East Asia: Publications

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  • Can Taiwan Talk ‘Political’ with the Mainland?

    An investigation into the prospects for including political talks in the cross-strait dialogue enables a better assessment of cross-strait relations. China’s push for political talks and Taiwan’s resistance to them imply that their political positions on the fundamental issues of sovereignty and ‘living space’ for Taiwan remain unchanged. Considering Taiwan’s complex domestic political scenario, which is largely against unification with Mainland China, the likelihood of Taiwan agreeing to political talks for unification is remote.

    May 2015

    An Assessment of the Chinese Dream: 2015

    In November 2012, soon after the conclusion of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), President Xi Jinping put forward for the first time the idea of the ‘Chinese Dream’. In March 2013, Xi further elaborated on this concept at the closing ceremony of the First Session of the 12th National People’s Congress.

    May 2015

    Future of India–China Boundary: Leadership Holds the Key?

    Will India and China resolve their boundary dispute during the tenure of Narendra Modi and Xi Jinping? The strategic communities in both countries are optimistic, particularly after the high tension prevailing along the border during President Xi Jinping’s tour of India in September 2014. Both Prime Minister Modi and President Xi are seen as decisive leaders.1 Both are expected to hold power in their respective countries for a few years to come. Personalities and personas matter greatly for scoring political brownie points. The boundary dispute, quintessentially, is political in nature.

    May 2015

    China’s ‘Maritime Bases’ in the IOR: A Chronicle of Dominance Foretold

    After a successful visit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Colombo in March, Indian policy elite are hopeful that the new Sri Lankan government will roll-back some of the geopolitical concessions made by the Rajapaksa regime to Beijing, thereby restoring India’s primacy in its near neighbourhood. India’s policy elite are hopeful that Maithripala Sirisena, the new president, will roll back some of the geopolitical concessions made by his predecessor to Beijing, thereby restoring Indian primacy in its near neighbourhood.

    May 2015

    China’s Asia Strategy under President Xi Jinping

    China has reoriented its foreign policy strategy since Xi Jinping became president. This could significantly recast China’s relations with Asian countries. The process that began with Xi Jinping’s coming to power in 2012–2013 reached, in a sense, a definitive moment, with the Central Conference on Work Relating to Foreign Affairs held in Beijing in November 2014.

    May 2015

    Reconsidering the Paracel Islands Dispute: An International Law Perspective

    The Paracel Islands dispute has recently resurfaced as a source of conflict between Vietnam and China, who both claim sovereignty over the islands from ‘time immemorial’. This article re-examines their respective claims from an international law perspective. It also focuses on delineating the respective claims with emphasis on sovereignty, territory and self-determination. Based on available sources, this article suggests that Vietnam appears to have a more credible sovereignty claim over the Paracel Islands vis-à-vis China.

    November 2015

    Recasting Sino-Indian Relations: Towards a Closer Development Partnership

    Sino-Indian relations were governed by concerns about an unsound bilateral bonhomie, internal as well as external strategic and political considerations, and in addition, national interests and priorities not necessarily oriented towards pacifying the bilateral relations.

    November 2015

    Dalai Lama Central to Resolution of the Tibet Issue

    Since June 2013, there has been a spate of activity on the Tibet controversy. Sparking it off was the interview of Professor Jin Wei1 from the Central Party School in Asian Weekly2 on June 6, entitled ‘Reopen Talks and Resolve Tibetan Issues’, in which she advocated engaging the Dalai Lama rather than demonising him. Soon after, the International Campaign of Tibet reported that China had lifted the 17-year ban on the display of Dalai Lama portraits in Sichuan and Qinghai.

    January 2014

    Factoring the RCEP and the TPP: China, India and the Politics of Regional Integration

    The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) are not necessarily two contending trade liberalising models, but their import and arrival have posed stiff political challenges for many countries, including China and India, Asia’s two heavyweights. With these two initiatives, the regional trade of Asia is entering an interesting phase of liberalisation and integration.

    January 2014

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