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South-east Asia outbreaks bring risk and opportunity

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Significance

In recent months, the region has received jabs manufactured in China, India and Russia -- the key practitioners of ‘vaccine diplomacy’ -- as well as shots made in the West. Meanwhile, some South-east Asian governments have assumed emergency powers to deal with the pandemic.

Impacts

  • Cancellation of forums such as the Shangri-La Dialogue, which was due to take place in June, will set back regional security cooperation.
  • Singapore’s ban on shipping crews that have travelled to India will significantly slow trade transit through the Strait of Malacca.
  • ASEAN will try to spur post-pandemic economic recovery in the region through the ASEAN Economic Community.

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