South China Morning Post

Gridlocked and flood-prone, Vietnam’s biggest city struggles to keep pace with its own breakneck growth

As soon as the roads are widened a fresh glut of cars moves in to fill them, says lifelong Ho Chi Minh City resident Thinh Pham, who fears urban planning is forever condemned to lag behind the unrelenting growth of one of Southeast Asia’s most ...

Michael Tatarski

Thailand rolls out red carpet for wealthy foreign workers with 10-year visa, tax breaks

Thailand, called the “Land of Smiles,” is rolling out the red carpet for foreign workers, joining a bevy of countries looking to use the immigration route to boost their economies. Top professionals, eligible high-net-worth individuals and retirees can start applying online from Thursday to stay for ...

Bloomberg

‘It can be pretty horrifying’: how Cambodia’s land grabs are ruining lives

The monk looks haggard in the midmorning sun, scanning the views through surrounding trees while chainsaws drone in the near distance. “It’s as if a storm has come and the animals have fled like there has been a hurricane,” he says from his sparse, open-air pagoda ...

Andrew Haffner

China pledges to share more data on the Mekong River with downstream nations

China will share more data on the Mekong River with countries downstream, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said, amid long-standing criticism that its projects have caused flooding and drought in the river’s lower reaches. This was to “share the dividends of cooperation and push development”, Wang said ...

Jack Lau

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

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