @MenSreypov


“Cost Too High”: Malaysia Scraps $19 Billion China-Backed Rail Project
A multi-billion dollar China-backed rail project in Malaysia has been scrapped, government officials said Saturday, adding that the cost of building it was too high.

Malaysia’s rising illegal plastic recycling factories
The plastics processing industry in Malaysia is worth an estimated $840m, but not all of the imported plastics can be recycled and will end up in landfills, at huge financial and environmental costs.
— Aljazeera

Can a sugar tax dent Malaysia’s sweet tooth?
With the noble goal of pushing a country’s population towards healthier alternatives, the sugar tax is a much-debated topic. While critics deride the policy as ineffective due to consumers’ resistance to change, its supporters hail the tax primarily as a means to curb soaring obesity rates, tooth decay and non-communicable diseases (NCD) such as diabetes, heart attack and cancer.
— The Asean Post

See here for more of today’s Malaysia Morning News


Myanmar morning newsMyanmar morning news

Compiled by Sreypov Men          @MenSreypov


Myanmar to repay about 700 million USD debt in 2018-19 FY
Until 2059-2060 fiscal year, Myanmar is expected to repay original loans and interests for the total external debt of 10.20 billion USD, according to Union Parliament Public Joint Accounts Committee’s the findings and report on the mid-term debt management strategy 2018.
— Eleven Myanmar

Why China’s BRI is a win-win for Myanmar
Reading news reports coming out of Myanmar, I am always taken with the debate over the impact of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
— AEC News Today

Myanmar’s first LGBT pride boat parade sets sail
Rainbow flags flew high and gay anthems blasted out over Rangoon’s river as a flotilla of boats took to the water of Myanmar’s biggest city on Saturday for the country’s first-ever Pride boat parade in a sign of growing acceptance for LGBT rights.
— Bangkok Post

See here for more of today’s Myanmar morning news


Philippines morning newsPhilippines morning news

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu          @stmarisewudolu


Double-tap bomb kills 18 at Philippines mass
A double bomb attack during services at a Roman Catholic cathedral killed at least 18 people on a southern Philippines island.
— Bangkok Post/ AFP

Q1 GDP growth to suffer from budget delay — Dominguez
The first quarter gross domestic product (GDP) growth may suffer due to the delay in the passage of the 2019 General Appropriations Act (GAA), the Department of Finance (DOF) said.
— The Philippine Star

Zero underspending: Philippines 2018 infrastructure spend tipped to hit 6.2%
The Philippines government spending on infrastructure may have hit 6.2 per cent of the country’s economy in 2018, a continuation of the fast-tracked spending under President Rodrigo Duterte’s ambitious “Build, Build, Build” programme.
— AEC News Today

See here for more of today’s Philippines morning news


Singapore morning newsSingapore morning news

Compiled by John Le Fevre          @photo_journ


Local firms looking forward to approval of EU-Singapore FTA
A wider range of halal food products made in Singapore could find their way to stores in Europe for its growing Muslim population, should the upcoming European Union-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (FTA) be approved.
— Straits Times

Are Japanese universities losing their appeal to international students?
Revealed in the 2019 Times Higher Education (THE) University Rankings which cover more than 1,250 universities worldwide, only one Japanese university made it to the top 100 – Kyoto University (ranked 65th) – leaving behind the rest of Japanese institutions of higher education flagging in their prestige and appeal to domestic and international learners.
— The Independent

Singapore to tighten audit, valuation rules
AUDITORS are to come under greater scrutiny in one of the biggest overhauls of accountancy oversight in Singapore, which could see the Singapore Exchange Regulation (SGX RegCo) ordering second audit on listed companies with clean audits if something does not smell right.
— The Business Times

See here for more of today’s Singapore morning news


Thailand morning newsThailand morning news

Compiled by John Le Fevre          @photo_journ


FIFA asks Thai premier to release Bahraini soccer player
The Thai government has been asked by FIFA’s leadership to release a Bahraini soccer player who is in detention while embroiled in extradition proceedings despite having refugee status in Australia.
— Pattaya Mail

Ratchaburi province hit by smog for the first time
The western province of Ratchaburi is the latest province to be affected by PM2.5 dust particles to the extent that the provincial public disaster prevention and mitigation office has issued…
— Thai PBS World

Regional entrepreneurs begin mentoring course ahead of field trials
A programme to mentor 100 Asean entrepreneurs ahead of the pilot field deployment of sustainable programmes that provide long term community and economic benefits gotten underway at Thailand’s Chulalongkorn University earlier this week.
— AEC News Today

See here for more of today’s Thailand morning news


Vietnam morning newsVietnam morning news

Compiled by Sreypov Men          @MenSreypov


Vietnam begins abuse of power trial against former national security officials
Today, the People’s Court of Hanoi will open the trials of former national security advisors Bui Van Thanh and Tran Viet Tan on abuse of power charges.
— Foreign Brief

Vincom Landmark 81: watch SEAs tallest building go up in 30 seconds (video)
When the Vincom Landmark 81 completed construction in July 2018 it became the 14th tallest building in the world, and the tallest building in Southeast Asia.
— AEC News Today (video)

Time for Vietnam’s next generation of clean leaders to step up
Last year marked the mid-point between Vietnam’s five yearly National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV). The eighth plenum of the CPV Central Committee met in October to initiate planning for the 13th Congress in 2021.
— AEC News Today

See here for more of today’s Vietnam morning news


The Asean morning news roundup and its individual country morning news round-ups are the most comprehensive hand-curated selection of news reports from around the Asean Economic Community (AEC) published. We scour hundreds of local and international news and websites to find the things that you need to know to start your working week day.

We clearly identify the source of the story, whether it is behind a paywall, a media release, or whether the site uses annoying pop-up advertising or auto-play video, in case those things annoy you. It’s all then packaged up in an easy to read format enabling you to make an informed choice of whether you want to learn more by clicking directly through to the original source, or keep on reading the headlines. AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.


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