[Photo story] The Hong Kong eateries we will miss

The F&B industry has been one of the hardest hit as the world goes through these extraordinary times. ThinkChina winds through the streets of Hong Kong for a look at the eateries and restaurants that have (temporarily) lost their battles with the months of political unrest and the raging Covid-19 pandemic.

Covid-19: East Asia must play a greater role

East Asian countries are showing early signs of getting the pandemic under control and must channel their relative stability towards spearheading the economic recovery of the region if they wish to play a larger role in shaping the international order post-Covid 19.

Stay well, my beautiful Taipei

The Taiwanese are looking increasingly lost and powerless as they face rising China-US competition and now, the pandemic. Zaobao correspondent Ng Soon Kiat reflects on the years he has spent in Taipei, and wishes the best for the beautiful island he has called home for more than three years.

Will China plunge into a food crisis? Officials say no

As the Covid-19 pandemic slows down in China, the panic-buying frenzy goes on. Chen Jing reports on people bulking up on supplies across China amid fears of a looming food shortage.

Arm wrestling in silence: China-US military scorecard under the shadow of the pandemic

Amid reports of being handicapped due to Covid-19 quarantines, the US military presses on to make its presence felt in the airspace near the Taiwan Strait and South China Sea. Chinese military commentator Song Zhongping says that despite these displays, the Chinese PLA has the distinct upper hand, being trained to handle the full scope of military operations including the outbreak of infectious diseases.

China will have too many mask-making factories

China is estimated to be making 200 million masks daily and may have too many mask-making factories in the near future. Chinese commentator Cai Enze envisages the likely scenario facing these enterprises scrambling to turn a quick profit out of mask manufacturing. Looking at the statistics, the world needs to better coordinate how these masks can reach pandemic-stricken countries in dire need of masks.

Families in Wuhan want accountability from those who covered up outbreak

With the lockdown on Wuhan about to be lifted on 8 April and the annual Qingming Festival just over, families in Wuhan are coming to terms with their losses. They want accountability from those who covered up the initial outbreak, even as they deal with the psychological impact of the coronavirus and lockdown.

Was China's three-minute silence enough to comfort its people?

On 4 April, the Chinese people observed a three-minute silence for the thousands of lives lost to the pandemic. However, Beijing correspondent Yu Zeyuan notes that accountability checks triggered by the Li Wenliang incident have not fully subsided and may possibly create a new political hoo-ha within and outside of China.

Taiwan author Chiang Hsun: One humanity, one world

Officials at the Taiwan district office have been calling quarantined individuals every day to check how they are doing. A beneficiary of such acts of duty and kindness, acclaimed Taiwan author and art historian Chiang Hsun feels immensely thankful. He reminds himself that no one should feel lucky facing the pandemic, and all this is but part of the pains and sorrows felt by all sentient beings under this universe.

An innovative China has overtaken the US in patent numbers?

Associate professor Kenneth Huang from the NUS Business School observes that by 2012, China had overtaken the US in terms of the number of patents filed domestically. But this does not mean that all the innovations filed were truly novel or valuable. His recent study on Chinese state-owned enterprises shows that self-serving human factors are at play.

Trump's America needs to ditch the blame game

Belgian writers Ng and Nimmegeers point out that the only thing much worse than possibly holding racist views, is to be aware of likely controversy yet politicise race issues anyway to deflect blame for the tardiness of the government. They believe that the Trump administration needs to stop playing the blame game and start on a sincere path of health cooperation with China, to tackle the pandemic today and any other global challenges tomorrow.

Wuhan businesses' quest for survival after 76-day lockdown

To help businesses get back on their feet, the Wuhan municipal government recently announced that it is raising 20 billion RMB to roll out a rescue package for small and medium enterprises (SMEs). On the ground, many companies find themselves in more dire straits now than when the city was under a complete lockdown, and business owners are generally not confident of surviving the present downturn.

Informal diplomacy: The way to solidarity in a global crisis

Away from the bright lights of formal diplomacy where barbs traded between governments are par for the course, the simple yet effective channel of people-to-people diplomacy is helping to thaw the ice around some hardened positions.

Amid the pandemic, is the China-US tech war firing up again?

The pandemic rages on in the US, but the Trump administration is not letting up on its efforts to keep Huawei in check. Will the China-US tech war come to the fore again as the political stakes are raised on both sides?

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.