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Will Abe’s constitutional concessions be enough?


Author: Dalin Hamilton, Macquarie University Constitutional revision is central to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s political agenda. He believes that in order to make Japan a ‘beautiful country’ — the title of Abe’s book, which describes a conservative Japan in which ‘Japaneseness’ and Japan’s unique culture, tradition, nature and history are properly valued — Japan […]

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Do Chinese women get half the credit for holding up half the sky?


Author: Jane Golley, ANU A ‘moderately prosperous society’ with no Chinese individual left behind — that was the vision set out by Chinese President Xi Jinping in his epic speech to the 19th National Congress on 18 October 2017. He mentioned gender just once in the speech. It may have deserved more attention than that. […]

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Centralisation not reconciliation under Najib Razak


Author: Kai Ostwald, University of British Columbia Election season has once again arrived in Malaysia as the country prepares to hold its 14th general election within the first half of 2018. The competitive nature of the last two general elections has fuelled widespread speculation about the possible defeat of the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) […]

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Engaging Australia’s Chinese diaspora


Author: Ien Ang, Western Sydney University Since the opening of China’s economy in 1978, emigration from China has steadily gathered pace. The number of Chinese from the mainland living and working overseas rose from 4.1 million in 1990 to 9.3 million in 2013. This recent wave of Chinese migration is very different from earlier Chinese […]

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Democracy decaying in Bangladesh


Author: Inge Amundsen, CMI Bangladesh has taken yet another turn on its downwards spiral from democracy to authoritarianism. On 8 February 2018, a Bangladeshi judge convicted opposition leader Khaleda Zia — the nation’s former president — of corruption and sentenced her to five years’ imprisonment. The decision sparked violence and protests in major cities across […]

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No need to rock the boat in the South China Sea


Author: Sam Bateman, RSIS In the wake of Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s visit to Washington, there has been renewed pressure for Australia to undertake assertive freedom of navigation operations (FONOPs) in the South China Sea. It has also been suggested that France and the United Kingdom should undertake joint patrols in the South China […]

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China’s grand strategy in a new era


Author: Zhong Feiteng, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences In the 19th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress Report, President Xi Jinping claimed that China was entering a ‘new era’. China has transformed its newfound riches into strength, and in the next 30 years, China will inexorably become a leading global power. The big question for the […]

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Moving from defence to offence on trade strategy


Author: Editorial Board, East Asia Forum The trade architecture in East Asia — the most dynamic region in the global economy — is up for grabs. The very system on which regional arrangements are built is under threat. US President Donald Trump’s withdrawing the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), his ‘America First’ agenda […]

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The new Trans-Pacific Partnership hunkers down against Trump


Author: Shiro Armstrong, ANU On his third day in office, US President Donald Trump honoured his election campaign promise to take the United States out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The move left allies and partners across the Pacific in Asia shell-shocked and may well come to be seen as the turning point in US […]

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North Korea’s missile shower cements Japan’s defence strategy


Author: Hiroyasu Akutsu, NIDS Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe stated in January 2018 that ‘North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons and missiles represents an unprecedentedly grave and urgent threat’ to Japan. Indeed, Japan’s North Korea policy has hardened amid an uptick in North Korean missile testing. North Korea simultaneously launched three ballistic missiles in September […]

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