Bhavan Jaipragas

Hong Kong

Bhavan Jaipragas

Asia Correspondent

Bhavan is Asia Correspondent for the SCMP, covering breaking news, politics, diplomacy, trade and Southeast Asian macroeconomic trends. His work for the Post's Asia desk also focuses on the region's multifaceted interactions with the United States and China. A Singapore native, Bhavan previously worked for Agence France-Presse.

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Latest from Bhavan Jaipragas

‘It’s not a reality show’: Singapore’s Lee says decision on his successor will take ‘a little longer’ as 4G ministers search for ‘first among equals’ to be next PM

Picking the city state’s next PM was a ‘deadly serious life-and-death decision’ for the PAP’s 4G ministers, Lee Hsien Loong told a party conference on Sunday, adding he was ‘confident that they will settle it before the next general election comes around’.

Picking the city state’s next PM was a ‘deadly serious life-and-death decision’ for the PAP’s 4G ministers, Lee Hsien Loong told a party conference on Sunday, adding he was ‘confident that they will settle it before the next general election comes around’.

‘It’s not a reality show’: Singapore’s Lee says decision on his successor will take ‘a little longer’ as 4G ministers search for ‘first among equals’ to be next PM
28 Nov 2021 - 3:45PM
Analysing the Xi-Biden summit; ASEAN and its change on China; US trying for a new trade deal?
19 Nov 2021 - 5:16PM
Beware Putin amid US-China rivalry, Hillary Clinton warns at Singapore forum on emerging new world order

The Russian president has sought to ‘hug China more’, as he uses non-state actors to project power globally, the former US secretary of state told the Bloomberg New Economy Forum via video link.

The Russian president has sought to ‘hug China more’, as he uses non-state actors to project power globally, the former US secretary of state told the Bloomberg New Economy Forum via video link.

Beware Putin amid US-China rivalry, Hillary Clinton warns at Singapore forum on emerging new world order
19 Nov 2021 - 9:52PM
China-US duel to be multilateral trade champions and CPTPP in keen focus at Singapore forum

Political forecaster Ian Bremmer says Chinese involvement in CPTPP would be positive, but domestic politics makes US involvement unlikely.

Political forecaster Ian Bremmer says Chinese involvement in CPTPP would be positive, but domestic politics makes US involvement unlikely.

China-US duel to be multilateral trade champions and CPTPP in keen focus at Singapore forum
19 Nov 2021 - 9:35AM
Singapore PM Lee Hsien Loong warns of US-China ‘mishap’ over Taiwan

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said heightened tensions were unlikely to lead to ‘war overnight’, but a ‘miscalculation’ over the island could still occur.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said heightened tensions were unlikely to lead to ‘war overnight’, but a ‘miscalculation’ over the island could still occur.

Singapore PM Lee Hsien Loong warns of US-China ‘mishap’ over Taiwan
18 Nov 2021 - 11:21PM
US plans ‘coalition of democracies’ for trade but won’t join CPTPP: Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo

The Biden administration is to seek a ‘proper economic framework’ to maintain a ‘secure supply chain’, Gina Raimondo has revealed.

The Biden administration is to seek a ‘proper economic framework’ to maintain a ‘secure supply chain’, Gina Raimondo has revealed.

US plans ‘coalition of democracies’ for trade but won’t join CPTPP: Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo
17 Nov 2021 - 9:15PM
Myanmar eyes return of tourism, investment to buoy struggling economy: junta official

In an exclusive interview with This Week In Asia, the junta’s information minister Maung Maung Ohn said Myanmar was planning to reopen its borders with Thailand and China starting in January.

In an exclusive interview with This Week In Asia, the junta’s information minister Maung Maung Ohn said Myanmar was planning to reopen its borders with Thailand and China starting in January.

Myanmar eyes return of tourism, investment to buoy struggling economy: junta official
16 Nov 2021 - 9:33PM
As I see it | Byte back: Big Tech makes toxic social media worse, so governments should step in

‘Facebook Papers’ show reforms desperately needed including nuance and aggression filters and ‘nudges’ from policymakers.

‘Facebook Papers’ show reforms desperately needed including nuance and aggression filters and ‘nudges’ from policymakers.

Byte back: Big Tech makes toxic social media worse, so governments should step in
12 Nov 2021 - 9:03AM
COP26: is carbon pricing the climate change silver bullet world leaders would like you to believe?

It’s the oven-ready solution governments hail as key to reducing emissions. But sceptics say it is only likely to have a marginal effect - and that is precisely why it’s so popular.

It’s the oven-ready solution governments hail as key to reducing emissions. But sceptics say it is only likely to have a marginal effect - and that is precisely why it’s so popular.

COP26: is carbon pricing the climate change silver bullet world leaders would like you to believe?
1 Nov 2021 - 12:18PM
Malaysia unveils US$80 billion biggest ever budget in feel-good boost to post-Covid recovery

Wide-ranging plan includes cash for low-income workers; subsidies for food, fuel and firms hiring women; and aid for small and medium businesses.

Wide-ranging plan includes cash for low-income workers; subsidies for food, fuel and firms hiring women; and aid for small and medium businesses.

Malaysia unveils US$80 billion biggest ever budget in feel-good boost to post-Covid recovery
29 Oct 2021 - 11:00PM
Xi-Asean summit boosts China’s plan to upgrade Southeast Asia ties to comprehensive strategic partnership

Singapore and Malaysia have signalled their readiness for Asean to elevate its China ties to a ‘comprehensive strategic partnership’, which the bloc and Australia agreed to establish on Wednesday.

Singapore and Malaysia have signalled their readiness for Asean to elevate its China ties to a ‘comprehensive strategic partnership’, which the bloc and Australia agreed to establish on Wednesday.

Xi-Asean summit boosts China’s plan to upgrade Southeast Asia ties to comprehensive strategic partnership
27 Oct 2021 - 10:25PM
Asean in uncharted waters as it snubs Myanmar junta chief Min Aung Hlaing

The move has been described as a blow to the junta’s legitimacy and a win for democracy. It may also be aimed at sparing the blushes of world leaders.

The move has been described as a blow to the junta’s legitimacy and a win for democracy. It may also be aimed at sparing the blushes of world leaders.

Asean in uncharted waters as it snubs Myanmar junta chief Min Aung Hlaing
25 Oct 2021 - 10:11PM
As inflation haunts the US and Europe, rate hikes loom. Will Asia follow suit?

While Western central bankers are rethinking their ultra-easy monetary policies, the wider sentiment in Asia is to stay put.

While Western central bankers are rethinking their ultra-easy monetary policies, the wider sentiment in Asia is to stay put.

As inflation haunts the US and Europe, rate hikes loom. Will Asia follow suit?
21 Oct 2021 - 9:58PM
As the dust settles, Asia reflects on what the Aukus security pact means for regional harmony

In this issue of Global Impact, we unpack the diverse responses in the Asian region to the Aukus security pact between the United States, Britain and Australia.

In this issue of Global Impact, we unpack the diverse responses in the Asian region to the Aukus security pact between the United States, Britain and Australia.

As the dust settles, Asia reflects on what the Aukus security pact means for regional harmony
29 Oct 2021 - 12:04PM
Myanmar junta blames ‘foreign intervention’ for Asean summit exclusion

Spokesman says US and EU have been putting pressure on Asian bloc member states.

Spokesman says US and EU have been putting pressure on Asian bloc member states.

Myanmar junta blames ‘foreign intervention’ for Asean summit exclusion
16 Oct 2021 - 11:52PM
Singapore’s anti-foreign interference law will ‘substantially narrow’ civic space, rights groups say

The contentious new Fica law will allow the state to ‘expand curtailment of civil freedoms to the detriment of its people’, a statement by 11 groups said.

The contentious new Fica law will allow the state to ‘expand curtailment of civil freedoms to the detriment of its people’, a statement by 11 groups said.

Singapore’s anti-foreign interference law will ‘substantially narrow’ civic space, rights groups say
13 Oct 2021 - 7:58PM
Malaysia joins Southeast Asia’s ‘living with Covid’ push with restart of interstate, outbound travel

In a widely expected move, Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced the reopening of interstate borders and relaxed rules for overseas travel.

In a widely expected move, Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced the reopening of interstate borders and relaxed rules for overseas travel.

Malaysia joins Southeast Asia’s ‘living with Covid’ push with restart of interstate, outbound travel
11 Oct 2021 - 12:09AM
Is China the ‘Country X’ Singapore’s foreign interference law dare not name? ‘There are no angels in this game’, Shanmugam says

‘Naming and shaming’ is a ‘nuclear option’ that Singapore is best to avoid with some countries or it risks too high a political cost, experts say.

‘Naming and shaming’ is a ‘nuclear option’ that Singapore is best to avoid with some countries or it risks too high a political cost, experts say.

Is China the ‘Country X’ Singapore’s foreign interference law dare not name? ‘There are no angels in this game’, Shanmugam says
9 Oct 2021 - 8:00AM
As I see it | South China Sea tensions: why Malaysia’s ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ approach to China is deliberate

Although Malaysia has pursued a cautious foreign policy towards China, it recently ticked off the giant nation over maritime incursions into its waters.

Although Malaysia has pursued a cautious foreign policy towards China, it recently ticked off the giant nation over maritime incursions into its waters.

South China Sea tensions: why Malaysia’s ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ approach to China is deliberate
8 Oct 2021 - 9:30AM
Malaysia summons Chinese envoy for second time since June, over vessels in South China Sea

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs says ambassador Ouyang Yujing was summoned on Monday to ‘protest’ the presence of Chinese ships in Malaysia’s exclusive economic zone.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs says ambassador Ouyang Yujing was summoned on Monday to ‘protest’ the presence of Chinese ships in Malaysia’s exclusive economic zone.

Malaysia summons Chinese envoy for second time since June, over vessels in South China Sea
5 Oct 2021 - 9:09PM
Singapore parliament passes foreign interference bill amid opposition calls for checks on abuse of power

There are concerns Fica is too broad and may ensnare critics. Law and home affairs minister K. Shanmugam did not identify sources of foreign meddling, but mentioned expulsion of Chinese-American academic Huang Jing.

There are concerns Fica is too broad and may ensnare critics. Law and home affairs minister K. Shanmugam did not identify sources of foreign meddling, but mentioned expulsion of Chinese-American academic Huang Jing.

Singapore parliament passes foreign interference bill amid opposition calls for checks on abuse of power
5 Oct 2021 - 12:01AM
‘The most powerful law’ in Singapore: Foreign Interference bill brings concerns for civil society

The Fica bill will allow authorities to demand user information from internet companies and target people deemed to be collaborating with foreign actors, with the government saying it is not aimed at ‘criticisms’ but at ‘covert and clandestine activities’.

The Fica bill will allow authorities to demand user information from internet companies and target people deemed to be collaborating with foreign actors, with the government saying it is not aimed at ‘criticisms’ but at ‘covert and clandestine activities’.

‘The most powerful law’ in Singapore: Foreign Interference bill brings concerns for civil society
2 Oct 2021 - 9:47AM
‘Not a defence alliance’: Australia looks to assuage Asean’s concerns over Aukus nuclear subs deal

Canberra’s envoy to the Southeast Asian bloc says the arrangement will not change Australia’s commitment to Asean-led regional infrastructure.

Canberra’s envoy to the Southeast Asian bloc says the arrangement will not change Australia’s commitment to Asean-led regional infrastructure.

‘Not a defence alliance’: Australia looks to assuage Asean’s concerns over Aukus nuclear subs deal
21 Sep 2021 - 11:56AM
As I see it | US and China’s procrastination on Myanmar UN seat row does more harm than good

Myanmar’s anti-junta forces have endured months of inaction and empty talk from the international community, and that is likely to continue.

Myanmar’s anti-junta forces have endured months of inaction and empty talk from the international community, and that is likely to continue.

US and China’s procrastination on Myanmar UN seat row does more harm than good
17 Sep 2021 - 10:03AM
Singapore tables internet-era foreign interference law citing cases in Australia, EU

Without naming the countries involved, the home affairs ministry outlined two incidents involving alleged China-linked activities in Australia and the EU.

Without naming the countries involved, the home affairs ministry outlined two incidents involving alleged China-linked activities in Australia and the EU.

Singapore tables internet-era foreign interference law citing cases in Australia, EU
13 Sep 2021 - 9:35PM
Call for ‘defensive war’ against Myanmar’s junta sparks alarm, even as young citizens cautiously back revolt

The international community has expressed concerns over the declaration, including the difficulty of distributing assistance during a bloody civil war.

The international community has expressed concerns over the declaration, including the difficulty of distributing assistance during a bloody civil war.

Call for ‘defensive war’ against Myanmar’s junta sparks alarm, even as young citizens cautiously back revolt
9 Sep 2021 - 8:26PM
Two decades after 9/11: was Southeast Asia’s support of the US war on terror worth it?

The region largely welcomed greater US cooperation after 9/11, with the war on terror helping some Asean states to further their own agendas.

The region largely welcomed greater US cooperation after 9/11, with the war on terror helping some Asean states to further their own agendas.

Two decades after 9/11: was Southeast Asia’s support of the US war on terror worth it?
13 Sep 2021 - 4:59PM
Kamala Harris in Singapore and Vietnam; India's changing US, China and Afghanistan relations
28 Sep 2021 - 1:45PM
Why the monarchy is the big winner from Malaysia’s political crisis

Newly installed Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob has sought cooperation with rivals still smarting from defeat, at the request of Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah.

Newly installed Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob has sought cooperation with rivals still smarting from defeat, at the request of Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah.

Why the monarchy is the big winner from Malaysia’s political crisis
31 Aug 2021 - 9:38AM
Malaysian PM Ismail Sabri Yaakob returns Muhyiddin loyalists to key roles, sparking criticism

Ousted premier’s finance, trade and defence ministers returned to old roles, with vaccine point person appointed to health minister.

Ousted premier’s finance, trade and defence ministers returned to old roles, with vaccine point person appointed to health minister.

Malaysian PM Ismail Sabri Yaakob returns Muhyiddin loyalists to key roles, sparking criticism
27 Aug 2021 - 8:33PM