Asian Highway: Modern Silk Road Promises Economic Benefits
Another piece of the ambitious 87,546 mile Asian Highway (AH) network slotted into place last month as Vietnam completed its section. The milestone was announced by Do Ngoc Dung, vice director of the Vietnam government’s My Thuan Project Management Unit. The Asian Highway now links Vietnam, Laos, Thailand and Myanmar. The $144.77 million construction bill was partly financed by the Asian Development Bank. When completed, the $44 billion AH network will weave through 32 countries, connect Asia with Europe, and boost regional economies by facilitating trade and tourism. It also fuels dreams of a Pan-Asian community with a common social-political-economic [...]
Japan’s likely new Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, will seek to amend the Japanese constitution to allow the country to use its military for non-defensive purposes. Combined with the material capabilities of the Japanese military and the perception that Japan glorifies World War II, the likelihood that Japan will be viewed as a regional threat is growing. Both domestic and international factors are pushing Japan to amend the Constitution. Domestically, as in Germany, there is a growing belief in Japan that World War II is long past, and the country should no longer act like a chastened nation. Regionally, Japan is [...]
Although both China and Africa were home to two of the world’s oldest civilizations, each dating back more than 6,000 years, China has only recently discovered the true value of Africa. China’s initial forays on the continent, during the 1960s and 1970s, were driven by political ideology and thus inherently limited in scope and duration. Today, the basis of the Sino-African relationship has evolved from politics to economics. “China explicitly stated that they were going to shift their focus away from ideology in 1996,” says Christopher Alden, senior lecturer in international relations at the London School of Economics. A major [...]
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