East Asia Summit

Asean's once united purpose appears adrift on South China Sea

Through using their influence, China and the US are dividing Asean's members, eroding the consensus that has been the basis for its decision-making since it was formed 45 years ago.

Taking place amid so much global financial uncertainty, this year's East Asia Summit should have been firmly focused on building and strengthening regional economic ties.

Friday, 23 November, 2012, 2:22am

Unruly Asean not playing Beijing's game on territorial disputes

(From left) Philippine President Benigno Aquino, Singapore's Lee Hsien Loong, Thailand's Yingluck Shinawatra, Vietnam's Nguyen Tan Dung, Barack Obama of the US and Cambodia's Hun Sen. Photo: EPA

The frustration and sarcasm were evident as Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang outlined the "mathematics" at play this week behind China's troubled relations with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

22 Nov 2012 - 3:56am

China, Japan and South Korea to meet for free-trade talks

Premier Wen Jiabao (left) toasts Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen (right) at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh on Sunday. Photo: AFP

China, Japan and South Korea will hold the first round of meetings early next year on a free-trade agreement vital to an Asia-wide deal, even as they spar over disputed islands.

The negotiations of those countries, which represent three of Asia's four biggest economies, are vital to the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, a 16-nation accord announced on Tuesday.

22 Nov 2012 - 3:56am

Sino-US stability helps the whole world, Wen tells Obama

Barack Obama and Wen Jiabao had their last meeting together during the East Asia Summit at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh. Photo: AP

Premier Wen Jiabao yesterday used his last meeting with US President Barack Obama to push for stability between Washington and Beijing’s new leadership.

In a wide-ranging meeting at the Asean East Asia Summit in Phnom Penh, the two leaders discussed economic and security issues, including the growing territorial disputes between China and its neighbours.

21 Nov 2012 - 3:45am

Beijing praises Cambodia's efforts to limit discussions on South China Sea

ASEAN and its partners including China, Australia, India, South Korea, Japan and New Zealand on Tuesday launched negotiations for the RCEP. Photo: Xinhua

China on Tuesday defended Cambodia's controversial bid to limit international discussions of South China Sea tensions, with a Foreign Ministry spokesman praising Phnom Penh for trying to "safeguard Asean unity".

21 Nov 2012 - 1:40pm

Code of conduct for South China Sea can defuse time bomb

US President Barack Obama (right) talks to Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao at the East Asia Summit in Phnom Penh. With domestic politics now out the way, China and the US have shifted their attention back to the Asean geopolitical chessboard. Photo: AFP

The curtains of domestic politics have barely come down and the United States and China have already shifted their attention back to the Asean geopolitical chessboard in their battle for influence over the Asia-Pacific.

21 Nov 2012 - 2:55am

Obama urges restraint amid Asian territorial disputes

 US President Barack Obama, Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen and China's Premier Wen Jiabao at the East Asia Summit in Phnom Penh. Photo: AP

US President Barack Obama urged Asian leaders on Tuesday to rein in tensions in the South China Sea and other disputed territory but stopped short of firmly backing allies Japan, the Philippines and Vietnam in their disputes with China.

20 Nov 2012 - 9:29pm

Obama meets Wen after political transitions

US President Barack Obama looks at Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao at the 7th East Asia Summit plenary session in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on November 20, 2012. Photo: EPA

President Barack Obama met Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Tuesday, in the highest-level exchange between the two sides since the US election and an engineered power transfer in China.

20 Nov 2012 - 5:18pm

Obama to dive into South China Sea turmoil

Barack Obama takes his seat between Wen Jiabao (right) and Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda at the Asean summit in Phnom Penh. Photo: EPA

US President Barack Obama was on Tuesday set to defy Beijing’s protests and use a summit to raise concerns over South China Sea rows that have sent diplomatic and trade shockwaves across the region.

20 Nov 2012 - 5:07pm

South China Sea dispute wrecks Asean unity

Asean members stumble in quest for unity again. Photo: EPA

Asean unity yet again lay in tatters last night – thwarting a Chinese-backed effort to keep South China Sea territorial disputes off the agenda of today’s international leaders’ summit in Cambodia.

20 Nov 2012 - 4:04am

Hun Sen aims to rule until he is 90

Hun Sen (right) with Barack Obama. Photo: AP

US President Barack Obama arrived in Cambodia last night having just won four more years in office, but that is nothing compared to his host, Hun Sen.

The Cambodian prime minister has held power since Ronald Reagan was in the White House, and says he is not stepping down until he is 90.

20 Nov 2012 - 3:25am

Wen Jiabao will try to steer East Asia Summit away from territorial disputes

The Chinese flag is prepared for a welcome ceremony in the Cambodian capital. Photo: EPA

Premier Wen Jiabao will be pushing economic co-operation as he meets counterparts in his last regional summit today - despite attempts to drive South China Sea issues back onto the agenda.

20 Nov 2012 - 3:29am

Obama arrives in Cambodia for Asean summit

Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen greets US President Barack Obama ahead of the Asean-US leaders meeting in Phnom Penh on Monday. Photo: AP

Making history twice within hours, President Barack Obama on Monday became the first US president to set foot in Cambodia, a country once known for its Khmer Rouge “killing fields" after leaving behind flag-waving crowds on the streets of Myanmar.

19 Nov 2012 - 8:41pm

Obama urges Myanmar to hasten reforms on historic visit

US President Barack Obama meets with Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi at her residence in Yangon on Monday. Photo: AP

President Barack Obama urged Myanmar on Monday to hasten its “remarkable” reforms on a historic visit during which he was feted by huge crowds and met Aung San Suu Kyi at the home where she was long locked up.

19 Nov 2012 - 6:07pm

Re-elected Barack Obama on diplomatic offensive in Asia

Re-elected Barack Obama on diplomatic offensive in Asia

US President Barack Obama will engage China and its neighbours in a fresh diplomatic offensive after securing a historic second term in the White House.

8 Nov 2012 - 4:15am