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Will Trump snap Japan’s tenuous tightrope?


Author: Harry Dempsey, AP Initiative The unhinged madman foreign policy of US President Donald Trump means Tokyo must walk a tightrope to manage the US–Japan alliance. On security policy, on trade and on North Korea, Japan will increasingly have to develop its own independent regional vision. Since US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s speech at […]

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Modi’s reforms will help India’s long-term growth


Author: Raghbendra Jha, ANU Two deep structural reforms shook up the Indian economy in 2017. The demonetisation of high-value notes and the introduction of a goods and services tax (GST) lay foundations for more robust and inclusive growth in the medium term. The demonetisation measures aimed to reduce India’s dependence on cash as well as […]

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Explaining one-party dominance in Japanese politics


Author: Arthur Stockwin, University of Oxford In 1990 US scholar TJ Pempel edited a book titled Uncommon Democracies, which wrote about parliamentary democracies where a single party had been unusually dominant. These included Sweden, Italy, Israel, West Germany and Japan. Australia was also a candidate for entry to this group. Of the original members, Japan […]

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Australia’s place in the new world order


Author: Allan Gyngell, AIIA In 2017, Australians had to acknowledge that the global order that had shaped the world since the end of World War II was not challenged or changing but over. The old order never functioned perfectly, but its central tenets were always clear: its normative values (set out in documents such as […]

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Stability reigns but Sri Lanka might stay in chains


Author: Dushni Weerakoon, Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka Strong macro-stabilisation efforts characterised Sri Lanka’s economic policy in 2017. After two years of budgetary turmoil, fiscal consolidation efforts under an ongoing IMF program are delivering higher revenues for the cash-strapped Treasury. A stronger fiscal footing is allowing Sri Lanka’s central bank to act pragmatically […]

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Indonesia still struggling to keep its generals confined to barracks


Author: Hipolitus Wangge, Marthinus Academy Indonesia’s democracy still faces the New Order legacy of military ambition within civilian political institutions, even after 19 years of reformation and the retreat from politics of the Indonesian military (known in Indonesian as the Tentara Nasional Indonesia, or TNI). The recent public displays of political aspiration by former general […]

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More to Australia–Japan security than bilateral defence ties


Author: Shiro Armstrong, ANU Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is visiting Japan today. Whatever else is said, at the top of the agenda in his discussions with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will be managing relations with the United States and China. These are the superpowers that determine and underpin economic, political and national security […]

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Sanctions did not stop North Korea’s sallow sustenance in 2017


Author: Benjamin Katzeff Silberstein, University of Pennsylvania Many analyses of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea overstate change and understate continuity in North Korean politics and its international relations. Given the lack of credible and verifiable information on much of the affairs surrounding the country, it is easy to take any new information as indicative […]

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Has Cambodia’s economic boom imploded?


Author: Heidi Dahles, Griffith University Cranes building Phnom Penh’s rapidly rising skyline give testimony to Cambodia’s enduring economic success as well as to China’s commitment to investing in the Kingdom’s infrastructure. Cambodia has been highly successful in attracting foreign direct investment, creating employment and alleviating poverty for millions. The outstanding performance of its economy has […]

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All eyes on Xi in 2018


Author: Ryan Manuel, Hong Kong University 2018 will see China take stock after the recently concluded 19th Party Congress, which outlined the new administration that will run the country for the next five years. In general, the year following a Party congress focusses on the transition to and consolidation of a new government, which leads […]

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