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Cambodia orphanage boss jailed for child abuse

Cambodian children have long been vulnerable to sexual abuse. Source: Wikimedia A Cambodian court has jailed an orphanage director, a campaigner against child abuse, for just three years for committing “indecent acts” against children in his care. Hang Vibol, 46, director of Our Home orphanage in...

Suu Kyi said to be angling for presidency

Suu Kyi appears to be in negotiations to take the presidency. Source: Wikimedia Myanmar will not find out who its next president will be until at least mid-March, it was announced as speculation swirled over who will serve as proxy for Aung San Suu Kyi. All...

Philippine internet among world’s worst: study

The Philippines’ many mountainous islands are not easily brought online. Source: Wikimedia Philippine mobile internet speeds are some of the worst in the world in terms of 4G LTE (fourth generation long-term evolution) speed and accessibility, a study claims. UK-based OpenSignal, which analyses crowd-sourced data from...

Jakarta trumpets surprise growth figures

Jakarta’s economy and politics are looking more stable. Source: Wikimedia Indonesia’s economy grew faster than expected at the end of last year as President Joko Widodo’s moves to boost public spending began to have an effect on Asean’s largest economy. GDP growth reached 5.04 per cent in...

Elderly card players busted in bizarre Pattaya raid

A bridge club is an unlikely focus for the Pattaya authorities. Source: Wikimedia Around 32 foreign bridge players have been detained on Thailand’s gulf coast during a gambling crackdown. More than 50 Thai police officers and army volunteers reportedly raided the expat gathering in a rented...

Najib rival unseated

Zahir Masjid, Kedah's state mosque. The northerly state needs a new chief minister. Source: Flickr Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak tightened his grip on power after the son of his predecessor was removed for what he claimed was criticism of the premier’s involvement in financial...

Shell sells Malaysian arm to Chinese firm

A Shell petrol station in Sabah, Malaysia. Source: Wikimedia Royal Dutch Shell said it had agreed to sell its shares in Shell Refining Company in Malaysia to a private Chinese refiner for US$66.3 million. It is the first overseas refinery acquisition by a private Chinese refiner,...

Asean lacks economic freedom: US think tank

An MRT-3 train in Manila. The Philippines’ infrastructure is holding it back. Source: Wikimedia Out of a study ranking freedom in 178 economies, the Philippines comes 70th, according to the Index of Economic Freedom by the Heritage Foundation. The Washington-based think tank analyses developments in economic...

Singapore unveils marshland

Kranji Marshes along the northwestern shore of Kranji Reservoir. Source: channelnewsasia The Kranji Marshes, which at 57-hectares is the largest freshwater marshland in Singapore, was officially opened this week with guided tours starting at the end of the month. Next to Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, the marshland...

NLD MPs face daunting challenge

Female labourers paint parliamentary block paving in Nay Pyi Taw ahead of the start of the new session. Photo: Asean Economist   Hundreds of new MPs from Aung San Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy will be sworn into parliament tomorrow (Monday) to choose the first...

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