South China Morning Post

Vietnam coffee farmers turn to avocados and durians as Ukraine war pushes up fertiliser costs

Coffee growers in top producer Vietnam are planting more profitable crops like avocados, black pepper and durians, which is helping them cope with the soaring fertiliser and fuel costs caused by the war in Ukraine. Even with the extra income from these additional crops, farmers are still ...

Bloomberg

Myanmar online wildlife trade on rise, says WWF report; threat to public health and endangered species

A report by the World Wildlife Fund shows illegal purchases of wildlife online are growing in Myanmar in a threat both to public health and to endangered species. The report issued Friday found that enforcement of bans on such transactions has weakened amid political turmoil ...

Agence France-Presse

Xi-Asean summit boosts China’s plan to upgrade Southeast Asia ties to comprehensive strategic partnership

China’s long-held plan to upgrade ties with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) to a higher tier of diplomatic recognition could come to fruition during next month’s special summit between President Xi Jinping and the bloc’s leaders, observers have said. The prime ministers of Malaysia and Singapore signalled their readiness to participate ...

Bhavan Jaipragas

Japan resumes meeting with 5 Mekong countries after suspending it due to Myanmar coup

Japan is expected to use its meeting on Friday with the five Mekong River states to reiterate its commitment to the region, although analysts said it will also aim to reinforce its foreign policy objective of countering China’s influence. Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi will hold ...

Julian Ryall

How Asean’s Covid-19 recovery measures are missing opportunities for a green future

More than a year after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak a public health emergency, the – a region with a combined GDP of US$9.34 trillion and a population of more than 650 million – has not recovered from the global economic tumult ...

Melinda Martinus and Sharon Seah

Advantage China, as democracy slides from view in Southeast Asia

As Myanmar’s dark era of junta rule began winding down in 2011 with the bold reforms initiated by the quiet ex-general, President Thein Sein, other events happening across Southeast Asia gave reformists hope this was not an isolated instance of democratic progress.   That year, Yingluck Shinawatra ...

Bhavan Jaipragas

Mekong dam: China cuts river flow 50 per cent, is slammed for lack of warning

China’s decision to hold back the Mekong River’s water flow at a hydropower dam for close to a month will disrupt fisheries and local livelihoods along the waterway that is a lifeline for 60 million people, watchers and activists have warned. The Chinese water resources ministry ...

Catherine Wong and Maria Siow

Satellites to track Chinese dams on Mekong river, as US likens ‘threat’ facing Southeast Asia to South China Sea

Threats to Southeast Asian unity on the Mekong are as “existential” as those in the South China Sea, according to the United States, which this week launched a project that will use satellites to track water levels at Chinese dams along the river.   David Stilwell, US ...

Maria Siow

US claims China’s ‘manipulation’ of Mekong is ‘urgent challenge’ for Southeast Asia

A senior US diplomat on Thursday said China’s “manipulation” of water flows in the Mekong River – currently at record lows – was an immediate challenge to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, signalling the issue could be on the agenda in a regional forum ...

Bhavan Jaipragas

Vietnam dodged the coronavirus bullet, so why are its workers struggling?

Along a busy highway on the outskirts of Vietnam’s largest city, a worn-out looking woman carrying all her worldly possessions in a handful of plastic bags picks her way through a web of swaying hammocks, looking for one that’s empty so she can lay her ...

Sen Nguyen

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