Sunday 25 Oct 2020 | 05:48 | SYDNEY
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Asia

On Australian public opinion, Xi gets it wrong

With the G20 leaders' summit in full swing earlier this week, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has been meeting with leaders from the UK, India, France and China. Turnbull had much to discuss with Xi Jinping in particular, as The Australian's David Crowe reported: An

Australia cannot afford to spurn its Chinese diaspora

The Australian Financial Review is running an ‘agents of influence’ series, in line with the media’s shift from a focus on Chinese investment to a broader discussion of China’s influence in Australia. One article has cast a shadow over the million-plus ethnic Chinese in

Witnessing an opaque Pacific power shift

Today the Lowy Institute’s Melanesia program launches a major update to the Institute’s flagship research mapping project on Chinese Aid in the Pacific.*  The map now contains a decade of Chinese government aid activities in the Pacific Islands region, making it a valuable resource for

North Korea: A realistic path to regime change

One of the great career mistakes a North Korea analyst can make is to predict Pyongyang's downfall, or (even worse) try to attach an actual date to that event. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) manages to survive no matter how much the world throws at it, no matter how many times we

Security shouldn't trump economics on the Ausgrid sale

Security trumps economics, or so the Ausgrid saga seems to have taught us. But maybe this framing is all wrong. Security and economics might be better thought of as being directly connected. If this is so, Australia is in real danger of building a poorer, less secure future through a flawed premise

Why Australia is the canary in the regional coal mine

It has been an interesting few months in Australia-China relations. Following the Ausgrid decision, accusations of drug cheating at the Rio Olympics and the response to the arbitral tribunal decision, Australia has been on receiving end of considerable Chinese chagrin. Whether in the formal

Call for Australia-China treaty to guide foreign investment

Just when Treasurer Scott Morrison will have been hoping to put last week’s surprisingly tough move against two Chinese power industry investors behind him, a major new report has reopened the entire Chinese foreign investment debate. The biggest ever independent study of the future of the

India and China: Playing 'Go' in the Indian Ocean

China and India are fast emerging as major maritime powers in the Indo-Pacific as part of long-term shifts in the regional balance of power. As their wealth, interests, and power expand, the two countries are also increasingly coming into contact with each other in the maritime domain. How India and

The Global Times and Beijing: A nuanced relationship

How seriously should we take China's Global Times? This always interesting question is particularly pertinent after the nationalist tabloid took aim at Australia on Saturday, referring to Australia as a 'paper cat', and promising revenge for Australia's position on the South China Sea dispute. 

South China Sea ruling sweeps away diplomatic ambiguities

Editor's note: We mistakenly published an earlier version of this article. This is the corrected text. Tuesday’s ruling by the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea has bought a little clarity to the problems in the South China Sea, but it has not made solving the underlying problems

Shaping China’s response to the PCA ruling

China’s national pride as well as its ambitions to exert control over the South China Sea were dealt a heavy blow by the 12 July decision of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague in the case filed by the Philippines. As expected, Beijing firmly rejected the ruling, declaring the award

South China Sea ruling: India takes a stand

The South China Sea dispute verdict has been delivered in favour of the Philippines, and the infamous 'nine dash line' now has no basis in international law. Without taking sides on the dispute, India has chosen to take a stand on the principle and application of international law, issuing a

South China Sea: A course-correction needed

Tuesday's South China Sea adjudication demonstrates that the UNCLOS framework is totally unsuited to sorting out the complex conflicting claims in the South China Sea in a way that the relevant parties will accept. By effectively announcing the Philippines as winner and China as loser, the tribunal'

'The Pivot': Three profound misunderstandings about Asia

I thank Hugh White for his most recent rebuttal, which addresses my response to his book review of The Pivot: The Future of American Statecraft in Asia. I have known Hugh White since working together in the 1990s, when we labored side-by-side in our respective defense agencies, ironically seeking to

The migration-security nexus in Asia and Australia (part 4)

There are clear signs that policy circles now consider migration to be an emerging security issue. For the first time this year’s Shangri-la Dialogue had a session on migration, during which Chinese and Indonesian delegations presented their respective policies on the security challenges of

South China Sea: Two things you should read

First, this speech by Singapore’s Ambassador-at-Large Bilahari Kausikan, delivered in Tokyo last week (thanks Merriden): The South China Sea (SCS) has emerged as something of a proxy for the adjustments underway between the US and China. I do not think either is looking for trouble. War by

The South China Sea: Next Stop the UN Security Council?

All the signs indicate that China is preparing to reject the anticipated adverse judgment of the Permanent Court of Arbitration on the South China Sea. The Philippines is arguing that China is acting illegally in exploiting resources in the areas beyond the United Nations Convention on the Law of

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