A weekly download from the CSIS’s Asia experts on policy and trends in the region.
China’s Credit & Credibility
October 12, 2018
In this episode, we discuss the current state of China’s financial system. China’s credit sector has expanded dramatically over the course of China’s unparalleled economic rise, yet now faces key problems that may impact overall economic stability. The authors of a new report from CSIS and the Rhodium Group, Logan Wright and Daniel Rosen, join the podcast to talk about their fresh analysis of China’s financial situation and explain the methodology behind their research. They also touch on the challenges to Beijing in moving forward with financial reforms while attempting to maintain stability in China’s credit system and explain what this potential area of weakness in China’s economy means for U.S. policy.
In this episode, we discuss conflict resolution and development in the northeast Indian state of Nagaland. The long-running insurgency in Nagaland looks to be drawing to a close following conclusion of a framework for a peace agreement in 2015 between the government of India and the Naga rebels, but a final peace deal is still pending. For Nagaland's state government, the challenge for the future is solidifying good governance that will translate to development.
Joining the pod to provide an update on the peace process, state politics, and efforts to increase infrastructure and investment in Nagaland is Mr. Abu Metha. Mr. Metha is a journalist and political organizer who serves as the General Secretary of the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party in Nagaland. He recently sat down with CSIS Wadhwani Chair Research Associate Aman Thakker to share his insights on the current status of Nagaland.
Audio edited by Ribka Gemilangsari. Written by Jeffrey Bean and Aman Thakker. Produced by Jeffrey Bean.
Unpacking Congress’s Role in Asia Policy & the 2019 NDAA
September 5, 2018
In this episode, we review the Asia-related sections of the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, and explore Congress’s role in framing U.S. policy toward Asia. Returning to the podcast to unpack these topics are Dr. Michael Green, Japan Chair and Senior Vice President for Asia at CSIS, and Gregory Poling, director of the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative and fellow with Southeast Asia Program at CSIS.
Mike and Greg share personal anecdotes about recently deceased Senator John McCain’s contributions on Asia policy and analyze the Asia elements of 2019 NDAA – including: language intended to restrain the Trump administration from rapid policy swings on South Korea and Taiwan, the requirement for the administration to provide a whole of government strategy for competition with China, and the funds allocated for boosting capacity of partner claimants in the South China Sea. They also discuss the bipartisan nature of congressional input to Asia policy, the value of congressional requirements for the Pentagon, and review crucial historical decisions made by Congress on Asia strategy. Hosted by Liza Keller. Audio edited by Ribka Gemilangsari. Written and produced by Jeffrey Bean.
In this episode, we assess China’s engagement with multilateral institutions and global governance. Joining the show to track China’s transition from institutional outsider to cautious observer to international insider in global governance are Dr. Scott Kennedy, Deputy Director of the CSIS Freeman Chair in China Studies, and Dr. Stewart Patrick, James H. Binger Senior Fellow in Global Governance at the Council on Foreign Relations. Scott and Stewart also assess the health of the international order and sovereignty, examine China’s efforts to participate in and shape global governance, and evaluate where the United States stands in a period of declining internationalism.
Hosted by Liza Keller. Audio edited by Ribka Gemilangsari. Written and produced by Jeffrey Bean.
In this episode, we tackle Japan’s relationships with the European Union and Russia in tandem. How will BREXIT affect EU-Japan and Japan-UK relations? What does the new EU-Japan FTA deal mean for the Japanese economy? Will Japan ever regain control of the Northern Territories in the Kuril Islands? Why has Shinzo Abe sought to improve Japan’s relations with Vladimir Putin and Russia? How does Japan’s stance on these issues impact the United States and the international order? CSIS 2018 Strategic Japan Fellows and Keio University Professors Dr. Michito Tsuruoka and Dr. Yoko Hirose join the pod with CSIS Senior Vice President for Europe, Eurasia, and the Arctic Heather Conley to answer these questions and more.
Hosted by Liza Keller. Audio edited by Ribka Gemilangsari. Written and produced by Jeffrey Bean.
Read Dr. Tsuruoka’s summary essay on Japan-EU relations here and full 2018 Strategic Japan paper here.
Read Dr. Hirose’s summary essay on Japan’s diplomacy with Russia over the Northern Territories here and full 2018 Strategic Japan paper here.
Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation in the Innovation Age
May 24, 2018
In this episode, we discuss the future of defense innovation in the U.S.-Japan alliance with the specter of a rising China on the horizon. CSIS 2018 Strategic Japan Fellow Dr. Satoru Mori, a professor at Hosei University in Japan, joins AEI Research Fellow Dr. Zack Cooper to discuss how the United States and Japan need to invest, innovate, and cooperate to maintain military overmatch against China. They also analyze Tokyo’s own efforts to invest in information technology and cybersecurity while striving to achieve synergy with U.S. defense capabilities. Hosted by Liza Keller. Audio edited by Ribka Gemilangsari. Written and produced by Jeffrey Bean.
Read Dr. Mori’s summary essay here and full 2018 Strategic Japan paper here.
Southeast Asia’s Slide toward Authoritarianism
May 3, 2018
In this episode, we assess the decline of democratic governance, human rights, and rule of law in several Southeast Asian countries ahead of key elections in 2018 and 2019. CSIS Southeast Asia Program Deputy Director Brian Harding joins the pod to analyze the machinations surrounding elections in Malaysia on May 9 and provide a sitrep on the state of possible elections and space for civil society in Thailand and Cambodia, as well as current trends in Vietnam and the Philippines. Brian also shares insight on what Indonesia and Singapore are doing right as bright spots for democracy in the region and argues that the United States should continue to engage and assist the region on governance, rule of law, and human rights.
Hosted by Elizabeth Keller. Audio edited by Ribka Gemilangsari. Written and produced by Jeffrey Bean.
The YouTube performance of the latest pop song that Prime Minister Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha of Thailand wrote (in Thai) is here.
Context for the Korean Summit(s)
April 24, 2018
In this episode, we provide context for the inter-Korean summit and analyze the prospects of a Trump-Kim summit. CSIS Korea Chair experts Dr. Sue Mi Terry and Lisa Collins join to chart the whirlwind developments on the peninsula since early February, describe the geopolitical dynamics surrounding each summit for North Korea, South Korea, and the United States, and assess the possible outcomes, including whether denuclearization is achievable.Hosted by Elizabeth Keller. Audio edited by Ribka Gemilangsari. Written and produced by Jeffrey Bean.
In this episode, we analyze the origin and impact of a Sino-American trade war. As the trading relationship between Washington and Beijing spirals into conflict and protectionism, we are joined by two CSIS experts, Matthew Goodman, Simon Chair in Political Economy, and William Reinsch, Scholl Chair in International Business, to discuss what a trade war actually is, the impact of President Trump’s Section 232 tariffs, the types of tools China and the U.S. can use in this fight, and potential constraints on escalation. Matt and Bill also explain where this leaves the multilateral institutions that govern trade and project the likelihood of miscalculation on either side.
Then Dr. Scott Kennedy, director of the Project on Chinese Business and Political Economy at the CSIS Freeman Chair in China Studies, bats cleanup to assess Section 301 penalties that President Trump has imposed, countermeasures from the Chinese leadership, and whether the U.S. and China are truly ready for a full-on trade conflict. Hosted by Will Colson. Audio edited by Ribka Gemilangsari. Written and produced by Jeffrey Bean.
To learn more, please see analysis from our experts:
A Better Way to Challenge China on Trade | Foreign Affairs by Matthew Goodman & Ely Ratner here.
Section 301, Tariffs, and Chinese Trade and Investment | CSIS by Stephanie Segal & William Reinsch here.
Surviving March Madness in U.S.-China Trade Relations | CSIS by Scott Kennedy here.
Is the U.S. Ready for a Trade War? | Yale Global by Scott Kennedy here.
The Shifting Politics of Trade | CSIS by William Reinsch here.
Finding the Right Off-ramp from the Trade War | CSIS by Claire Reade here.
To read the details of President Trump’s announcements on U.S. trade policy see Section 232 here, Section 301 here.
Talking China, Tech, & Ethics with Kaiser Kuo
March 5, 2018
In this podcast, we talk with Kaiser Kuo, longtime China technology watcher and practitioner, and co-host of the Sinica podcast. In an environment where Xi Jinping is president for life, understanding China’s approach to emerging technology, innovation, and the Chinese Communist Party’s censorship of new media is fundamental for tracking geopolitics in East Asia. As the former director for international communications for Baidu, a Chinese search engine giant, Kaiser is uniquely positioned to assess trends in China’s innovation ecosystem, Chinese discussions about the ethics of emerging technologies, and the differences between the tech space in the United States and China.
Hosted by Will Colson. Audio edited by Ribka Gemalingsari. Written and Produced by Jeffrey Bean.
Learn more about China on the Sinica podcast via SupChina here.