Thursday, September 21, 2017

The Belt and Road Initiative: China’s vision for globalisation, Beijing-style

China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a multifaceted economic, diplomatic and geopolitical undertaking that has morphed through various iterations, from the “New Silk Road” to “One Belt One Road”.

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Poorer nations do more for large mammals

Scores of animal species across the globe, including tigers, lions and rhinos, are at risk of extinction due to threats posed by mankind. Recent studies indicate that 59 percent of the world’s largest carnivores and 60pc of the world’s largest herbivores are currently threatened with extinction. These species, known as megafauna, play very important ecological roles, but can be difficult to live with because they are prone to conflict with humans and can be challenging to conserve.

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Nepal failed to recover after quake

Two years after the devastating earthquakes that struck Nepal, the country is struggling to bounce back. Nearly 70 percent of the affected people still live in temporary shelters, and it is common to see damaged houses, temples without roofs, and earthquake debris lying around, even in the capital Kathmandu.

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Could the Iranian economy sink Rouhani?

For a “managed democracy,” Iran holds remarkably unpredictable presidential elections. And the upcoming election on May 19 is no exception, given that the incumbent, Hassan Rouhani, is facing two tough conservative challengers.

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The right to agricultural technology

In the 1960s, when biologist Paul Ehrlich was predicting mass starvation due to rapid population growth, plant breeder Norman Borlaug was developing the new crops and approaches to agriculture that would become mainstays of the Green Revolution.

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ASEAN at 50 needs to shape up

The slogan of ASEAN 2017 under its Philippine chairmanship – Partnership for Changes, Engaging the World – is telling. After five decades of existence, ASEAN continues to do what it has always done best – soul searching.

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Information warfare versus soft power

Russia's interference in the 2016 US presidential election, and its suspected hacking of French President Emmanuel Macron’s campaign servers, should surprise no one, given President Vladimir Putin’s (mis)understanding of soft power.

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Reforming fossil fuel subsidies in ASEAN, India and China

Energy is heavily subsidised across the globe and energy subsidies exert an extensive economic burden on many countries, particularly on developing economies.

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Asia: Preparing for choppy seas

The outlook for Asia and the Pacific is the strongest in the world, but it is shrouded by challenges at home and abroad, according to the latest IMF report for the region.

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Energy, economics, and the environment

To secure a low-carbon future and begin to address the challenge of climate change, the world needs more investment in renewable energy. So how do we get there?

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