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Would southeast Asian nations choose the U.S. over China?

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A recent survey suggests that more than half of the people in Southeast Asia would favor China over the United States if compelled to make a choice.

  • Growing Preference for China: A survey by the ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute indicates that over half of Southeast Asians would choose China over the United States, signaling a significant shift in regional preferences.

  • Distrust of Beijing: Despite acknowledging China’s economic influence, respondents expressed widespread distrust of Beijing, particularly concerning its potential for economic coercion and military aggression.

  • Economic Concerns Prevail: While geopolitical tensions between the US and China persist, the primary concerns for Southeast Asians revolve around economic issues such as unemployment, recession, and climate change, highlighting the region’s focus on economic stability and development.

The State of Southeast Asia 2024 survey, released this week, reveals a significant shift in preferences.

Approximately 50.5 percent of respondents expressed a preference for China, marking an increase of over 11 percentage points compared to the previous year.

This marks the first time that China has been favored over the US in the survey’s history.

China was also identified as the most influential economic power in the region by a majority of respondents, with 59.9 percent choosing it over the US.

Despite recognising China’s economic clout, the survey also highlighted widespread distrust of Beijing, with 67.5 percent of respondents expressing concerns about its growing economic influence.

ASEAN, China adopt framework for crafting code on South China Sea …

Major countries

This sentiment was particularly pronounced in countries such as Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand, and the Philippines.

Concerns about potential coercion by China, both economically and militarily, were shared by just over half of the respondents, while 45.5 percent expressed a lack of trust in China.

Bonnie Glaser, managing director of the Indo-Pacific programme at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, characterised the survey results as reflective of the complex relationship between Southeast Asian nations and China.

Glaser said that while countries in the region acknowledge China’s growing influence, they also harbor concerns about potential economic coercion and threats to sovereignty.

Ian Chong, a non-resident scholar at Carnegie China, cautioned that the survey results should be interpreted as a snapshot of sentiments during January and February of 2024.

Chong suggested that the shift towards China may be influenced by anti-US sentiment related to geopolitical events, such as the conflict between Israel and Hamas.

Despite geopolitical tensions between the US and China, the economy emerged as the primary concern for respondents. Unemployment and the prospect of recession were cited as the top concerns, followed by climate change and intensifying economic tensions between major powers.

The survey also identified Israel’s war in Gaza as the most pressing geopolitical concern in the region, with significant attention from countries like Malaysia, Brunei, and Indonesia.

Concerns were raised about the potential for the conflict to fuel religious extremism and undermine international law and order.

Ahron Young is an award winning journalist who has covered major news events around the world. Ahron is the Managing Editor and Founder of TICKER NEWS.

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News

China conducts ‘punishment’ war games near Taiwan

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China initiated military ‘punishment’ exercises in the waters surrounding Taiwan in response to the newly inaugurated President Lai Ching-te.

These drills come amid escalating tensions in the region, with Beijing asserting its sovereignty over Taiwan, denouncing the inauguration of President Lai Ching-te and labelling this one of several “separatist acts”, as reported by Reuters.

These military manoeuvres are seen as a show of force and a warning to Taiwan and its supporters against any moves perceived as challenging China’s territorial claims.

President Lai has repeatedly offered talks with China but has been rebuffed.

He says only Taiwan’s people can decide their future, and rejects Beijing’s sovereignty claims.

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Money

Apple Music’s controversial top 10 albums of all time

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Apple Music has released its highly anticipated “100 Best Albums of All Time” list, with the top 10 rankings causing a bittersweet symphony of destruction for some music lovers.

The list was curated by a panel of experts and based on various factors including cultural impact, critical acclaim, and commercial success, with the aim to celebrate the most influential and timeless albums across genres.

As reported by the official Apple Music Newsroom blog post, the top ten best albums of all time are the following:

10. Lemonade (2016), Beyoncé

9. Nevermind (1991), Nirvana 

8. Back to Black (2006), Amy Winehouse

7. good kid, m.A.A.d city (2012), Kendrick Lamar

6. Songs in the Key of Life (1976), Stevie Wonder

5. Blonde (2016), Frank Ocean

4. Purple Rain (1984), Prince & The Revolution

3. Abbey Road (1969), The Beatles

2. Thriller (1982), Michael Jackson

1. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (1998), Lauryn Hill

In other news, Apple recently became the first company to hit a $3 trillion stock market value, before falling just below that milestone, as reported by Reuters.

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Leaders

Essential daily protein needs for better health

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Protein is a fundamental macronutrient essential for various bodily functions, including muscle repair, enzyme production, and immune system support.

Daily protein requirements can vary significantly based on factors such as activity levels, age, and gender.

To help unpack this topic, Kate Save from BeFitFood joins to share her key insights. #featured

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