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    Is Huai Khwang really a new Chinatown?

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 18/09/2018

    » Bluntly speaking, Huai Khwang, which has been dubbed a new Chinatown, is not really a Chinatown in the truest sense of the word -- not another Yaowarat for sure. The 400-metre strip along Pracha Rat Bamphen Road at best represents the dynamic and raw passion of new Chinese entrepreneurs, wanting to make money from millions of Chinese tourists through social media. New Chinese restaurants with dishes from Yunnan and Guangxi, especially the spicy mala hotpot as well as Chinese-style coffee shops, give this small business district the facade of a Chinatown.


    10 ways to maintain Hun Sen's 'barami'

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 11/09/2018

    » In the past election spin, it was about barami (charisma). When Hun Sen entered politics in the mid-1970s, nobody thought he would have the staying power to last so long. Thirty-three years ago, he was the world's youngest prime minister. Today, he is still around having outlasted every other world leader to rank as longest-reigning prime minister.


    New mindsets needed at Suvarnabhumi

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 04/09/2018

    » Warning: Cheap packages tours to Thailand from China for the coming Mid-Autumn Festival (third week of September) and National Day (first week of October) are nearly fully booked. However, some major tourist agencies in the posh Chaoyangmenwai Street still hold out hope that Thailand will waive visa fees for their holidaymakers once again.


    KL-Beijing ties and the 'Mahathir doctrine'

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 28/08/2018

    » Be careful what you say these days, especially when it comes to comments about Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, also known as Tun Mahathir, or Tun Ma by Chinese-language dailies in Malaysia, and his five-day visit to China. One can take what one hears literally at one's own risk.


    'New Pakistan' faces big challenges

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 21/08/2018

    » Pakistan's newly sworn-in Prime Minister Imran Khan has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to make his country's presence felt both regionally and globally.


    Making sense of Jokowi's second term bid

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 14/08/2018

    » Do not let the state-of-the-art Soekarno-Hatta International Airport Terminal 3 and the slogan "Energy of Asia" for this month's Asian Games fool you about Indonesia's place in the world. It is just the beginning.


    US-China rivalry shifts to mainland SEA

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 07/08/2018

    » The sense of deja vu at last week's annual Asean foreign ministers meeting in Singapore regarding progress on the code of conduct in the South China Sea -- an agreement with China on a single draft for future negotiations -- is an ominous sign that the regional grouping is already at the centre of US-China rivalry.


    Hun Sen plays global politics with election

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 31/07/2018

    » The international community, through the United Nations, helped Cambodia to organise its first and only "free and fair" elections in 1993. It was a wonderful moment for a country emerging from civil war, which has confidently moved forward ever since. Cambodia has been very much on its own, with up and down political contours. This past Sunday, Cambodia held its sixth election, with the Cambodian People's Party winning the majority of seats.


    Putting hearts and minds in Thai-US ties

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 24/07/2018

    » The international rescue of 12 boys and their football coach in Chiang Rai earlier this month quickly permeated into the conference room of the Thai-US dialogue in Washington DC last week. The feel-good atmosphere jump-started the much-needed dialogue between the region's oldest allies.


    South Korea is wooing Asean and India

    News, Kavi Chongkittavorn, Published on 17/07/2018

    » For the first time since the end of the 1950-53 Korean War, South Korea, under the helm of President Moon Jae-in, has effectively been embedded in the regional scheme of things --political/security, economic and social/cultural. The country's previous four presidents -- Kim Dae-jung, Roh Moo-hyun, Lee Myung-bak and Park Geun-hye -- tried to do the same but sadly they repeatedly failed. Every time these leaders wanted to focus on Southeast Asia and South Asia, something happened in the Northeast, the Korean Peninsula in particular, that immediately distracted them. They became mesmerised and forgot the region. There was no consistency whatsoever.

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