Indonesia foreign worker reform unlikely prior to election

• Editorial

Indonesia foreign worker reform unlikely prior to election

Controversy has surrounded revision of Indonesia’s foreign worker regulations ever since a presidential regulation (PP20) on the subject was issued on March 26. This is hardly surprising considering 2019 is an election year. Parties and potential presidential candidates are already looking for standout issues to garner public support. It is surprising, however, that President Joko […]

Phnom Penh’s glut of empty condos and homeless urban poor

• Editorial

Phnom Penh’s glut of empty condos and homeless urban poor

In January 2018 Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited Cambodia and oversaw the signing of 19 new development deals. The deals were announced just a few weeks after Chinese firms pledged to invest an additional US$7 billion in Cambodia, including for a highway construction project that will connect the capital city of Phnom Penh with the […]

South China Sea: Ample opportunity for Asean-China connectivity

• Editorial

South China Sea: Ample opportunity for Asean-China connectivity

China-Asean and China-US relations in the South China Sea have trended in opposite directions since July 12, 2016. On that day the Philippines and Asean set aside the near-term implementation of the South China Sea arbitration award supporting the case against China’s maritime infringements and opened a new chapter in relations with China. China-Asean ties […]

National Resilience: Key to Singapore’s counterterrorism preparedness (HD video)

The arrest of members of Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), an organisation linked to al-Qaeda, in Singapore in 2001 sent shock waves across the national security landscape. This portentous incident signalled both the need for Singapore to fortify national counterterrorism measures and the naissance of a new strategy that amalgamates existing kinetic and novel non-kinetic approaches to […]

Cambodia juggles energy need V risk new Chinese dam could ‘kill the Mekong’

• Editorial

Cambodia juggles energy need V risk new Chinese dam could ‘kill the Mekong’

In June 2018, a leaked environmental impact assessment report on the proposed Sambor Hydropower Dam project in Cambodia revealed that constructing a dam at the proposed site could “literally kill the [Mekong] river”. The Cambodian government kept the report, which was conducted by the US-based National Heritage Foundation, under wraps prior to the national elections […]

Urban planning should not ignore Cambodia’s invisible entrepreneurs

• Editorial

Urban planning should not ignore Cambodia’s invisible entrepreneurs

Southeast Asia is experiencing rapid urbanisation, and with it comes more and more people who are absorbed into the unregulated, informal sectors of the economy. In Cambodia, more than 95 per cent of the aggregate labour force is employed in unregulated, informal activities such as street vending, construction and transport. In its 2013 report on Cambodia the […]

Fishing militia to spearhead Vietnam’s response to China in South China Sea (video)

• Editorial

China has long been infamous for incorporating maritime militias into its fishing industry to assert its sovereignty claims. With the world’s largest fishing fleet, comprising 370,000 non-powered and 762,000 motor-powered vessels, China has the capacity and resources to push more of its fishermen to the front line of maritime disputes. Recent years have witnessed an […]

Has the PSI already been eaten by Indonesia’s predatory politics?

• Editorial

Has the PSI already been eaten by Indonesia’s predatory politics?

The Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI), a new participant in Indonesia’s electoral landscape set to contest the 2019 national election, is grabbing the attention of Indonesian political watchers. Labelled the ‘millennials’ party’, PSI sees itself as the most promising political vehicle for young people in Indonesia. Its cadres are youths purportedly dissociated from old interest groups. […]

Malaysia #GE14: Najib’s fall about being truly ‘Malaysian’ *updated

• Editorial

Malaysia #GE14: Najib’s fall about being truly ‘Malaysian’ *updated

The stunning victory of Malaysia’s opposition on May 9, 2018 in the country’s 14th general election and the equally impressive peaceful turnover of power — as the federal government changed hands for the first time in the country’s 60-year history — has put Malaysia in the international spotlight. Bucking the global trend of authoritarianism, millions […]

Increased military spending does not portend an Asean arms race

Increased military spending does not portend an Asean arms race

Southeast Asian countries’ historically high defence budgets are the sum of various national considerations: financial self-sufficiency, territorial control, expansion of capabilities, peacetime missions and the development of the local defence industry. The threat of China plays a limited role. Several Southeast Asian countries such as Cambodia, the Philippines, and Vietnam depended heavily on extra-regional powers […]

A fragile new ‘normal’ descends on South China Sea claimants

• Editorial

A fragile new ‘normal’ descends on South China Sea claimants

The United States and China have apparently reached a tacit agreement to disagree and maintain a leaky status quo in the South China Sea. Not coincidentally, relations on this issue between Asean claimants and between Asean and China are more or less at the same place. In this new ‘normal’ the United States will continue its […]

Disenfranchised & Discouraged: Malaysian Youth Shun Politics

Disenfranchised & Discouraged: Malaysian Youth Shun Politics

Observing the Parliament of Malaysia or indeed any of Malaysia’s 13 state legislative assemblies and it is noticeable that the corridors of power are packed with the elderly. There are no elected politicians between the ages of 15 to 24 in the country, and more than 70 per cent of parliamentarians are above the age of 50. This is […]

Time Running Out For US to Firm Philippines Relationship (video)

• Editorial

Time Running Out For US to Firm Philippines Relationship (video)

In spite of the United States’ renewed focus on great power competition in the 2018 National Defense Strategy (NDS), the war against terrorism will remain salient to US strategy. In few places is this clearer than in the Philippines. The United States’ ongoing efforts to bolster its military aid under the remit of counter-terrorism cooperation reflects Washington’s desire […]

Continuity Behind Strengthening Singapore-Malaysia Ties

• Editorial

Continuity Behind Strengthening Singapore-Malaysia Ties

The eighth Singapore-Malaysia Leaders’ Retreat held in Singapore on January 14 and 15 2018 witnessed a milestone in bilateral ties. Leaders of both countries signed an agreement to build a rapid transit system linking Johor Bahru and Singapore, and officially launched the Marina One and Duo joint developments. But new challenges threaten to test relations […]

Vietnam’s Data Localisation Push To Hurt Economy, Deliver Few Benefits

• Editorial

Vietnam’s Data Localisation Push To Hurt Economy, Deliver Few Benefits

Vietnam’s Ministry of Public Security (MoPS) thinks that it is killing two birds with one stone by passing new laws regulating data storage. But it could soon find out it has no use for two dead birds while the stone flies off and damages the economy. In June 2017, the MoPS proposed a draft cybersecurity […]

1 2 3 10