East Asia Forum

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East Asia Forum
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Analysis of economics, politics and public policy in East Asia and the Pacific.

An 'Abenomics' Scorecard

Date: 9 November 2014

The December 2012 election gave Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party control of both houses of the Diet as the electorate sought positive, decisive, energetic leadership out of the malaise of the past two decades. Shinzo Abe offered himself as that leader, with Abenomics as his program. 

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Clear Challenges Exist at the Next ASEAN Summit

Date: 8 November 2014

On 12 November 2014, ASEAN leaders will gather in Naypyidaw, Myanmar’s new capital, for their twice-yearly summit.  High on the ASEAN agenda for this November’s summit is, of course, the South China Sea. 

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China's Place in Asia Post-APEC

Date: 7 November 2014

On 10 November 2014 a summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum will convene in Beijing, followed in rapid succession by the East Asia Summit in Naypyidaw and the G20 in Brisbane.  Much of what will be said and done at these events will implicate the tectonics of nascent global governance set in motion by China’s campaign for greater influence in Asia. 

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APEC and the Trans-Pacific Partnership

Date: 6 November 2014

The race is on between the United States and China to dominate the rules-setting game for trade by being the first to be able to announce plans for a free trade area in the Pacific Rim. China hopes to use its position as chair of APEC this year to propose that a feasibility study on a Free Trade Agreement for the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP), first mooted in 2006, be pursued. In other words, negotiations towards an FTAAP would commence, for all practical purposes. 

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The Appetite for 'Dim Sum' Bonds is Beginning to Wane

Date: 6 November 2014

The offshore renminbi bond market has boomed since the Chinese authorities first allowed domestic banks to issue them in Hong Kong in June 2007. But appetite for the paper — popularly known as ‘dim sum bonds’ — is starting to wane as access to onshore markets becomes easier. To stay relevant, the dim sum market must develop further. 

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Can India's Modi Strengthen the Relationship with Japan?

Date: 5 November 2014

Since taking office, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made efforts to entice foreign investment into India and to establish closer ties with Japan. Warm diplomatic gestures between Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe have garnered considerable attention, with some commentators arguing that Modi’s recent visit to Japan marks the beginning of a new Indo-Japanese relationship aimed at countering China’s growing influence in the region. 

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Does U.S. Leadership Need to Change to Meet New Global Challenges?

Date: 5 November 2014

Foreign policy is a search for and an attempt to impose order on an unruly world. That task has become more difficult in recent years, with an ever-lengthening list of threats, challenges and destabilising factors. The rise of Asia in the global system also requires a paradigm shift in thinking about global governance. 

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Could a Hostile Parliament Be Good for Indonesia's Jokowi?

Date: 4 November 2014

There is good news and bad news about the recent string of victories of the ‘Red and White’ coalition in the Indonesian parliament. The good news is that unlike previous Indonesian presidents, President Joko Widodo — popularly known as Jokowi — will have to face a critical and probably hostile parliament. This is also the bad news. 

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Geo-political Challenges and Economics in Asia

Date: 3 November 2014

What can economics tell you about the geo-political challenges in Asia? Many strategic thinkers focus on defence capabilities, ideology, politics, environmental threats or history to envisage strategic futures. Economics provides a lens to focus on the fundamental drivers of regional power relations. 

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Japan Impresses with its FIT (Feed-In-Tariff)

Date: 1 November 2014

The effects of Japan’s feed-in tariff (FIT) for renewable energy have been impressive. Since 2011, Japan has seen a massive expansion of solar photovoltaics (PV). The size of the domestic market increased from 1GW in 2010 to almost 7GW in 2013. This solar expansion is expected to continue with the 2020 target for PV installations raised from 14GW to 28GW. But the success of renewable energy should not be taken for granted. 

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Unintended Consequences of Papua New Guinea's Exchange Rate Policy

Date: 31 October 2014

Earlier this year, Papua New Guinea moved away from a market-based exchange rate. It seemed just a technical announcement at the time. The central bank indicated that the exchange rate would float within a narrow band around the interbank exchange rate. However, this seemingly innocuous announcement has major implications for PNG’s future development. 

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How Important to China is the WTO Ruling on Rare Earths?

Date: 30 October 2014

In August, the Appellate Body of the WTO ruled that China’s export duties, quotas, and administration of rare earths, tungsten and molybdenum products violated various provisions of the GATT and the Accession Protocol that China promised to implement when it joined the WTO in 2001. 

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Now What? - The Post-IPO Future for Alibaba

Date: 29 October 2014

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has a track record of breaking records. It not only operates the world’s largest online business-to-business platform, but also the world’s largest online consumer marketplace. 

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