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Taylor McDonald

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Born and raised in the US, Taylor has a BA in International Relations and specialises in the intricate relationships between ASEAN member states and the United States, calling for cooperation on all fronts to encourage the economic and democratic development of Southeast Asian nations. He is currently working on his thesis on the history of the military junta in Thailand and is a part time writer for ASEAN Economist.

Asean’s plastic shame 

Asean’s beaches, seas and waterways continue to choke on plastic waste, with much of it imported from the developed world. Idyllic spots throughout the biodiverse region are being soiled with plastic junk.  With one of the world’s longest coastlines and the planet’s fourth-highest population, Indonesia is...

Suu Kyi defends Myanmar’s generals in genocide case

Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi has denied that the military acted with “genocidal intent” against the Rohingya in late 2017 in her controversial appearance at the United Nation’s top criminal court in The Hague.  In traditional Burmese dress with flowers in her hair,...

Tesco gets offer for Thai, Malaysian stores

Retail giant Tesco could gain around US$9 billion by selling off its Asean businesses, according to a former supermarket chief. Shares in the supermarket chain rose by more than 5 per cent during trading after Tesco said it was considering offloading more than 2,000...

Indonesia called to release Papua prisoners

At least 110 political prisoners are being held in Indonesian-controlled Papua after numerous arrests for raising the outlawed Papuan national flag, according to Human Rights Watch (HRW).  Police have recently charged 20 people with treason, which carries a 20-year jail sentence. Split into the ethnically Melanesian provinces of Papua...

Myanmar’s generals blame anyone but themselves

Every statement that comes out of Myanmar about the alleged Rohingya genocide in 2017 refers to the threat of the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (Arsa).  The country is being taken to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) by the Gambia over allegations that it committed...

Singapore property chiefs warn of property glut 

Singaporean property developers say an oversupply of apartments and a stagnating economy are set to suppress housing prices.  The president of the Real Estate Developers Association of Singapore, Chia Ngiang Hong, said the Lion City’s home builders feared that oversupply could lead to disappointing returns on major developments. “We...

Vietnam bucks global trends by boosting coal use

Vietnam has been singled out in a global environmental report for seeing the world’s highest increase in coal-generated electricity as other countries are abandoning the filthy fossil fuel.  Electricity produced from coal-fired power stations is set to fall globally by around 3 per cent during 2019, according...

Philippine marine life endangered by China: scholar

China should ban the giant-clam trade to save the coral reefs in the South China Sea from furtherdegradation, according to a US marine biologist.  Kent Carpenter from Old Dominion University in Virginia testified in favour of the Philippines in its territorial disputes with China, saying Beijing’s activity...

Singapore sees rising Chinese property interest

The level of Chinese property investment in Singapore has hit record levels this year as instability in Hong Kong appears to be rising.  “Singapore is the regional safe harbour and the current unsettled political and economic environment makes safety seem worth paying a premium for,” said Georg Chmiel of juwai.com, China’s biggest...

Indonesia abandons pretence of tolerance

Indonesia’s abandonment of liberal tolerance has been further exposed as the government appears keen to pander to the vocal, conservative Muslim community.  Several ministries are refusing to consider job applicants from pregnant, disabled or lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) hopefuls, preferring "normal" applicants.  The sprawling archipelago appears to face...

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Asean’s plastic shame 

Asean’s beaches, seas and waterways continue to choke on plastic waste, with much of it imported from the developed world. Idyllic spots throughout the biodiverse...