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Published 1st May 2009

Vol 2 (AAC) No 7

The battle for the Indian Ocean

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures
Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

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Competition for strategic advantage in the world’s most important shipping lanes draws Africa and Asia into a regional stand-off

For the next few decades, the Indian Ocean will be the setting for competition between three great powers: the United States adjusting to an increasingly multipolar world, and the rising military and economic powers of India and China.

Somalia tests maritime solidarity

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

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The international anti-piracy mission off the coast of Somalia is the type of cooperative mission that the United States sees as helpful to reduce the strain on its overstretched m...

A shake-out after the crash

China and India want to snap up assets as metal markets hit the floor and the mining houses sack workers

Western mining houses are pulling out of Zambia due to the copper price slump, leaving Chinese and Indian investors to battle over the abandoned assets. As the copper price crash...

Oil, votes and Beijing

As Luanda tries to shore up its finances as export revenues tumble, China’s offer of credit becomes more important

The combination of lower world oil prices, tighter credit and production cuts has increased Luanda's reliance on its countertrade credits with China. As Angola holds the presiden...

Not the promised land

China would not be taking up tracts of land in Africa to meet its domestic food requirements insisted Beijing's Deputy Agriculture Minister Niu Dun in April, but reports on the g...

With your permission

On 7 May, Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs released a long-delayed white paper on foreign aid confirming what Taipei's allies are keenly aware of: Taiwan's foreign aid has dro...


Thaksin Shinawatra

Former Prime Minister (2001-2006), Thailand

Known for his polarising effect in Thai politics, his flight from justice and his interest in football teams in England, Thaksin Shinawatra also presided over a sharp increase in...

Hirofumi Nakasone

Foreign Minister, Japan

Born in 1945, the Keio University graduate began his career with Asahi Chemical Industry in 1968 but turned to politics in 1983 after his father, Yasuhiro Nakasone, became Prime Mi...

Yuan Nangsheng

China's Ambassador to Zimbabwe

After Mao Zedong completed his first Soviet-style Five Year Plan in 1954, China's economic problems deteriorated sharply. That year, China's Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Yuan Nansheng, ...

Kim Yong-nam

Chairman, Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly, North Korea

Born in Pyongyang in 1928, while the Korean peninsula was under Japanese occupation, Kim Yong-nam came of age as Soviet-backed Kim Il-sung consolidated power over North Korea an...