More than two decades after the ASEAN power grid became a regional commitment, it is far from being a network for transboundary trade in electricity. But this year, Singapore will finally receive electricity from Laos’ hydroelectric power.
Resignation, frustration mix as Southeast Asians find that their countries are back in lockdowns. But vaccination is underway, covering larger proportions of people in Singapore and Indonesia, than in the Philippines and Thailand.
COVID-19 may have forced Singapore and Malaysia to address the appalling living conditions of migrant workers they host. But larger and wider problems such as the lack of social protection, as well as discrimination that has become worse during the pandemic, persist.
สถานการณ์โควิด-19 ทำให้สิงคโปร์และมาเลเซียจำต้องหันมาดูแลสภาพความเป็นอยู่ที่น่าอนาถของแรงงานข้ามชาติในประเทศ แต่ปัญหาที่ใหญ่และหนักกว่านั้นก็ยังคงอยู่ เช่นไม่มีการปกป้องทางสังคม และมีการกีดกันเพิ่มขึ้นในช่วงโรคระบาดนี้
Misinformation and disinformation around COVID-19 continue to thrive, but Malaysians also have more trust in traditional media compared in recent years.
A permanent state of uncertainty is how life is for asylum seekers and urban refugees in Bangkok and other Southeast Asian cities. Often invisible in the cities they live in, they cannot work legally and do not have papers to stay for long periods of time, even if the process of seeking asylum takes years, reports Johanna Son*.
ASEAN Lanes – special lanes at airports in Southeast Asia for travellers from the organisation’s 10 member countries – remain more a concept than a reality in the region. To date, Malaysia is the only country to properly implement the service. Kavi Chongkittavorn looks at why the other countries have yet to do so in this Reporting ASEAN analysis.
Amid the heated debates and discussions around this year’s haze episode in Southeast Asia, ASEAN’s agreement on transboundary haze pollution has gotten little attention – or mention. It lies all but buried in the embers of frustration of Indonesia’s neighbouring countries, reports Kanis Dursin* from Jakarta.
In this Sep.26 open letter, human rights activists argue that “serious flaws” in the draft ASEAN Human Rights Declaration, set to be adopted by ASEAN later in the year, must be addressed. If not, they say, the declaration would “not bode well for the reputation and credibility” of the ASEAN human rights mechanism.
Photo: Joel Chong