Edwin Ong

Chongqing Correspondent, Lianhe Zaobao

Edwin has been with Zaobao China Desk since 2015, and has assumed the role as Chongqing Correspondent since April 2019. Based in the operating hub of the Chongqing Connectivity Initiative, he monitors the political, economic and social development of China's emerging western region, simultaneously keeping an eye on technological trends and developments in China's rural hinterland.

A visitor holds his mobile phone near a screen showing Chinese President Xi Jinping at Wuhan Parlor Convention Center in Wuhan, Hubei province, China, 31 December 2020. (Tingshu Wang/Reuters)

China's softening stance on its ‘no limits’ relations with Russia

The lateral move of “Russia expert” Le Yucheng from the Chinese foreign ministry to the National Radio and Television Administration is undoubtedly a career setback for the man once tipped to be the next foreign minister. Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong explores possible reasons for the move and opines that it could indicate Beijing's changing attitude towards Russia and the war in Ukraine.
A file photo of Chen Min'er. (SPH Media)

Chongqing party secretary Chen Min’er is the man to watch

After nearly five years, Chongqing party secretary Chen Min’er has delivered a good report card in terms of helping to put political blights to rest and making tangible strides in poverty alleviation. Looking ahead, Chongqing is expected to focus on high-quality economic development, whether or not Chen is parachuted out before the 20th Party Congress. Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong examines the issue.
Pedestrians carry shopping bags on Geary street in San Francisco, California, US, on 18 May 2022. (David Paul Morris/Bloomberg)

Can high inflation in the US bring an end to the China-US trade war?

With inflation reaching historic highs, the Biden administration is facing a challenging road ahead of the midterm elections in November. The lifting of some tariffs on China could ease inflation in the US and appease voters, bringing an end to the China-US trade war. However, views in the White House are mixed. Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong speaks with academics to find out more.
Ukrainian soldiers stand next to the grave of a civilian, who according to residents was killed by Russian soldiers, amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Bucha, Kyiv region, Ukraine, 6 April 2022. (Alkis Konstantinidis/Reuters)

Will China condemn Russia over reports of war crimes in Ukraine?

In the Ukraine conflict, China has stuck to its awkward stance of condemning the war but not the aggressor. As Europe loses patience and draws closer to the US, and international vitriol mounts hard and fast, will China be forced to change tack?
A train on the China-Europe Railway Express, commemorating more than 10,000 trips made, March 2022. (Internet)

Russia-Ukraine war impacting China-Europe rail transportation and trade

With the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, logistics providers have been hard put to keep goods moving between China and Europe. One route is the China Railway Express (CRE) that cuts through Russia and Ukraine, which gives sellers and suppliers cause for concern, leading to a sharp drop in the volume of goods being transported via that route. Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong takes a look at the impact of the war and how the CRE can get through the challenging period that is coming.
An undated handout photo released on 29 March 2022 by the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) shows China Police Liason Team officers training local RSIPF officers. (Handout/RSIPF/AFP)

Will China-Solomon Islands security cooperation bring new tensions to the South Pacific?

The new policing and security agreements between China and the Solomon Islands have neighbouring countries such as Australia and New Zealand anxious about the potential militarisation of the region. Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong warns that small island nations in the South Pacific must be careful about choosing sides so as not to become pawns in great power competition.
A service member of pro-Russian troops walks near an apartment building destroyed in the course of Russia-Ukraine conflict in the besieged southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine, 28 March 2022. (Alexander Ermochenko/Reuters)

Is China tightening its grip on campus discussions of the Ukraine war?

The ongoing Russia-Ukraine war has generated differing public opinion in China. Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong reports that efforts to put forth a unified position have hit a few bumps in the road as educational institutions seem to be playing catch-up in aligning their public statements with the official stance of the central government.
A man leaves an apartment building damaged after shelling the day before in Ukraine's second biggest city of Kharkiv on 8 March 2022. (Sergey Bobok/AFP)

Claim of US bioweapons operation in Ukraine pushes China closer towards Russia

With the Russian invasion of Ukraine just about two weeks old, a war of words has broken out between the US and China over the alleged presence of US biowarfare research facilities in Ukraine. China seems to be throwing in its lot in with Russia, calling for the US to come clean and to allow multilateral inspections. Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong analyses the recent developments, which is reminiscent of the bickering that ensued when Wuhan lab-leak accusations were heaped on China two years ago.
Medical workers in protective suits administer the Covid-19 vaccine at a makeshift vaccination site in Haidian district, Beijing, China, 8 January 2021. (CNS photo via Reuters)

China's zero-Covid era to end after Chinese New Year?

With the Omicron variant of the coronavirus spreading through China in a fresh wave of infections, is China’s current zero-Covid approach still feasible, given that strict measures did not stamp out the less transmissible Delta variant? To safeguard the economy and global supply chains, will a move towards a post-zero-Covid be inevitable, whether China likes it or not? Zaobao correspondent Edwin Ong reports.