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Asia in 2021: In the grip of global and local crises

Anno di pubblicazione: 2022

China 2021: Coping with the resilience dilemma of the Chinese model

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf In 2021 Chinese internal politics were dominated by the domestic economy and the COVID-19 pandemic. The celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) worked well to project the numerous successes of Chinese politics through history. Yet, Beijing’s insistence on the need to rethink the […]

Japan 2021: The Liberal Democratic Party emerges stronger despite domestic tumult

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf   The COVID-19 pandemic continued to impact the Japanese economy as well as the political fortunes of Japan’s leader in 2021. For the second year in a row, Japan’s Prime Minister was forced to stand down, portending a return to the revolving door of one-year prime ministerships that […]

Korean Peninsula 2021: Managing the crisis and adapting to the new situation

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf After the initial shock caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, during 2021 the two Koreas focused their efforts in managing the crisis and adapting to the changed situation. If, on the one hand, North Korea maintained its strategy of total isolation to protect the country from the spread of […]

Taiwan 2021: Heightened geo-economic relevance amid rising cross-strait tensions*

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf Taiwan remained one of the crossroads of international politics in the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Cross-Strait relations with China continued their downward trend, with increasing military tensions in the airspace and waters surrounding the island, leading to speculations of a military takeover. The PLA activism in […]

The Philippines 2021: Populist legacy and looming uncertainties

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf   The Philippines started 2021 with a temporary relief as the arrival of limited COVID-19 vaccine supplies ushered in the government’s launch of its national inoculation programme. However, the periodic surge of COVID-19 cases exposed the constant inadequacies of the Philippine pandemic response, straining once again the country’s […]

Laos 2017-2021: Revival of the subsistence ethic

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf Since 2016, Laos has seen a tightening of social control by the ruling Communist Party. At the same time, socialism has returned as the cornerstone of the official discourse. While some have argued that the socialist discourse only serves the purpose of legitimizing either one-party rule or capitalist […]

Cambodia 2018-2021: From democracy to autocracy

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf The years between 2018 and 2021 continued a pattern for Cambodia of a rolling back of democracy, human rights, and civil liberties, and saw the completion of the transition from a multi-party illiberal democracy to a one-party, authoritarian state. As attacks against political opposition increased, and political space […]

Malaysia 2021: A widening political legitimacy crisis

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf In 2021, Malaysia saw the deepening of a political legitimacy deficit as demands for reforms and political change remained largely unattended. The first half of the year was marked by a state of emergency, declared by the government in the face of a new wave of COVID-19 infections. […]

Thailand 2019-2021: Military, monarchy, protests

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf 2019-2021 was a peculiar triennium for Thailand. In 2019, the military leaders who had seized power five years earlier with a coup d’état formed a civilian government via a carefully managed general election. Concomitantly, King Maha Vajiralongkorn, on the throne since 2016, underwent his coronation. While the rituals […]

Myanmar 2021: Repression and resistance in a multi-cornered conflict

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf The parliamentary elections of November 2020 which were won – once again – in a landslide by the National League for Democracy (NLD) were followed by three months of mounting tensions between the winning party and the Tatmadaw (the armed forces) and its party affiliate. On 1 February […]

Bangladesh 2021: The year of the golden jubilee and the second wave of pandemic

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf In 2021, the pandemic continued inflicting a burdensome disruption on the Bangladeshi economy, weighting heavier on the poor and the new poor. However, in terms of macroeconomic indicators, the economy gave signs of early recovery. Also, Bangladesh was declared ready to officially graduate from Least Developed Country (LDC) […]

India 2021: Politics amid the pandemic

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf The most important development of 2021 in India was a devastating second wave of COVID-19 infections that brought the country’s healthcare system to its knees between April and June. While the management of the pandemic in a country like India represented an enormous challenge in itself, the Bharatiya […]

Sri Lanka in 2021: From pandemic emergency to political and economic crisis

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf The political evolution in Sri Lanka in 2021 confirmed the negative predictions that had been made in the previous year, both for domestic and foreign policy. Internally, president Rajapaksa’s tendency to centralize power in his own hands, and in those of his family and close supporters continued. The […]

Pakistan 2021: In pursuit of a pivotal role in post-pandemic South Asia

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf In 2020, the government of Prime Minister Imran Khan launched an economic diplomacy project titled Economic Outreach Initiative. It aims to unlock Pakistan’s growth potential and showcase national trade, tourism and foreign investment capacities through a paradigm shift of foreign policy from geopolitics to geoeconomics. The Khan administration […]

Afghanistan 2021: US withdrawal, the Taliban return and regional geopolitics

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf Afghanistan in 2021 was characterised by the withdrawal of US troops and by the sudden fall of Kabul to the Taliban in August. After 20 years of war, and US$ 2.3 trillion spent in the conflict, the US was eventually out of Afghanistan and the Taliban back in […]

Iran 2021: The year of transition

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf The election of Ebrahim Raisi as the new president of Iran in June has been the most significant development in Iran during 2021. It represented the end of an era -the reformist-pragmatist one- and the beginning of a new one controlled by the conservative establishment. This article analyses […]

Azerbaijan 2021: Towards a new beginning?

Available also in pdf – Download Pdf The Fall of 2020 represented a watershed in Azerbaijan’s contemporary history, as a result of the victory in the «44 Days War» over Nagorno-Karabakh against Armenia, on the one hand, and the start of natural gas export to European markets through the EU Southern Gas Corridor, on the […]