Time for China to let go of the dollar

Zhou Xiaochuan, Governor of the People's Bank of China (PBoC), at a press conference during the third Session of the 12th NPC (National People's Congress) in Beijing, 12 March 2015. Zhou Xiaochuan said on Thursday 12 March 2015 that China is sticking to the prudent monetary policy despite the use of a string of new monetary policy tools. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

China’s Third Plenum reforms, introduced under the leadership of President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang in November 2013, promised deep market-based reform in the economy, including reform of financial markets and liberalisation of the capital account of international payments. Read more…

Banking on America’s Asian choices

US President Barack Obama boards Air Force One after a trip to Asia in late 2014. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

The US–China relationship is undoubtedly the single most important bilateral relationship in the world today. More hinges on the successful management of that relationship, not only for Asian but also for global peace and prosperity, than on any other single relationship in the world. Read more…

Australia and Indonesia in it for the long haul

Indonesian President Joko Widodo and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott walk into a meeting room for a plenary session at the G-20 summit in Brisbane, Australia, 15 November 2014. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

Two and a half years ago, the then Australian prime minister, Julia Gillard, launched a White Paper on Australia in the Asian Century. Despite being electronically burned by the current Australian government, in an act of foolish partisanship, it continues to provide a reference point in Australia’s dealings with its region. Read more…

Rebuilding trust after the Fukushima disaster

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe bows to Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko in front of the altar for the victims of the 11 March 2011 earthquake and tsunami at the national memorial service in Tokyo, Japan, 11 March 2014. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

This week is the fourth anniversary of Japan’s disastrous Tohoku earthquake and the massive tidal wave that fractured the ageing Fukushima nuclear power facilities, leading to a shutdown of Japan’s 48 nuclear power plants on top of the six decommissioned at Fukushima.  Read more…

The paradox of Xi’s political power

Chinese President Xi Jinping during an official ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

A key pillar of President Xi Jinping’s program of political reform is entrenching the rule of law through developing the idea of ‘Chinese constitutionalism’, or the authority of the Chinese constitution. If he succeeds, one would imagine, the consequences for governance, and ultimately even the Chinese political system, will be profound. Read more…

Crunch time in Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea's Prime Minister Peter O'Neill arrives at an event in Port Moresby in 2013. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

The talk in Canberra is that the priority in Australia’s diplomacy for 2015 will be its own backyard in the Pacific. This is long overdue, and may be too late. Mending diplomatic fences with Fiji may be one thing; Australia’s ability to have a positive impact on outcomes in Papua New Guinea is likely to be quite another thing altogether. Read more…

The unremarked revolution in China

A customer shops at a supermarket in Huaibei city, China, 10 February 2015. China's inflation plunged to 0.8 per cent in January, its lowest level for more than five years, official data showed. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

The Chinese economy, one might think if one took most of the commentary on it seriously, is on a hiding to nowhere good. The growth rate is falling. Manufacturing is suffering over-capacity. The real estate bubble has burst, or is about to. The opportunity for productive infrastructure investment is running out. Read more…