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June 30, 2010
Aquino’s challenges
Today , Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, the scion of a legendary Philippine political family, was sworn in as the 15th president of the Philippines. More

June 29, 2010
Customs (departments) in Thailand and Philippines going in opposite directions
In today’s news is a story out of the Philippines that the Customs Department of the Philippines government has signed on to the Revised Kyoto Convention to bring its customs procedures up to world standards through simplification of its procedures and greater transparency. More

June 28, 2010
The G20 and Asean
In Toronto, the world’s largest economies cam together this past weekend and will meet again in November in Seoul. More

June 25, 2010
Reducing Inequality in Thailand
During the recent protests in Thailand, a major theme voiced by protest leaders, especially those with a Marxist-Leninist bent, was the great inequality between the rural poor and the wealthy Bangkokians. More

June 24, 2010
Asean energy concerns
Energy, the lack of it and the means to obtain more to support industrial and domestic needs, is a growing concern for many Asean countries. More

June 23, 2010
Uncertainty in Thailand
A chance e-mail from an American relative enquiring if I were anywhere near the “political unrest” in Bangkok, brought a quick response from me, “Where have you been since May 19?”  More

June 22, 2010
Asean cooperation-a work in progress
Sending a message to Thai investors, the director-general of Thailand’s National Economic and Social Development Board, Ampon Kitti-ampon, today advised the investors to more fully cooperate with the nine other member states of Asean.More

June 21, 2010
Ageing in Asean: window of opportunity?
One of today’s news items detailing the plans of Singapore’s housing authority to tailor housing to meet the needs of an ageing population and the influx of new immigrants, suggested a look at demographic change in the Asean countries. More

June 19, 2010
Weekly Summary
Asean Affairs writer, Paul Ebeling Jnr. Ended this week with this noteworthy report on Asean-Chinese trade: “In the first five months of 2010, total bilateral trade between China and Asean nations reached US$112 billion, an increase of about 58 percent, signaling that Asean nations have collectively surpassed Japan to become China's third largest trading partner. More

June 18, 2010
The world’s sense of physical closeness
This article was prompted by a Skype conference call this morning between the Asean Affairs staff and a colleague in Bangalore, India, and it brought to my mind: Is the human race closer or farther apart in the 21st century? Different cultures have a different sense of how close people should be to each other and this sense varies from country to country and region to region and person to person. More

June 17, 2010
Too much pollution
One cannot read the daily news without coming across the dire reports and photos from the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.  More

June 16, 2010
Holier than thou?
The 10th annual U.S. Trafficking in Persons Report released this past Monday by the U.S. State Department has been criticized by a wide range of countries ranging from Cuba to Singapore. More

June 15, 2010
Lack of anticorruption measures still haunts Asean
The initiative of the Thai government of Prime Minister Abhisit Vejajiva to buy back its former satellite operation, Thaicom Plc from an investment arm of Singapore, in the interest of national and quite frankly, its own political interests, recalls an old theme in Asean member states: the lack of legal and enforceable restraints on its leaders from having their way with public funds and assets. More

June 14, 2010
Mobile phones fuel change in Asia
Although commercial mobile phones have been an emerging technology for more than 50 years, it was not until I first visited the Asia, starting in the 1990s that I grasped the dramatic effects that this communication device would have on Asia, particularly in Asean countries.  More

June 12, 2010
What are we waiting for?
This past week in Bangkok was pure delight.
Although much of the rest of Thailand is suffering from drought conditions, Bangkok received several evening and early morning showers that helped bring the temperatures down. This has been a great break from the April-May period, when temperatures soared both climatologically and politically.

June 11, 2010
Recent election may signal a new day in Philippine democracy
As is often the case in Asean, there are varying degrees of democracy in each of the 10 member countries, but the recent election of Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino - the son of the former president, Corazon Aquino, has been received well internationally and on the home front and may signal a new day in Philippine politics.More

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