Skilful Lao Leadership Boosts Asean Unity on South China Sea

Skilful Lao Leadership Boosts Asean Unity on South China Sea

Clouded by controversy even before it began, the recently concluded 49th Asean Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) in Vientiane, Lao PDR was conspicuous for two things: who was and was not present; and, perhaps more importantly, what was and was not discussed. While Malaysia’s foreign minister, Anifah Aman – who had been expected at the AMM […]

Extrajudicial Killings Put Philippines Rule of Law at Risk

Extrajudicial Killings Put Philippines Rule of Law at Risk

Since his inauguration on June 30, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has been true to his campaign pledge of cracking down on drugs. He has ignored objections from within the Philippines and abroad about extrajudicial killings of supposed drug pushers and users by police and unknown assailants, which have already amounted to over a 1,700 deaths. […]

Indonesia’s Overly Ambitious Tax Target

Indonesia’s Overly Ambitious Tax Target

Once again Indonesia President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo has reshuffled his cabinet. One pleasant surprise is the return of Ms Mulyani Indrawati, who until recently was managing director and chief operating officer of the World Bank. She accepted the offer to serve as the Minister of Finance, replacing Bambang Brodjonegoro who now leads the Ministry of […]

Vietnam’s Higher Education Reforms Target 10,000 PhDs in Six Years

Vietnam’s Higher Education Reforms Target 10,000 PhDs in Six Years

Vietnam has announced a bold new higher education reform agenda. The government of Vietnam will offer up to 10,000 government scholarships for overseas doctoral study between 2014 and 2020 (or 1,300–1,500 per year) to tertiary and research institute staff. The so-called 911 Project will also offer scholarships to qualified non-academic professionals committed to tertiary teaching […]

Why Najib Razak is a Political Dead Man Walking

Why Najib Razak is a Political Dead Man Walking

Last month the US Department of Justice (US-DoJ) announced that it was taking action to seek ‘the forfeiture and recovery of more than US$1 billion in assets’ related to 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). This action will likely start the process that will eventually lead to the removal of Najib Razak, Malaysia’s sixth prime minister. According […]

1MDB Highlights Need For Institutional Reform of State’s Role in Business

1MDB Highlights Need For Institutional Reform of State’s Role in Business

The 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal in Malaysia which has recently become the subject of a high-profile lawsuit by the United States Department of Justice’s asset recovery initiative highlights the problems with state-ownership in the Malaysian economy. To prevent such scandals from recurring in the future Malaysia must define the role of the government in […]

Myanmar’s Energy Sector Lacking Security

Myanmar’s Energy Sector Lacking Security

Myanmar is on track to be a major player in Asia’s energy security. It has an abundance of untapped resources, a geographic location strategically sandwiched between two economic giants (China and India) and has recently opened itself to world markets. Yet the nation faces internal and external challenges in developing a competitive Myanmar energy sector. […]

South China Sea ruling puts Asean and China at a crossroad (video)

South China Sea ruling puts Asean and China at a crossroad (video)

Almost 30 years to the day that a young, Harvard-trained American lawyer won a famous judgment at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) against the United States, Paul S Reichler pulled off another momentous victory at The Hague. This time the judgment was against China for having breached its international treaty obligations in the South […]

Saving the Vietnam textile and garment industry (video)

Saving the Vietnam textile and garment industry (video)

In just 25 years Vietnam has transformed from one of the world’s poorest countries to a lower middle income economy. This is primarily due to key structural reforms which were implemented in 1986 in areas such as reforming state-owned enterprises (SOEs), private sector development, financial reform, public expenditure management and trade liberalisation. The World Bank […]

Thailand’s Draft Constitution Faces Uphill Battle

Thailand’s Draft Constitution Faces Uphill Battle

After some months of uncertainty, a representative from Thailand’s Democrat Party last week declared in a televised seminar that the party would not support the proposed draft constitution in the August 7 referendum. This follows an earlier declaration from the pro-Thaksin Puea Thai Party (PTP) that it also opposed the draft. The announcement represents a […]

China successfully divides Asean on the South China Sea

China successfully divides Asean on the South China Sea

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s whirlwind tour of Brunei, Cambodia and Laos between April 22 and 24, 2016 courted support for his country’s territorial claims in the South China Sea. But the issue of China’s policy in the South China Sea has created a fault line across Asean, complicating the unity and effectiveness of the […]

Achieving harmony in the wake of the South China Sea ruling

Achieving harmony in the wake of the South China Sea ruling

Southeast Asia has descended into a maritime insecurity spiral since the April–June 2012 stand-off at Scarborough Shoal between Chinese maritime security forces and the Philippine Navy which led Manila to initiate legal arbitration proceedings in The Hague. The ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration’s (PCA) in favour of the Philippines will be difficult to […]

1 10 11 12 13 14 17