The lies of globalisation

Seeing what was going on in China and how this would affect global supply chains, the West should have predicted the pandemonium they are facing now, says Chip Tsao. One radical thought he proposes is to impose a forced lockdown of the world, letting the virus die a natural death. But even that is but an impossible dream. Ultimately, the pandemic's greatest gift to mankind is forcing one and all to confront the hard truths of globalisation.

The impact of Covid-19 on the agriculture sector in China

Vincent Martin, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) representative in China and North Korea, shares his thoughts on the Chinese government’s efforts to limit the impact of Covid-19 on agriculture and food security in China. He remains sanguine that the country has enough wind in its sails to see it through this tough period and embark firmly on new beginnings.

Japanese academic: Battling Covid-19 is not a global match of going for gold

Shin Kawashima says that China needs to tread carefully in the ways that it is publicising its efforts in helping other nations battle the Covid-19 pandemic. Excessive propaganda tends to backfire and create huge perception gaps between China and the rest of the world, which will not be a good thing if it hopes to increase its soft power in the days and months ahead.

Will China also move into the 'post-LKY era'?

Among all of Singapore’s leaders, one name is most closely associated with Singapore: Lee Kuan Yew, or simply LKY. Five years after his passing, has Singapore moved on from his style of strong leadership and what will other countries who are keen to follow the country’s same developmental trajectory do in shaping their political systems?

Globalisation as we know it shall come to an end

Zheng Weibin thinks that strategic rivalry between China and the US will only intensify in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis. As the US moves to close off its vulnerabilities in the global supply chain, will Europe do the same and if so, what will the new face of globalisation look like?

Unexpected digital age hazards amid the Covid-19 pandemic

Yin Ruizhi says citizen journalism gone awry and the further erosion of privacy by governments in the name of tackling the Covid-19 pandemic are some of the risks brought about by the digital age.

Amid domestic political change, Malaysia sticks to trusted formula for South China Sea disputes

After decades, claims by various countries in the South China Sea remain unresolved. ISEAS senior fellow Ian Storey focuses on Malaysia, noting that while its leadership has changed, its strategy towards handling China with regard to the South China Sea has remained the same.

Wake-up call for ASEAN countries: Curb over-reliance on China and seize opportunities of global supply chain restructuring

After this battle with the Covid-19 coronavirus, each ASEAN country should step up its emergency preparedness and national resilience capacities in dealing with similar pandemics. But health concerns aside, the outbreak also highlights the region’s high reliance on China in economics and trade. As global supply chains realign in the wake of the crisis, Southeast Asian countries should implement bold domestic reforms and vigorously develop their manufacturing sectors to be in the best position to reap the benefits.

China raises its international game with ‘pandemic diplomacy’ in Europe

While China has been diligently making hay while the sun shines, so to speak, in conducting “pandemic diplomacy”, experts assess that its relations with countries in Europe will improve but the US will still hold on to its dominance in the international arena.

Visiting the doctor as a foreigner in China: I wish they will not become complacent

Lianhe Zaobao’s Beijing correspondent Yang Danxu recounts her recent visit seeking medical treatment in Beijing in times of Covid-19. She extrapolates from her experience of being initially turned away and sounds a reminder to officials not to let complacency or a wish to maintain a positive recovery record lead to China facing a recurrent rash of outbreaks.

Visiting the doctor as a foreigner in China: I see potential for collaboration

It was a very different time when Kwek So Cheer visited the doctor in China prior to the Covid-19 outbreak. Nevertheless, recent events have highlighted the need for countries to band together, sharing knowledge and expertise, not least in healthcare management. Speaking from personal experience, Kwek thinks that Singapore can collaborate with China to build a better healthcare experience beyond this special period.

Making the great leap forward: When will the Chinese person stand up?

Mao said that “the Chinese people have stood up” when he proclaimed the People’s Republic of China in 1949. Lance Gore from the East Asian Institute says, more than 70 years later, if a Chinese person cannot speak his mind without fear of recrimination, one can hardly profess that the Chinese people have truly stood up.

[Photo story] Cherry blossoms are blooming in Wuhan, but is it spring yet?

In these days of Covid-19, the world needs hope. As spring descends and the world renews itself, the cherry blossoms in Wuhan — where the coronavirus was first reported — remind us to take heart that no matter how long it takes, this too shall pass. (Did you know that the cherry blossoms in Wuhan University were first planted by the Japanese army during WWII?)

Chinese doctor in the UK: Presumed words of surrender were exactly what Britons needed to hear

At first, it seemed that the UK was adopting a rather lax approach to handling the outbreak, hoping to delay its spread, rather than contain it. But Hayson Wang opines that the government's perceived posture of "surrendering to the outbreak“ has actually spurred the UK public into taking more precautions. In recent days, both in response to rising criticism as well as rising fatalities — the death toll is currently 335 — the UK looks to be going the harsher way of some of its neighbours, announcing a lockdown that will last for at least three weeks.

Falling revenue, absent staff... Tough road ahead for China's SMEs

Micro, small, and medium enterprises assets account for 77% of the total assets of Chinese enterprises, while their annual revenue contributes 68% of the total amount of annual revenue of Chinese enterprises. Chen Jing, Lianhe Zaobao’s Shanghai correspondent reports that as the coronavirus outbreak in China eases off, SMEs in China are doing their level best to get their businesses up and running again. But the way forward looks to be all uphill.

Irate Chinese netizens lash out at Hong Kong SARS hero Yuen Kwok-yung

Hong Kong academic Yuen Kwok-yung was a prominent figure in bringing the 2003 SARS epidemic under control. But he has recently sparked anger in mainland China for his commentary on the Covid-19 outbreak, leading to a subsequent retraction of the piece. Zaobao’s Associate China News Editor Fok Yit Wai asks: "Will Beijing boycott Yuen?"

Powerless, helpless and downtrodden: The state of Chinese literature in this pandemic

In today’s age where it seems that all great literature has been written, Yan Lianke has a modest wish for aspiring writers in China. He hopes that they will have the space to create works, unfettered by thoughts of going against the grain. He believes that creating a culture that allows for dissenting voices in literature is far more important and desperately needed than creating a single or a few accidental great literary works.