On Monday, the Sino-Myanmar natural gas pipeline began pumping to China, part of the Middle Kingdom’s drive to diversify its energy supplies, but, in light of recent diplomatic troubles, China is quick to shine a rosy light on this latest development. The Chinese state media charm offensive went into full swing. Xinhua described the opening ceremony as follows: "When torches flamed in the sky of Namkham Measuring Station of the Myanmar-China Gas Pipeline, a storm of applause and cheers broke out."
The forces of globalization have ushered in chaotic change to metro areas around the world. It is becoming more and more difficult for a place to remain isolated from the costs and benefits of this new global order. Cities and their surrounding suburbs have no choice but to manage globalization or be managed by it.
For two years, the US State Department and the Pentagon have been incubating a plan to win the Afghan war without actually defeating the Taliban on the battleground. The idea is to triumph commercially by building a “New Silk Road”—a transportation-and-energy route to the West whose long-term financial dividends would prompt combatants to set aside their arms and get rich instead. Now China is stepping up an apparent effort to outpace the US plan to reconstruct the ancient trade route.
The shift in economic focus might sound very much like the U.S. pivot to Asia, and Russia has indeed begun to reassert its military presence in the Asia-Pacific like the United States and other regional powers. What is different, however, is that Moscow has taken great pains to emphasize that its primary goal is to cooperate, not compete, with Beijing. Russia denies that there is even the slightest element of trying to contain China in its regional policy.
President Enrique Pena Nieto’s PRI and the like-minded PAN have the congressional votes to pass an energy reform. Doing so without preparing Mexicans for the change could be counterproductive. The PRI has also vowed to unveil its own proposal later this year. But pushing a little-known reform on Mexicans at the very last minute may be as troublesome as not having a reform at all. Mexico has a historic opportunity to change its energy future. The country's politicians will make history if they educate their citizens about why their insular oil nationalism is no longer an option.
The pace of Burma’s political, economic, and social reforms is being matched by a boom in investment and construction... Burma’s geostrategic location between India and China and extensive natural resource wealth make it a natural crossroads for Asian trade and a focal point for broader regional integration.
The conference was opened with a welcome speech from the Advisor to HM the King and Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Derasat, Dr. Muhammad Abdul Ghaffar, in which he described a strategic triangle, Iran, the GCC and the USA that defines the current balance of regional security.
Tonight’s presidential debate will focus mostly on the Middle Eastern conflicts. But the candidates should take the time to discuss where the world is cooperating. One such place is the developing world where nation-states are joining to deliver electricity to those 1.3 billion people who are now going without any power.