Indonesia’s ASEAN leadership lost at sea

As ASEAN meetings in Vientiane concluded in September 2016, an air of anxiety was already beginning to settle over the Southeast Asian nations. Further resistance against China’s maritime assertiveness in the South China Sea is proving increasingly futile. Nothing displays this conviction better than ASEAN’s muted acquiescence towards Beijing’s rejection of a legally binding Permanent

How to rescue the international monetary system

The global financial crisis raised critical questions about how international policy frameworks monitor, regulate and manage global liquidity. Liquidity is a public good and the international financial system is immediately affected by its excessive volatility. The G20 has been struggling for some time to come up with answers. They have focused on an important array

Is global finance adapting to the renminbi?

On 30 November 2015, the IMF announced that the Chinese renminbi (RMB) was to be included in its special drawing rights (SDR) currency basket. Joining the SDR — the IMF’s chief international reserve asset for member states — meant that the RMB had been deemed ‘freely usable’. The announcement sparked renewed discussion of the RMB’s

That 2008 comparison (again)

IT IS the nature of columnists to look for historical parallels, as they provide a good peg for discussing current conditions. So it is hardly surprising that Gillian Tett of the Financial Times, who made her reputation with her acute coverage of the 2008 crisis, has sounded warning signs about a repeat and indeed about

The role of BRICS in global governance

Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) have existed as a coherent economic group since 2009. They represent approximately 40 per cent of the world population, generate approximately 20 per cent of world output, have accounted for 50 per cent of global growth since the end of 2009 and play a crucial role in

G20 Must Push for More Inclusive GDP

02 September 2016 Dr Paola Subacchi Research Director, International Economics Unpaid work adds billions to the global economy. Measuring women’s untold contribution is crucial. A woman drives her tricycle in Hangzhou before the G20 summit. Photo by Getty Images. The global financial crisis demanded a radical overhaul of our economic thinking. Assumptions and policies that for

China’s role in an emerging global order

China’s status within the prevailing global order has sparked one of the most contested debates in international affairs. For some, it evokes their worst fears over a rising revisionist power; for others it creates inflated expectations over what the Chinese leadership is willing to commit to within the global arena. The tendency to exaggerate Chinese

On nuclear first strike, White is wrong

Hugh White’s views on the dangers of the United States moving to a ‘No First Use’ nuclear posture are not just inherently unpersuasive, for reasons crisply spelt out by Ramesh Thakur, for instance, in recent pieces in The Strategist and Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. They are also most decidedly not shared by a large group of

Making the Hangzhou G20 summit relevant

Among all the summit-babble about inclusive and sustainable growth and a myriad other agendas that have attached themselves to the G20, it’s still far from clear that when leaders gather in Hangzhou in China next weekend they will add strategic value to the world’s premier economic dialogue. It’s not the divisions over objectives and values

Can China help shape global governance at the G20?

At the end of the twentieth century, China was an observer of global governance, on the sidelines of the G7 and not yet a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Encouraged by Western countries to embrace global governance, China has become much more proactive in pushing global cooperation since the G20 was founded. As

FTA with Vietnam is win-win deal

The EU’s FTA with Vietnam will boost growth and investment according to the top officials who negotiated the deal. Speaking at a conference on 14 September, co-sponsored by the EU-Asia Centre, Tran Quoc Khahn, Vice Minister of industry and trade, and Mauro Petriccione, Deputy Director General, DG Trade, both expressed optimism about the potential for

Colloquium on interdisciplinary arguments on scarcity, morality and public policy

Where? Vilnius, Artis Hotel When? November 17th, 2016 The goals of the colloquium are to advance among free-market think-tankers interdisciplinary perspectives on liberty, morality and free markets and to equip them with interdisciplinary arguments in favor of free enterprise. The colloquium will consist of four topic-specific sessions, on monetary policy, the welfare state, labour market

Fiscal Stimulus Must Play Its Part in Reviving Global Growth

09 September 2016 Alan Wheatley Associate Fellow, International Economics The era of ever-easier monetary policy is drawing to a close. Mario Draghi spoke approvingly of a commitment by G20 leaders to use all tools to shore up growth. Photo by Getty Images. It is time for fiscal stimulus to gradually assume more of the burden

Discussion on Authoritarian Populism in Europe

On September 15, 2016 the Lithuanian Free Market Institute (LFMI) in partnership with Timbro and  the Institute of International Relations and Political Sciences of Vilnius University will hold a discussion “Authoritarian Populism in Europe: The Resurgence of Parties and Ideologies.” A recently published Timbro Authoritarian Populism Index (TAPI) reveals that never before have populist parties had as

Brexit and the City of London: What Future for the UK’s Financial Services Industry?

Invitation Only Research Event Brexit and the City of London: What Future for the UK’s Financial Services Industry? 21 Sep 2016 – 08:15 to 09:30 Chatham House London Europe Programme Participants David J. Wright, Partner, Flint Global; Secretary-General, International Organization of Securities Commissions (2012-16); Director and then Director-General, Financial Services Policy, DG for Internal Market

Japan Lays Out a Guide to Brexit

06 September 2016 Sir David Warren Associate Fellow, Asia Programme Britain would do well to embrace Tokyo’s constructive criticism as it prepares for life outside the EU. Inside the Nissan plant in Sunderland. Photo by Getty Images. The Japanese government paper on the implications of Brexit released on 2 September has been described in the

How to pluck fruits of sharing economy?

What is “sharing” or, as it is sometimes referred to, “collaborative” economy? It is a rapidly rising business model which enables online trade in goods and services. For example, Lithuanians already enjoy ride-sharing platform Uber, P2P lending platforms such as Savy or Finbee, borrow things from each other on dalinuosi.lt and rent out their homes

Lithuania to Forge Ahead in Doing Business Rankings

Ranked 20th in the 2016 World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index, Lithuania has outstripped its closest neighbours Latvia and Poland. Yet, possibilities of forging ahead as one of the most business-friendly economies are not fully exhausted. Indeed, Lithuania has high ratings for starting a business, registering property and enforcing contracts, but red tape and

Bargain hunt

AFTER years of economic stagnation and questionable lending, bad loans at Italian banks have piled up. The gross value of non-performing loans (NPLs) is around €360 billion ($406 billion), or almost one-fifth of Italian GDP. Hasty repairs and rescues have been arranged for troubled lenders—notably Monte dei Paschi di Siena, the third-biggest, in July. But

Emptying the tills

ONLY tourists pay in cash, says the young barista in Espresso House, a Swedish coffee chain, on Vasagatan in Stockholm. “They don’t understand we don’t use that anymore,” she rolls her eyes, gesturing to the card machine. The contactless “taps” that locals use are much faster, and she frequently runs out of change when foreigners

Has Trudeau struck a new tone for Sino­–Canadian relations?

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s eight-day official visit to China in August 2016 was, by most accounts, full of substance and style. The Trudeau government portrayed the visit as part of a refocus to China after a somewhat tumultuous previous relationship. Over the past two decades, Canadian governments have grappled with striking an appropriate balance

Can Japan make its presence felt in Africa?

Africa is becoming a new strategic playground where economic and geopolitical rivalry between Asian powers compels Japan to compete in a contemporary struggle for influence. Japan’s decision to hold the Sixth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) on African soil in August 2016 — for the first time in TICAD’s 23-year history — is

Obama’s Asia policy: a solid double

On rare occasions, international issues are resolved by a dramatic, decisive development. Much more often, progress is incremental. As United States President Barack Obama has said, an administration hits more singles and doubles than home runs. This has certainly been the nature of the United States’ recent achievements in Asia. Unlike the Middle East, which

Indonesia’s ASEAN leadership lost at sea

As ASEAN meetings in Vientiane concluded in September 2016, an air of anxiety was already beginning to settle over the Southeast Asian nations. Further resistance against China’s maritime assertiveness in the South China Sea is proving increasingly futile. Nothing displays this conviction better than ASEAN’s muted acquiescence towards Beijing’s rejection of a legally binding Permanent

FTA with Vietnam is win-win deal

The EU’s FTA with Vietnam will boost growth and investment according to the top officials who negotiated the deal. Speaking at a conference on 14 September, co-sponsored by the EU-Asia Centre, Tran Quoc Khahn, Vice Minister of industry and trade, and Mauro Petriccione, Deputy Director General, DG Trade, both expressed optimism about the potential for

A sponge wrung dry

ORDERS from on high can shape the Chinese economy. In 2013 Xi Jinping, the president, said cities should be more like sponges, sopping up rainwater for reuse when parched. China is now working on some 30 “sponge cities”. Then in 2014 Mr Xi said the government should encourage businesses to invest in state projects. Since

The Chinese diaspora’s role in the rise of China

In 1995, Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade published a 350-page report on overseas Chinese business networks, calling them ‘one of the main forces driving the dynamic growth that characterises the region’. This interest reflected the economic clout of the then 50-odd million diaspora Chinese — living mostly in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau and

Malaysia: chipping away at the opposition before the next election?

On 29 June this year, Lim Guan Eng, the Chief Minister of Penang state and Secretary General of the opposition Democratic Action Party (DAP), was arrested and charged with two counts of corruption and abuse of public office. The case at hand was Lim’s 2015 purchase of a house from businesswoman Phang Li Koon for

China is destined to lead, but not ready

For a great power to lead the world there are a few qualities that it should bring to the table. These include, but are not limited to, material strength, an aspiration for recognition, and sufficient international support. Does China currently possess these qualities? Material strength is the idea that a great power can survive a

Curbing North Korea’s nuclear ambitions

As an aspirant nuclear state, North Korea is atypical in nearly every way. It is smaller, poorer, less technologically developed, more isolated, more highly militarised and more authoritarian. North Korea conducted its fifth nuclear test on Friday 9 September, ten years after it first demonstrated such a capacity. Its pace of development — an average

The fall-out from the Brussels terrorist attacks

What’s next in responding to terror threats in Europe? Original Source: European Policy Center

Nord Stream II – yes or no? – Political decision of a political Commission

Will this Commission be ready to defend EU principles and commitments when assessing Nord Stream II? Original Source: European Policy Center

Podcast: The Life and Death of John Birch

When most Americans hear the name John Birch, they immediately think of the John Birch Society: an anticommunist, right-wing advocacy group that flourished in the 1950s and 60s. But who was John Birch, and what did the society have to do with him? On this week’s Asia Unbound podcast I speak with Terry Lautz, visiting

Advisory Papers on Political Party Development IV

Our 4th edition of the Advisory Papers on “Guidelines for How Political Parties Can Effectively Use New Media in Their Public Relations and Communications Programs” is now available. Original Source: KAS Kambodscha

Survey Report on Waste Management Practices at Municipality/District Level

The NLC/S, supported by KAS Cambodia, has documented current practices and challenges related to waste management at the subnational level in Cambodia and in other selected countries. The results have been summarized in a report and are now available in English and Khmer. Original Source: KAS Kambodscha

High-Speed Railroad and Economic Geography: Evidence from Japan

Surging high-speed railroad investments may encourage the formation of megacities due to further agglomeration in service industries. This can have profound implications for urban policies on society, demographics, and environment. Original Source: Asian Development Bank

UK Unplugged? The Impacts of Brexit on Energy and Climate Policy

Project: Energy, Environment and Resources Department, Europe Programme26 May 2016   Antony Froggatt   Senior Research Fellow, Energy, Environment and Resources   Thomas Raines   Research Fellow and Programme Manager, Europe Programme In the field of energy and climate change policy, remaining in the EU offers the best balance of policy options for Britain’s national interests.

Passages to India: Reflecting on 50 years of research in South Asia

Editors’ Note: How do states manage their armed forces, domestic politics, and foreign affairs? Stephen Cohen, senior fellow with the India Project at Brookings, has studied this and a range of other issues in Southeast Asia since the 1960s. In a new book, titled “The South Asia Papers: A Critical Anthology of Writings,” Cohen reflects

Integrity pacts: a how-to guide from practitioners

“Integrity Pacts” are a tool developed by Transparency International for tackling corruption in public procurement. They have been applied in many countries around the world for over 20 years. There are even countries in which the use of the Integrity Pact has become part of the law or governmental procedures, such as in India or

Colloquium on interdisciplinary arguments on scarcity, morality and public policy

Where? Vilnius, Artis Hotel When? November 17th, 2016 The goals of the colloquium are to advance among free-market think-tankers interdisciplinary perspectives on liberty, morality and free markets and to equip them with interdisciplinary arguments in favor of free enterprise. The colloquium will consist of four topic-specific sessions, on monetary policy, the welfare state, labour market

Discussion on Authoritarian Populism in Europe

On September 15, 2016 the Lithuanian Free Market Institute (LFMI) in partnership with Timbro and  the Institute of International Relations and Political Sciences of Vilnius University will hold a discussion “Authoritarian Populism in Europe: The Resurgence of Parties and Ideologies.” A recently published Timbro Authoritarian Populism Index (TAPI) reveals that never before have populist parties had as

Brexit and the City of London: What Future for the UK’s Financial Services Industry?

Invitation Only Research Event Brexit and the City of London: What Future for the UK’s Financial Services Industry? 21 Sep 2016 – 08:15 to 09:30 Chatham House London Europe Programme Participants David J. Wright, Partner, Flint Global; Secretary-General, International Organization of Securities Commissions (2012-16); Director and then Director-General, Financial Services Policy, DG for Internal Market

Korean Unification and Prospects for Peace and Prosperity in Northeast Asia

Wed07 Sep Invitation Only Research Event Korean Unification and Prospects for Peace and Prosperity in Northeast Asia 7 Sep 2016 – 10:00 to 11:00 Add to Calendar iCalendar Outlook Google Yahoo Chatham House, London Asia Programme, Korean Peninsula Participants Dr Kihl-Jae Ryoo, Professor, University of North Korean Studies, Seoul; Minister of Unification, Republic of Korea

The Changing Dynamics of the Australia-China Economic Relationship

Tue06 Sep Invitation Only Research Event The Changing Dynamics of the Australia-China Economic Relationship 6 Sep 2016 – 10:30 to 12:00 Add to Calendar iCalendar Outlook Google Yahoo Chatham House, London International Economics Department Participants Peter David Drysdale, Emeritus Professor of Economics and Visiting Fellow, Crawford School of Economics and Government, College of Asia and the

Challenge and Uncertainty in a Volatile World: Japan-UK Perspectives

Wed12 Oct Thu13 Oct Invitation Only Research Event Challenge and Uncertainty in a Volatile World: Japan-UK Perspectives 12 Oct 2016 – 10:15 to 13 Oct 2016 – 14:45 Add to Calendar iCalendar Outlook Google Yahoo Tokyo, Japan Asia Programme, UK-Japan Global Seminar Series Download Results Overview This event will be the fourth in a series

Is the United States losing China to Russia?

Event Information July 26, 2016 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM EDT Falk Auditorium Brookings Institution 1775 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20036 Register for the Event Last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin made his fourth visit to China since President Xi Jinping became top party leader in 2012. During this latest meeting, the two countries

China’s engagement in Africa: From natural resources to human resources

Event Information July 13, 2016 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM EDT Falk Auditorium Brookings Institution 1775 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20036 Register for the Event Throughout the 2000s, Chinese demand for primary goods like oil, iron, copper, and zinc helped Africa reduce poverty more than it had in decades. Even so, China’s total investment

The Refugee Crisis in the Eastern Mediterranean: What Can We Learn from Lesbos?

Wed27 Jul Research Event The Refugee Crisis in the Eastern Mediterranean: What Can We Learn from Lesbos? 27 Jul 2016 – 12:00 to 13:15 Add to Calendar iCalendar Outlook Google Yahoo Chatham House, London Europe Programme Participants Christina Velentza, Academy Stavros Niarchos Foundation Fellow, International Law/Europe Programmes, Chatham HouseFotini Rantsiou, Field Advisor, Solidarity Now; Senior

Sustainability within the China-Africa relationship: governance, investment, and natural capital

Event Information July 11, 2016 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM CST School of Public Policy and Management Auditorium Brookings-Tsinghua Center Beijing, China Register for the Event On July 11, 2016, the Brookings-Tsinghua Center for Public Policy is holding a forum on Sustainability within the China-Africa Relationship: Governance, Investment, and Natural Capital. The event will be