Supporters of Kuomintang's presidential candidate Han Kuo-yu react to his speech during an election rally in Taichung, Taiwan on December 29, 2019. (Ann Wang/Reuters)

Why the 2020 Taiwan presidential election is a battle of the generations

With less than two weeks before Taiwanese head to the polls on 11 January 2020 to elect their next President, generational divides have become more apparent: while the younger generation tend to support Tsai Ing-wen and her progressive reforms on issues such as LGBT rights, the older generation look to Han Kuo-yu for a sense of stability and keeping things as they used to be. Ng Soon Kiat looks at what each generation says about the other, and what the green and blue camps are doing to woo young voters.
Russia and China are getting closer in terms of military ties. (Reuters)

Closer military ties in China-Russia power play

Project Assistant Professor Yu Koizumi of The University of Tokyo observes that as long as their respective relations with the US remain at an impasse, China and Russia’s growing military ties portend greater collaboration between the two powers in the Eurasia great game.
Taiwan is benefiting from the China-US trade war, and the US is supportive of Taiwan. (Athit Perawongmetha/REUTERS)

The biggest winner in the China-US trade war? Taiwan.

Various stakeholders stand to gain from a protracted US-China trade war. So far, one of the biggest — if not the biggest — beneficiaries of the spillover effect is Taiwan. Professor Zhu Ying looks at the financial and political benefits Taiwan is reaping.
China and the US have reached a "phase one" trade deal. Will it be enough to end the trade war? (Kevin Lamarque/REUTERS)

Low-hanging fruit: The “phase one” trade deal

By all accounts, the “phase one” deal concluded between the US and China is a small one. Will this token gesture be enough to change US-China relations drastically in 2020? Prof Sahashi Ryo gives his take from Japan.
Li Rongrong, former Chairman of the State-Owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission. (Internet)

An exemplary leader: A tribute to the late Li Rongrong, former chairman of the State-Owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission

Lim Hwee Hua pays tribute to Li Rongrong, former Chairman of the State-Owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission, whom she's known since 2003. She speaks fondly about the courage of Li's convictions and the invaluable contributions he has made in his lifetime.
Fireworks at Tiananmen Square during the evening gala of the PRC's 70th anniversary celebrations (Jason Lee/Reuters)

China’s quest for “great nation” status: A view from Japan

Through shows of military, economic and soft power, China seeks to position itself as a great nation. Japanese academic Tomoki Kamo explains why from the view of neighbours such as Japan, China’s actions to achieve its aims are moves to be wary of.
The Chinese system has governance capacity to tackle the emerging “troubled times”. This picture shows children waiting to bid farewell to China's President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan at the international airport in Macau on 20 December, 2019.  (Photo by Eduardo Leal/AFP)

China's governance model: The way forward for today's world?

Lance Gore from the East Asian Institute says that the shape and form of widespread protests around the world show how states are fast losing their authority to govern. Systems in liberal democracies give protesters the space to air their views, but not necessarily the solutions they are looking for. In this regard, China’s brand of authoritarianism coupled with good governance may surprisingly be the tack to take.
Tension between China and the US is intensifying. This file photo taken on May 14, 2019 shows the US (L) and Chinese flags (R) displayed outside a hotel in Beijing. (Greg Baker/AFP)

Will the US start a Third Opium War?

Deng Qingbo sees great similarities between the trade-deficit-induced Opium Wars and the current China-US trade war, right down to a literal opioid — fentanyl, often discussed in the trade talks — and a figurative one, the irresistible drug that politicians and others have made out of demonising China as they ride a wave of populist sentiment. Amidst the current smoke and mirrors, he does not rule out the possibility that tensions between China and the US could tip over into war.
Hong Kong youth protesters think they can count on external support. But can they really? (Sam Yeh/AFP)

How much help should Taiwan offer Hong Kong protesters?

Young Hong Kong protesters seem to take for granted that they have the support of other countries and regions. How accurate is that perception? Veteran China affairs journalist Han Yong Hong analyses the recent war of words over the prospect of Taiwan enacting a law to help Hong Kong asylum seekers, and dishes out a dose of realism in her assessment.