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Asian Insider: MNCs say goodbye HK, hello S’pore | Risk of terror attacks in Indonesia

Dear ST reader, 

One month after a Hamas incursion sparked a deadly military response by Israel, repercussions of the war continue to be felt beyond the Middle East. Jonathan Eyal analyses how a broader regional conflict would spook energy markets and affect the world economy.  

In Indonesia, Hariz Baharudin looks at how heightened tensions arising from the Israel-Hamas war and the upcoming contentious presidential election have created a volatile environment that could inflame emotions. This increases the risk of terror attacks.

Goodbye Hong Kong, hello Singapore: While the Chinese-ruled city has gone all out to woo back investors and professionals after the pandemic, Magdalene Fung reports on how many big MNCs have already relocated their operations elsewhere.

Australian PM Anthony Albanese went viral on Chinese social media after he was seen wearing shorts and a green-and-gold Australian women’s soccer team jersey as he took a morning walk in Shanghai. Jonathan Pearlman looks at how the first visit of an Australian premier to China since 2016 heralds a return to normalcy in bilateral ties. 

How many hours are you working this week? In India, a debate is raging over what constitutes a productive work culture, after a senior tech executive said young people need to work at least 70 hours a week to make the country an economic powerhouse. Nirmala Ganapathy reports.

Risk of terror attacks in Indonesia

Fifty-nine people who are suspected of plotting attacks to disrupt next year’s polls have been arrested. Experts say they are unlikely to be the last batch.

More on this:

How Israel-Hamas war unfolds has geopolitical impact on South-east Asia: NTU prof

MNCs exit Hong Kong

Many of these global firms are opting for Singapore, even as they welcome Hong Kong’s latest raft of business-friendly measures.

More on Hong Kong’s economy:

Faced with Hong Kong’s ‘trolley problem’, John Lee chooses to save the economy

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Does South Korea need a nuclear arsenal?

Amid threats of a nuclear war from a Russia-assisted North, analysts are arguing that Seoul should reassess its nuclear deterrence options.

More on this:

Blinken concerned by growing Russia-North Korea military ties

North Korea fires suspected ICBM ahead of South Korea, Japan meeting

The women who farm ‘sea gold’

India is making a bold bet on seaweed cultivation to modernise and anchor a largely unorganised sector at a time when global yields have been hurt by the warming seas.

More on the seaweed farming industry:

From soup stock to supercrop: Japan shows off its seaweed savvy

Tokyo, Manila fortify military alliance

From joint drills to a coastal radar system, Japan and the Philippines are seeking to resist a more assertive China in the East and South China Seas.

More on the disputed South China Sea:

Japan cooperating with Philippines, US to protect South China Sea, says PM Kishida

Philippines accuses China of intruding into its waters

Bhutan walks geopolitical tightrope

The tiny Himalayan nation operates under India’s zone of influence in South Asia. It is also on track to establish diplomatic ties with China.

More on this:

Bhutan struggles to defend territory in India-China border spat

Sexual predators in Japan’s entertainment industry

The allegations surrounding Johnny’s, a top talent management agency, is among the most prominent examples of sexual harassment in Japan’s entertainment circles. But it may just be the tip of the iceberg.

More on the fallout:

Japanese advertisers drop J-pop agency Johnny & Associates over sex abuse scandal

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