Seizing the moment in Asian economic diplomacy

Female Chinese workers sew clothes to be exported to Southeast Asian countries at a garment factory in Huaibei city, 19 January 2016. The Trans-Pacific Partnership will likely divert trade and investment away from non-members. Already some manufacturers are moving from China to Vietnam to take advantage of better access to the US market. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

Asia is looking to complete a major economic agreement by early 2017 that offers the chance to lift its growth closer to potential by locking in domestic reform and liberalisation through regional cooperation. The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement is Asia’s response to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and heralds the next phase in Asian economic cooperation. Read more…

The limits to Chinese political power

Chinese President Xi Jinping is displayed on a screen as Chinese battle tanks take part in a parade commemorating the 70th anniversary of Japan's surrender during World War II on 3 September 2015. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

As China has become a larger player in the world economy and its influence in world political affairs has grown, the need to understand the Chinese political system and how political power is exercised within it has grown commensurately. Read more…

Australia’s fraught decision on submarines

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida listen to a reporter’s question during a joint press conference in Tokyo, on 11 June 2014. A submarine deal would fundamentally change the Australia–Japan security relationship. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

Australia is about to embark on its single biggest ever military acquisition. The Future Submarine Program (SEA1000) will see Australia purchase 12 submarines to replace its ageing Collins-class fleet.

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Where’s South Korea’s democracy headed?

South Korean President Park Geun Hye attends a New Year's press conference in Seoul on 12 January 2015. A growing rift between President Park and her ruling Saenuri Party has dominated the upcoming elections for South Korea’s National Assembly. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

On 13 April South Koreans will elect the 300 members of the country’s unicameral National Assembly. Since making the switch from military dictatorship to democracy in 1987 and announcing itself on the world stage at the 1988 Seoul Olympics, South Korea has undergone a remarkable political transformation. Read more…

China and Indonesia’s strategic options

An Indonesian Navy ship patrols as a fishing vessel from Vietnam caught fishing illegally in Indonesian seas start to sink after being blown up by the Indonesian Navy on 19 October 2015. Indonesia has sunk more than 150 foreign boats for illegal fishing since President Joko Widodo came to power in 2014. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

Indonesia appears ready to flex its diplomatic, if not its maritime, muscle in dealings with China over a recent incident involving a Chinese coastguard vessel and an Indonesian patrol boat in the vicinity of Indonesia’s Natuna Islands in the South China Sea. Read more…

China’s two big challenges

President Barack Obama meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Le Bourget, outside Paris on 23 November 2015. Figuring out how to respond China’s challenge to the status quo will be a major concern into the future. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

Asia’s — and China’s — path to prosperity is not going to be easy. China’s neighbours in Northeast Asia managed to succeed in joining the club of high income countries and the rest of East Asia is trying to emulate that. But there’s no automatic route to the top. Read more…

Breaking the deadlock between India and Pakistan

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi being welcomed by the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif, at the airport in Lahore, Pakistan on 25 December 2015. The historic visit followed an agreement earlier that month to initiate a comprehensive dialogue process. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

South Asia is one of the least economically integrated regions in the world. At 5 per cent, trade shares among South Asian neighbours are lower than trade shares among Sub-Saharan African economies. This is largely because the region’s two biggest players — India and Pakistan — do not have normalised economic relations. Read more…