Under the Radar News, 11.25.09

Posted on Wednesday, November 25, 2009 by Kolby Hanson

A weekly compilation of underreported developments in Asia.

China admits Sichuan quake funds used improperly (People’s Daily) Chinese government thinktank CAST admits that Sichuan earthquake relief funds were distributed unfairly, largely benefitting wealthy people. The Sichuan quake has already been a topic of speculation on corruption and China’s rich-poor gap.

Japanese commission calls for foreign aid cuts (Yomiuri Shimbun) Pressed by budget woes and rising costs from DPJ campaign promises, Japan’s Government Revitalization Unit recommended a major reduction in foreign aid, one third of education- and health-targeted aid.

Controversy over 1960 Japan-US nuclear agreement (Yomiuri Shimbun) With the Japanese public already uncertain about the US alliance and US military presence in Japanese territory, secret documents reportedly reveal that a 1960 amendment to the Japan-US alliance has allowed American military to land in Japan with nuclear weapons.

Indonesian government lost on meeting President’s emission cut pledge (Jakarta Post) Newly-elected Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono pledged to cut Indonesia’s carbon emissions by 26 percent by 2020 in October, but government officials are struggling to find strategies to do so.

Australia purchases 14 Joint Strike Fighters from US (Bloomberg) The Australian government has approved a nearly $3 billion deal for 14 American-made F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, the most advanced commercially available fighters. They will be delivered in 2014.

Japan grants nearly $500 million in aid to the Philippines (Manila Times) Just as they were announcing huge overall cuts, the Japanese government announced a deal to supply $489 million in loans to the Philippines to supply agriculture and infrastructure projects.

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