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The Economist Asia EditionThe Economist Asia Edition

The Economist Asia Edition

June 15, 2019

The Economist is the premier source for the analysis of world business and current affairs, providing authoritative insight and opinion on international news, world politics, business, finance, science and technology, as well as overviews of cultural trends and regular Special reports on industries and countries.

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
The Economist Newspaper Limited - Asia Pacific
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51 Issues

IN THIS ISSUE

access_time8 min.
the world this week

Politics Police in Hong Kong used rubber bullets, tear gas and water hoses on crowds demonstrating against a proposed law that would allow people to be extradited to the Chinese mainland. Three days earlier, perhaps 1m marchers thronged the streets, worried that the law would make anyone in Hong Kong, citizens and visiting businessfolk alike, vulnerable to prosecution in Chinese courts, which are under the thumb of the Communist Party. For the third time, a court in New Zealand prevented the government from extraditing a murder suspect to China. It asked the government to consider whether China could be relied upon to adhere to the human-rights treaties it has signed and whether a trial would be free from political interference. Tsai Ing-wen, the president of Taiwan, survived a primary challenge from Lai Ching-te,…

access_time5 min.
hong kong

THREE THINGS stand out about the protesters who rocked Hong Kong this week. There were a great many of them. Hundreds of thousands took to the streets in what may have been the biggest demonstration since Hong Kong was handed back to China in 1997. Most of them were young—too young to be nostalgic about British rule. Their unhappiness at Beijing’s heavy hand was entirely their own. And they showed remarkable courage. Since the “Umbrella Movement” of 2014, the Communist Party has been making clear that it will tolerate no more insubordination—and yet three days later demonstrators braved rubber bullets, tear gas and legal retribution to make their point. All these things are evidence that, as many Hong Kongers see it, nothing less than the future of their city is…

access_time3 min.
presidential credentials

ONE OF THE biggest jobs in Europe is up for grabs: head of the European Central Bank (ECB). It sets interest rates across much of the continent, supervises banks and underwrites the euro, used by 19 countries with 341m citizens. The ECB’s outgoing boss, Mario Draghi, who steps down in October after eight years in charge, has done a sterling job in difficult circumstances. His tenure illustrates what is at stake. After a sovereign-debt crisis in 2010-12 threatened to sink the euro, it was Mr Draghi who ended the financial panic by pledging that the ECB would do “whatever it takes” to stop the euro zone from breaking up. Although he saved the euro, Mr Draghi leaves behind problems. The economy is faltering; a recession at some point in the next…

access_time4 min.
a conservative clown show

BRITAIN’S CONSERVATIVES like to think they are the party of economic competence. Although they have overseen some debacles in recent decades, they have typically had a clear vision for the British economy. In the 1980s, under Margaret Thatcher, they deregulated markets, privatised state-run industries and encouraged home ownership. In the 2010s their defining idea has been fiscal rectitude. By cutting spending and slightly raising taxes they have contained the rise of Britain’s public debt. Competence has turned to chaos. This week Tory MPs nominated ten candidates to replace Theresa May as leader of the party, and thus as prime minister (see Britain section). In a triumph of chest-thumping over economic reason, most say they are prepared to see the country crash out of the European Union without a deal. And, between…

access_time4 min.
stop the war before it starts

THE BURST of optimism in Sudan did not last long. In April, after months of mass protests, a tyrant was deposed. President Omar al-Bashir, who had ruled for 30 years, was ousted in a bloodless coup. No one was sorry to see him go. Mr Bashir had unleashed genocide in the western region of Darfur, his violent oppression drove the southern third of his vast country to secede, and he presided over a regime of exceptional cruelty and avarice. Alas, the joyful crowds who gathered in Khartoum to serenade his departure and paint their faces the colours of the Sudanese flag have been tragically let down. The Transitional Military Council, a junta that took over, has no intention of holding free or fair elections, as the crowds demand. To underline this…

access_time3 min.
a balkan betrayal

ENLARGING THE European Union long ago fell out of fashion. No country has joined since Croatia became the 28th member, in 2013. As the leaders of Hungary and Poland attack the independence of their judiciaries it seems quaint to argue, as many once did, that negotiating membership would instil democratic habits in countries with long memories of dictatorship. How much harder to make the case in the Balkans: Kosovo and Serbia are at daggers drawn, and Bosnia is an ungovernable mess. But a happier story is unfolding in the country known, since February, as North Macedonia. After years of authoritarian misrule the new government, led by Zoran Zaev, has started tackling corruption and reforming the judiciary. In an unhappy region, the country’s Slavic majority and Albanian minority enjoy good relations. And…

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