President Donald Trump’s absence from next week’s East Asia Summit in Thailand has been met with little surprise in Southeast Asia. Photo: AP

What does Donald Trump’s East Asia Summit absence mean for China’s regional influence?

  • Observers believe the president’s absence reflects his disdain for long-distance trips that do not culminate in blockbuster deals
  • Southeast Asian countries have sought to keep the US engaged as a means to counter China’s increasing strategic assertions
Topic |   Asean
President Donald Trump’s absence from next week’s East Asia Summit in Thailand has been met with little surprise in Southeast Asia. Photo: AP
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