Asia Pacific

  • The weakening yen likely will lead the Japanese government and BOJ to act.

    Investors Anticipate Fiscal and Monetary Stimulus from Japan

    The US dollar is broadly mixed against the major currencies.  The Swiss franc's 0.25% gain puts it at the top of the board, after sterling's earlier gains were largely unwound in late-morning turnover.  The yen is the weakest major, extending its loss by 0.6%, to bring the weekly decline to more than 5%.  The pre-referendum result high for the dollar was near JPY106.85.  Today's high has been about JPY106.30. In emerging markets, we note that the Taiwanese dollar is at 11-month highs, helped by $3 bln portfolio capital inflow this week.   

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  • Women are helping transform North Korea's economy.

    North Korea's Collapsing Command Economy's Affect on Women

    Important changes are taking place inside North Korea. The collapse of the command economy, and the emergence of capitalism in its place, is ongoing. A burgeoning moneyed elite and increasing exposure to foreign pop culture are transforming how North Korean femininity is conceived. These changes are reaching far beyond Pyongyang to affect many, if not most, women in the country.

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  • Can China duplicate its regional hegemony globally?

    China was a Regional Preeminent Power for Centuries, and it is Trying Again

    Most of us have never known a world where the United States was not the preeminent power. Now things are starting to look rather different. Not only is much of the global economy stuck in an underperforming rut, but there is also an alternative, seemingly more successful, model of economic development on offer in the so-called ‘Beijing consensus’.

    It is precisely this reality, and the hitherto impressive performance of the Chinese economy, that has led some to conclude that, as Martin Jacques puts it, China will ultimately ‘rule the world’.

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  • Abe gets the upper hand in the upper house.

    How to Successfully Wield a Supermajority

    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party and its junior coalition partner, Komeito, have won 70 of the 121 seats up for grabs in the upper house triennial elections held on Sunday 10 July. The seats obtained in the upper house are not only many more than the ruling coalition’s 61 seat target, but deliver a two-thirds majority in the upper house for constitutional revision when taking into account other pro-revision political parties.

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  • China's economic transformation is moving at a glacial pace.

    China's Changing Economy...it will Take a While

    China is undergoing profound changes in its economic policy and structure. These changes represent a new model of Chinese economic growth. The recent Five Year Plan (FYP) is an evolutionary document. Building on earlier official statements on the new model of growth, it provides the most elaborate statement to date on the model’s content and implementation.

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  • Cambodia should keep one eye open regarding Chinese aid.

    Are there Strings Attached to Cambodia's Chinese Aid?

    In a 2006 speech, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen praised China, saying that ‘China talks less but does a lot’. China is certainly doing a lot in Cambodia, becoming the country’s largest aid donor and source of foreign investment.

    Between 1994 and 2013, Chinese investment in Cambodia was about US$10 billion, focused mainly on agriculture, mining, infrastructure projects, hydropower dams and garment production. Since 1992, China has also provided around US$3 billion in concessional loans and grants to Cambodia.

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  • President Duterte's image abroad hasn't dented his domestic popularity.

    Does Philippine President Duterte Need a Better International Image?

    Since the election of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte as the next Philippine president in a landslide victory on 9 May 2016, the regional and international media have highlighted his outrageous remarks on various sensitive topics. For instance, he backed the extra-judicial killings of drug dealers, alleged that journalists were killed because they were corrupt and called Philippine bishops critical of him ‘sons of whores’. None of these remarks has dented his domestic support.

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