Asian Currents


Beyond ‘four dishes and one soup’: China’s hidden economic epidemic

BY and

By Jonathan Benney and Vincent Zhang Rising concerns about the blow-out in government expenses in China echo the causes behind the collapse of the North Song Dynasty more than 1000 years ago. Western businesspeople are used to claiming expenses: while it is not universal, the costs of travel and daily necessities for work are often […]


Taiwan signals its readiness to join the world’s democratic powers


With a new president and a populace gaining confidence in its national identity, Taiwan hopes China will finally recognise its sovereignty. Consolidated democracies in Asia are rare. India and Japan democratised after World War II, and Taiwan and South Korea did so from the late 1980s. Countries such as Indonesia, the Philippines and Mongolia have […]

Australia - Asia relations

Even closer economic engagement in Asia: compelling and overwhelming reasons why


Australia’s economic future rests squarely in its region—Asia—though shadow treasurer CHRIS BOWEN political leaders here need to do more ‘walk the walk’ than simply ‘talk the talk’. It’s a truism these days that Australia’s economic future lies primarily in Asia. The case for closer economic engagement in Asia is compelling and overwhelming. Take your pick […]