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  • China in South Pacific

    Making overtures to island nations in strategic backyard

    BEIJING -- China is offering generous financial support to countries in the South Pacific in hopes of strengthening its economic and military influence and eclipsing the Taiwanese and American presence in the region. President Xi Jinping met Sat

    November 24, 2014 03:08 am JST
  • Stewart Firth

    Xi visit shows Fiji sanctions' failure

    Fiji went to the polls in September for the first time in eight years. After the 2006 election, the incoming government was quickly overthrown by Commodore Frank Bainimarama, head of the military. This time, Bainimarama turned politician and led his

    November 20, 2014 07:00 pm JST
  • Washington, the AIIB and Taiwan

    US not fighting China-backed fund, senior official says

    TAIPEI -- Striking a reconciliatory tone, a senior U.S. diplomat said Thursday that Washington is not trying to undermine Chinese efforts to create a fund aimed at helping develop infrastructure in Asia. The statement by Kurt Tong, U.S. principl

    November 20, 2014 06:00 pm JST
  • Islamic State: The new face of terror

    In its quest to acquire manpower and support for its operations in Syria and Iraq, the Islamic State militant group is making deep inroads into Asia -- and achieving a level of success that al-Qaida could only have dreamed of. The growing presence o

    November 20, 2014 12:00 am JST
  • Kamal Alam: Syria offers clues to Islamic State's future in Asia

    One of the more remarkable documents found in the Osama bin Laden compound included a letter to the Islamic State group of Iraq and Syria cautioning Abu Musab al-Zarqawi over his group's extreme violence. The insurgency in Fallujah and Tal Afar

    November 20, 2014 12:00 am JST
  • Fighting Islamic State

    Australia targets radical Islam at home

    BANGKOK -- Australia is emerging as a major breeding ground for radical Islamic terrorists, and this has prompted a swift and tough response from Canberra to protect the country against the rise of Islamic State, Syria's Jabat Al Nusra and other ter

    November 20, 2014 12:00 am JST
  • International banking

    Japan megabanks look for new sources of foreign-currency funds

    TOKYO -- Japan's three megabanks are raising more funds in currencies other than yen and dollars as they seek opportunities in overseas lending, such as by providing credit to blue-chip companies overseas and offering syndicated loans for resource d

    November 18, 2014 07:00 pm JST
  • Japanese commodity prices

    Weaker yen sparking demand for domestic wheat

    TOKYO -- Demand is growing in Japan for domestically grown wheat, which is used mainly to make udon noodles. Some restaurant chains and bakeries are switching to domestic wheat as the weaker yen pushes up prices for imported grain. The National

    November 18, 2014 01:00 pm JST
  • Australia central bank says Japan funds might hold A$ high

    SYDNEY (Dow Jones) --The likelihood that Japanese investment funds will boost Australian bond purchases risks keeping the Australian dollar elevated, the country's central bank said in minutes of its Nov. 4 policy meeting published Tuesday. It al

    November 18, 2014 10:26 am JST
  • Pacific trade pact

    Australia, China reach free trade agreement

    SYDNEY -- The leaders of Australia and China concluded a free trade agreement Monday that will mutually remove tariffs and foster investment, as well as bring a yuan clearing bank to Sydney. Chinese President Xi Jinping addressed Australia's par

    November 18, 2014 07:42 am JST
  • G-20 outlook

    Ex-head of Canadian think tank talks prospects for G-20

    BRISBANE, Australia -- The G-20 Leaders' Summit concluded Sunday, chaired by Australia for the first time. Tom Bernes, distinguished fellow and former executive director of the Centre for International Governance Innovation, a Canadian think tank, s

    November 17, 2014 07:00 pm JST
  • Australia, China announce conclusion of FTA negotiations

    SYDNEY (Kyodo) -- Australia and China are almost ready to sign a landmark free trade agreement, after more than 20 rounds of negotiations over the last nine years, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Monday. "I am pleased to announce the

    November 17, 2014 01:15 pm JST
  • Asia tensions

    Japan, US move toward joint submarine development with Australia

    TOKYO -- Japan and the U.S. are considering increasing military cooperation with Australia by sharing submarine technology. Australia currently owns six Collins-class diesel-electric submarines, based on an old design. Their capabilities are

    November 17, 2014 01:00 pm JST
  • Little substance to the G-20's show of cooperation

    BRISBANE, Australia -- People around the world will be "better off," Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said assuredly of the Group of 20's 1,000-point plan for revving up global economic growth. The global recovery has been feeble, as G-20 l

    November 17, 2014 04:17 am JST
  • China, US step up

    G-20 unity on global warming puts heat on Japan

    BRISBANE, Australia -- Group of 20 leaders have agreed to work toward a new international pact on fighting climate change next year and said more cooperation on energy is needed. The G-20 summit, which ended here Sunday, was the first to treat e

    November 17, 2014 02:59 am JST
  • Abe, Obama, Abbott vow to deepen trilateral security ties

    BRISBANE, Australia (Kyodo) --The leaders of Japan, the United States and Australia agreed Sunday to beef up security cooperation while emphasizing their commitment to solving maritime rows according to international law, with an eye on China's grow

    November 17, 2014 12:05 am JST
  • G-20 hammers out growth strategies to boost collective GDP by 2.1%

    BRISBANE, Australia (Kyodo) -- Leaders of the Group of 20 economies hammered out growth strategies to boost their collective gross domestic product by 2.1 percent by 2018 on Sunday, aiming to brush aside fears that the global economy will enter a s

    November 16, 2014 11:45 pm JST
  • Obama pledges commitment to Asia in remaining tenure

    BRISBANE, Australia (Kyodo) -- U.S. President Barack Obama pledged Saturday to remain committed to the Asia-Pacific region, defining it as a core of his administration's foreign policy in the remaining two years of his tenure. "I'm here today to

    November 15, 2014 08:00 pm JST
  • Japan-Australia initiative to counter China infrastructure bank

    BRISBANE, Australia -- Japan and Australia are setting up a fund to develop infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region -- a framework intended to counter a new development bank led by China. Set to launch with about $150 million next year, the fu

    November 15, 2014 05:25 am JST
  • Brian Toohey: Australian schools about to get biblical

    Australia's federal government is set to adopt a review of the school curriculum that will severely cut back content about Asia and explicitly celebrate what it calls the nation's "Judeo-Christian heritage, values and beliefs." Following recomme

    November 13, 2014 12:00 am JST