December 2018
« Nov    
(Premium): Commentary ASEAN ASEAN (R) ASEAN-ISIS Chen Chen Lee Country (R): Indonesia Country (R): Malaysia Country (R): Myanmar Country (R): Philippines Country (R): Singapore Country: ASEAN Country: Australia Country: Cambodia Country: China Country: Germany Country: India Country: Indonesia Country: Japan Country: Laos Country: Malaysia Country: Myanmar Country: North Korea Country: Philippines Country: Qatar Country: Russia Country: Singapore Country: Singapore Country: South Korea Country: Taiwan Country: Thailand Country: UK Country: US Country: USA Country: Vietnam donald trump Elections: Indonesia 2019 Elections: Thailand 2019 European Union Event: SDSWR Events: AAF Focus CH: Hong Kong Focus JP: Abenomics Focus MM: Rakhine State Focus MY: GE14 Focus SG: SG Secure Focus SG: Smart Nation Focus SG: Society Focus TH: Protests Focus UK: Brexit Fukushima Global Citizens Singapore Institute: ERIA Institute: EU Centre in Singapore Institute: SIIA Leaders: Aung San Suu Kyi Leaders: Jokowi Leaders: Kim Jong Un Leaders: Lee Hsien Loong Leaders: Lee Kuan Yew Leaders: Mahathir Mohamad Leaders: Obama Leaders: Trump Myanmar: NLD Nicholas Fang Org: AIIB Org: G20 Region: Africa Region: Asia Region: Latin America Region: Middle East Reports Simon Tay Topic (Environment): Peatland Topic (Environment): Smallholders Topic (R): Belt and Road Topic (R): Business Topic (R): Digitisation Topic (R): E-Commerce Topic (R): Economy Topic (R): Green Finance Topic (R): Infrastructure Topic (R): Palm Oil Topic (R): Peatland Topic (R): Smallholders Topic (R): Sustainability Topic: Anti-Globalisation Topic: Belt and Road Topic: Business Topic: Development Topic: Digitisation Topic: E-Commerce Topic: Economics Topic: Elections Topic: Environment Topic: Finance Topic: Global Citizens Topic: Globalisation Topic: Green Finance Topic: Haze Topic: Human Rights Topic: Human Trafficking Topic: Infrastructure Topic: Investment Topic: Labour Topic: Nuclear Topic: Palm Oil Topic: Race Topic: Regional Integration Topic: Religion Topic: Security Topic: Small States Topic: SMEs Topic: Sustainability Topic: Sustainable/Green Infrastructure Topic: Trade Trade: AEC Trade: CPTPP Trade: FTA Trade: FTAAP Trade: Multilateralism Trade: RCEP Trade: TPP Trade: War Trends (Digital): Cybersecurity Trends (Digital): Data privacy Trends (Digital): Data security Trends (Digital): Digital Economy Trends (Digital): Digitisation Trends (Digital): Facebook Trends (Digital): New Media Trends (Digital): Smart Cities Trends (Environment): Air pollution Trends (Environment): Climate Change Trends (Environment): Energy Trends (Environment): Green Growth Trends (Environment): Hotspots Trends (Environment): Riau Trends (Environment): RSPO Trends (Environment): Sustainability Trends (Environment): Water Trends (Globalisation): ASEAN Citizens Trends (Globalisation): Populism Trends (Globalisation): Workers Rights Trends (Security): South China Sea Trends (Security): Terrorism Trends (Social): Demographics Trends (Social): Diversity United States us midterm elections WTO

SIIA Chairman Simon Tay interviewed by Phoenix Television on South China Sea ruling


16 Jul SIIA Chairman Simon Tay interviewed by Phoenix Television on South China Sea ruling

SIIA Chairman Simon Tay was interviewed by Phoenix Television, commenting on how ASEAN is responding to the South China Sea ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague. The video is available from and a transcript is available on the SIIA website.

VIDEO: 东盟:不会就南海仲裁案结果发表联合声明 [Phoenix TV, 16 Jul 2016]

Phoenix TV (Mandarin): ASEAN diplomats said on the 14th that they would not issue a unified response to the court decision. This indicates a rift within ASEAN between member countries with regards to the decision. An expert from the Singapore Institute of International Affairs (SIIA) believes that ASEAN countries should realise that disputes involving only certain ASEAN member states should be dealt with on a bilateral basis by the countries involved

Phoenix TV (Mandarin): According to reports from diplomats of the countries involved, ASEAN was considering taking a unified stand in response to the ruling, but were unable to arrive at a consensus. Hence no response was issued. A scholar from the SIIA believes it is important to realise that it is impossible for the ten ASEAN member countries to arrive at complete consensus on every issue, and that disputes involving specific states must be dealt with on a bilateral level.

Prof. Simon Tay: ASEAN must also face up to the limits of its unity. If we overemphasise unity, we will actually force ourselves to say – is this price worth paying? If today we went to Laos and said: No, you must side with the Philippines – but Laos has got a physical border with China. It’s receiving Chinese trade and investment. The price will be too high. Then it might leave ASEAN.

Phoenix TV (Mandarin): It is important to use diplomatic means to defuse this uneasy period in ASEAN foreign relations. If ASEAN overly emphasises the dispute, it will escalate militarisation of US-China relationship in South China Sea. As a result, ASEAN members may become influenced by geopolitical factors and turn towards the West

Prof. Simon Tay: So I’m against over-focusing on the South China Sea, because that will militarise the relationship between China and the US, as well as between the US and the various ASEAN member states. But funnily, or sadly, it’s the easiest thing for America to emphasise, because America’s military strength within our region remains very strong. So I’m hoping that post-decision, the South China Sea can be a bit calmer so we can see the totality, be much more balanced in the US-ASEAN, US-Asia relationship.

Phoenix TV (Mandarin): The scholar from the SIIA pointed out that the ASEAN meeting next week will be held in Laos, the South China Sea issue will once again become a talking point. Each country involved, especially the US and the Philippines, should exercise restraint in discussing the issue and adopt a rational standpoint.

Photo Credit: Phoenix TV