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Commentaries

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Commentary: End of centrist democracy and Asia’s unconventional systems
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By Simon Tay For The Straits Times As centrist parties falter in Western democracies, Asian countries such as Thailand, Indonesia and India offer lessons on how political systems can bring stability Last month, the world witnessed its two largest democratic votes - in India and across Europe -...

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Commentary: Ending coal financing, and jump-starting sustainability
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By Simon Tay and Lau Xin Yi All major Singapore banks recently announced that they will stop financing new coal-fired power plants. This is significant in aligning Singapore as a financial hub with the position of many Western financial institutions. But it opens up more questions...

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Commentary: Making sustainable consumption of palm oil the norm in Asia
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By Chen Chen Lee and Lau Xin Yi For The Jakarta Post Relations between the European Union and Malaysia and Indonesia hit an obstacle when Malaysia’s Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and Indonesia’s Coordinating Maritime Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan recently threatened to boycott EU’s products if the bloc...

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Commentary: Thailand must take action for cleaner air in Asean
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By Simon Tay and Liyana Othman For Bangkok Post When complaints are made about the haze crisis and air pollution in Southeast Asia, most usually think about fires in Indonesia's provinces, which have been a recurrent problem for over two decades. However, the situation this year has been different...

Photo by farfar on Unsplash - article - 430 x 241px
Commentary: Myanmar — investors should be cautious but take the risk
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By Simon Tay For Nikkei Asian Review A humanitarian crisis that has been brewing at the border between Myanmar and Bangladesh since 2016 is reaching a critical point. At Cox's Bazar, just inside Bangladesh, an estimated 740,000 displaced Muslim Rohingya from Myanmar's Rakhine State are encamped in...

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash - article - 430 x 241px
Commentary: Big Tech’s challenges for Asean
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By Chen Chen Lee and Erin Low For The Straits Times For Big Tech, the year 2018 marks the beginning of "techlash", as it is forced to confront a public awakened to and repulsed by its multiple failures in protecting user privacy, providing value for customers and...