Kong Tuan Yuen

Kong Tuan Yuen

Research Fellow, East Asian Institute, National University of Singapore

Dr Kong Tuan Yuen is a research fellow at the East Asian Institute (EAI), National University of Singapore. He received his PhD in industrial economics from the National Central University, Taiwan. Tuan Yuen had taken part in many economic research projects on Taiwan at the Research Centre for Taiwan Economic Development. His current research interests include China’s industrial development and China-ASEAN economic relations. Some of his works had been published in China: An International Journal, Review of Global Politics, Applied Econometrics and International Development and Journal of Overseas Chinese and Southeast Asian Studies. His co-edited books include Studying Hong Kong: 20 Years of Political, Economic and Social Developments (2018) and China and Asia Economic Integration (2020). He is also a frequent contributor to Singapore’s local media.

This handout photo released by the host broadcast, ASEAN Summit 2021, on 27 October 2021 shows Sultan of Brunei Hassanal Bolkiah (centre), Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida (top L), Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (top 2nd L) and South Korean President Moon Jae-in (top 2nd R) taking part in the ASEAN-Plus Three Summit on the sidelines of the 2021 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit, held online on a live video conference in Bandar Seri Begawan. (Handout/ASEAN Summit 2021/AFP)

ASEAN’s deft diplomacy with its dialogue partners

Kong Tuan Yuen notes that this year’s virtual 38th and 39th ASEAN Summits and Related Summits achieved several deliverables, including commitments from dialogue partners such as China, Japan and the US for increased Covid-19 assistance and other cooperation. The grouping also agreed to establish a comprehensive strategic partnership with China and Australia respectively. ASEAN’s desire to maintain its centrality is clear from the way it has timed the two comprehensive strategic partnerships and the stance it adopted on ASEAN member state Myanmar's representation.
US President Joe Biden arrives to speak about American manufacturing and the American workforce after touring the Mack Trucks Lehigh Valley Operations Manufacturing Facility in Macungie, Pennsylvania, US, on 28 July 2021. (Saul Loeb/AFP)

Could China-US trade relations be thawing?

High-level trade and foreign policy officials from the US and China have articulated their views recently on implementing the phase one trade deal and hopes for cooperation amid a state of strategic competition. Will more of such sessions help to chip away at the great wall of mistrust that has been built between the US and China?
A general view of Benzilanzhen, Yunnan province, China, 22 July 2021. (CNS)

Overcoming uneven growth in China's poorer western provinces: Potential and challenges

High-speed rail and other infrastructure development have been proceeding apace under China’s Western Region Development Strategy. However, in trying to catch up with the eastern region, the gap between provinces in the western region may have inadvertently been widened. Without an effective division of labour, wasted resources and unnecessary competition are likely.
A man waters a tree planted on the edge of the Gobi desert on the outskirts of Wuwei, Gansu province, China, 15 April 2021. (Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

Can China revive its poorer western provinces?

China has sought to rectify the imbalance in east-west regional development by improving connectivity and accelerating infrastructure-building in the western provinces through the Western Region Land-Sea Corridor and BRI projects. How successful they will be depends largely on continued capital injections, the region’s greater opening up and good cooperation with China’s neighbouring countries.