Malaysia

Singapore Arts Fest Pushes Boundaries Beyond Tradition

As Singapore mourns the passing of Lee Kuan Yew, the late former prime minister’s vision of a dynamic and vibrant state is being reflected in a major arts festival in France.

Indonesia’s Palm Oil Industry in Need of a Makeover

Over the past three decades, 50 percent of the 544,150 square kilometres that comprise Kalimantan, the Indonesian portion of the island of Borneo, has been taken over by the palm oil industry.

OPINION: The Politics of Biodiversity Loss

To mainstream biodiversity concerns into development planning, we must offer a compelling rationale and demonstrate biodiversity’s relevance to wealth generation, job creation and general human wellbeing. Only a persuasive “why” resonating throughout society will successfully get us to urgently needed negotiations of who, what, where, when and how to halt disastrous biodiversity loss.

Obama’s Free Trade Strategy Falters in Asia

Amid simmering territorial conflicts across the Western Pacific, specifically between China and its neighbours in the South and East China Seas, coupled with China rising to the rank of top trading partner with Japan, South Korea, Australia and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the Obama administration has been hard-pressed to re-assert its strategic footprint in the region.

Ghost of the LTTE Flickers in Malaysia

The recent arrest and deportation from Malaysia of three Sri Lankan Tamils on U.N. refugee status, under suspicion of trying to revive the disbanded Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), has raised questions about regional security and minority politics.

Obama’s Half-Pivot to Asia

President Barack Obama’s recent tour of Asia was an opportunity to reenergise his foreign policy after a series of setbacks in the global arena.

Obama Seeks to Reassure Anxious Asians on “Rebalance”

As he embarks Tuesday on a major trip through East Asia, U.S. President Barack Obama will be focused on reassuring anxious – albeit sometimes annoying – allies that Washington remains determined to deepen its commitment to the region.

Mars Latest to Announce “No Deforestation” Palm Oil Pledge

The multinational food giant Mars, Inc. unveiled Monday a new set of guidelines aimed at ensuring that its palm oil supply lines are completely traceable and sustainable by next year.

Myanmar Ethnic Strife Spills Over to Malaysia

Two Myanmar Buddhist politicians who were visiting Malaysia narrowly escaped a late night assassination attempt outside a leading shopping mall in Kuala Lumpur this month. The incident has raised fears of an overseas spillover of the religious violence that has engulfed their state of Rakhine in recent years.


Q&A: Indonesia Still at High Risk for Catastrophic Fires

In June, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia were enveloped in haze as hundreds of forest fires burned across the island of Sumatra, in the worst pollution crisis to hit Southeast Asia in more than a decade.

U.S., Malaysia Skirmish over Free-Trade Tobacco

Between concluding rounds of negotiations towards the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a major U.S.-proposed free trade agreement, a divisive fight has heated up over the extent to which countries should be allowed to regulate the sale of foreign – potentially far cheaper – tobacco products.

Ivory Course Runs From Africa to Malaysia to China

A distance of nearly 9,000 kilometres separates Malaysia from Africa, but that hasn’t stopped the Southeast Asian nation from becoming a key staging post in the illegal trade of ivory from Africa to China.

Thailand Brings Same-Sex Marriage Debate to Asia

A draft law being readied for parliament that seeks to offer lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) couples the same legal rights as heterosexual couples could make Thailand the first country in Southeast Asia to legalise gay marriage.

Indonesia Comes under Fire for Fires

With a propensity to devour everything in their path and spiral quickly out of control, leaving behind swathes of scorched earth, forest fires are considered a hazard in most parts of the world. In Indonesia, however, fires are the preferred method for clearing large areas of land for massive plantations of commercial crops.

Indonesia’s Recurring Forest Fires Threaten Environment

Indonesia's forest fires, a predictable annual ritual, will continue to have serious implications for health and the environment in Southeast Asia unless the government strengthens forest protection, warn environmental groups.

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