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Asean Affairs  23  January 2011


By  David Swartzentruber

AseanAffairs     23 January 2011

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January 20,2011
Nuclear power in Asean

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January 18,2011
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January 17,2011
The diplomatic initiative on Myanmar

January 15,2011

January 14,2011
World Bank’s 2011 economic outlook

These were the most important stories published by Asean Affairs during the week of January 15-21.

Vietnam may allow businessmen to join Communist Party
Vietnam may officially allow private business owners to jopin the Communist Party for the first time, a move that could boost the country's image with foreign investors a decade after China adopted similar measures.

Asean ICT Masterplan adopted
The 10th Asean Telecommunications and IT Ministers (TELMIN) meeting here ended on a highly-successful note in Kuala Lumpur with the launch of the Asean ICT Masterplan as a definitive action plan to enhance connectivity among Southeast Asian nations and raise their competitiveness in the international arena.

Asean pushes for Myanmar boycott end
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations has agreed unanimously to call on the international community to end its boycott of Burma.

Reproductive health bill moves to Philippine Congress
THE controversial reproductive health (RH) measure and the freedom of information (FOI) bill are on top of Congress' agenda when it resumes sessions today.

Nuclear energy for Malaysia
The recent flooding catastrophe in Australia that pushed up the coal price makes the case for Malaysia to seriously consider nuclear power to generate electricity, Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) president and chief executive officer, Datuk Seri Che Khalib Mohamad Noh said.

Chinese increase Thai investment
Chinese enterprises are boosting their investments in Thailand with the first of three joint ventures with Thai partners being a sprawling wholesale trading centre worth 6.2 billion yuan (Bt28.8 billion) near Bangkok.

Singapore fertility falls to record low
Preliminary estimates show that Singapore's total fertility rate dropped to a record low of 1.16 in 2010.This is even lower than the 1.22 in 2009, and well below the replacement rate of 2.1. READ MORE:

Indonesia gets rating increase to 13-year peak
Moody's Investors Service gave Indonesia another nudge toward investment grade by raising the nation's sovereign rating, taking into account the economy's ability to weather the downturn, its manageable debt load and rising investment from overseas.

Thai bourse's index soars 41 percent above 2010
The overview performance of the Thai capital market in 2010 improved year-on-year, whether in terms of indices, market capitalization, or trading value. The Stock Exchange of Thailand's SET Index closed 2010 at 1,032.76, up 40.60 percent from end-2009 and the second biggest rise in Asia.

Singapore Exchange to boast world's fastest trading engine
The Singapore Exchange (SGX), Asia's second-largest listed bourse operator, said today it will launch the world's fastest trading engine, called SGX Reach, on August 15 as it tries to compete with rivals.

Asean-China outlook
Asean and Chinese business leaders have expressed confidence in trade and investment prospects between the two sides and have set a combined target of 15 trillion baht by 2015. READ MORE:

Indonesian coal producer sees banner year
Bumi Resources, Indonesia's top thermal coal producer, forecast strong revenue growth this year as coal demand surged, a top executive said.

Thais skeptical of China City mall
The arrival of a Chinese mega-mall has raised huge concerns that cheaper goods and strong financial support from China will hurt small Thai businesses throughout the supply chain from manufacturing to wholesale centers and community shops.

Thaksin's ghost hangs over Thai telecoms
With fugitive former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra now a citizen of Montenegro, the Thai government insists that it is not singling out his old telecom firm, Advanced Info Service, in its investigations into telecom concession amendments.

Impressive FDI growth in Malaysia
Investor confidence has returned strongly to Malaysia, says International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.

Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr

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ASEAN NEWS UPDATES      Updated: 04 January 2011

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This year in Thailand-what next?

04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More

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