Posted on Friday, March 25, 2011
by Sophia Tsirbas
A weekly compilation of underreported events in Asia
Malaysia has announced plans to join the International Criminal Court. Malaysia will be the third country in ASEAN to ratify the Rome Statute of the ICC, a declaration that renounces war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity.
Saudi Arabian oil company, Saudi Aramco, has signed a MOU with Chinese state-owned firm, Petro China, to supply oil to an oil refinery in China’s Yunnan province. The oil would be transported via a new Chinese pipeline through Myanmar.
Malaysia and North Korea agree to enhance information cooperation in areas such as news and television documentaries. Since their signing of an information agreement in 1992, there has been increased information sharing between both countries’ media agencies.
After a six-year stall due to environmental concerns, India conditionally approved the building of a twelve-billion dollar Korean steel plant . If built, this project will mark the largest foreign investment in India since the beginning of market reforms in 1991.
South Korea’s trade minister announced government interest in the creation of a Korea-China free trade agreement . China is Korea’s largest bilateral trading partner. A signed FTA will make it easier for Korean companies to invest in China.
North and South Korean civilian officials will meet to discuss the possible eruption of North Korean volcano, Mt. Baekdu. The talks are a small sign of cooperation despite heightened military tensions between the two states.
Nepal introduced a four-year emergency plan to combat the country’s frequent energy shortage problems. The government has pledged to spend US $20 billion on the power sector as well as provide tax cuts to companies investing in power plants.
China’s largest nuclear plant operator, China National Nuclear Corp, has started trial production at its first overseas uranium mine in Niger. China is also looking to invest in uranium production in other countries in Africa, Central Asia, Australia, and Russia. According to estimates, China should be self-sufficient in uranium supplies by 2020.
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The Project 2049 Institute seeks to guide decision makers toward a more secure Asia by the century’s mid-point. The Institute is the only Washington-based think tank that focuses exclusively on future-oriented studies of the Asia Pacific.