Pakistan’s hybrid ‘civilian–military’ government weakens democracy

Author: Ayesha Siddiqa, SOAS Pakistan enters 2020 slouched under the burden of a weak democracy with a strong military, a tense neighbourhood and a geopolitical environment under pressure from US–China great power rivalry. With political instability and a plummeting economy weakening, the civilian government’s dependence on the military has grown. Pakistan also faces deteriorating relations […]

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Dealing in the brave new post-Trump trade world

Author: Editorial Board, ANU International trade negotiations have never been entirely pretty, even after the step-by-step entrenchment of multilateral trade rules informed by the powerful principle of most favoured nation treatment for all who signed onto the GATT and WTO. The most favoured nation principle means quite simply that countries in the system, however big […]

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US-China trade rapprochement round one

Author: Yao Yang, Peking University The conclusion of phase one of the trade negotiations between the United States and China has been  welcomed by global markets because it has brushed off many uncertainties caused by the tense relationship between the world’s two largest economies over the past two years. According to the now publicised text, […]

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US–China trade deal disappoints

Author: Jeffrey J Schott, PIIE Champagne corks popped on 15 January as US and Chinese officials signed phase one of their bilateral trade deal. But the celebration seems premature — the deal is flawed and likely to disappoint. Despite the pact, the trade war continues substantially unimpeded. While the phase one deal avoids an escalation […]

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New Zealand–India trade an unfinished story

Authors: Rahul Sen, Auckland University of Technology and Mukul Asher, Singapore New Zealand’s trade dependency and long history of actively pursuing both bilateral and multilateral preferential trade agreements (PTAs) makes it one of the strongest free trade proponents. Among the world’s largest agreements, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement — capturing ASEAN, China, Japan, […]

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Bangladesh’s authoritarian shift

Author: Ali Riaz, Illinois State University In Bangladesh the ruling Awami League has established total control over state machinery and politics since the managed election of December 2018. Simmering popular discontent found expression in agitations against the killing of a student, price hikes and government-appointed university administration corruption in 2019. The 2018 election, described by […]

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Prospects for Myanmar’s development and governance

Author: Soe Nandar Linn, Yangon Myanmar’s efforts to reverse a legacy of isolation began with the quasi-civilian government led by then-president U Thein Sein. From 2011–2015, his government undertook a series of political, economic and social reforms that built the foundation for future democratic development. Key reform initiatives under his administration included renewed engagement with […]

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