October 16, 2021
General News

Shifting geopolitics plays out in region, ST Editorial News & Top Stories

Two thunderclaps sounded over the Indo-Pacific last week, geopolitics neatly mimicking the spell of unsettling weather that has been witnessed by the region lately. Washington, London and Canberra announced a new security arrangement around Australia, to equip it with stealthy nuclear-powered submarines and long-range missiles to shore up its security vis-a-vis China. The second development had been better anticipated: China announced that it was formally applying to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), the pact that emerged in 2018 from the potentially game-changing but stillborn TPP.

The first event crystallised a response to anxieties about China’s growing power, including its military modernisation plans, assertiveness over claims in the South and East China seas and its alleged political interference campaigns. The second…

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