The last month has seen the Russia-Ukraine war continue to deepen, with impacts starting to be felt in earnest by countries around the world. Additionally, there have been national shifts in countries like Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Philippines, which all have new leadership.
However, the last month has also seen the end of Ramadan, so to our Muslim readership, we wish you Eid Mubarak. Buddha’s birthday is also a celebration occurring at this time of year: in East Asia, on 8 May; in South and Southeast Asia, on 16 May. This is because East Asian communities tend to celebrate Buddha’s birth and enlightenment on separate days, while Southeast Asian communities tend to celebrate both birth and enlightenment on the same day, known as Vesak.
Although there is still a plethora of commentary surrounding the Russia-Ukraine war, this month’s edition of Tomorrow Matters selects just one issue to grapple with: the implications of Russia’s frozen reserves for Asia. This is followed by a vivid and vocal analysis on the recent slew of events in Pakistan – from the Karachi suicide bombing to the ousting of former Prime Minister Imran Khan – and how this relates to broader Eurasian integration. We then move to Sri Lanka, which is facing its own political challenges, with an article that provides a balanced view of the economic developments that contributed to the nation’s current crisis. The penultimate article looks at recent shifts in the judiciary system of Hong Kong, and asks if the colony will now move into an era without reliance on British judges. Finally, we close with an analysis on the trends in rice-growing in Southeast Asia, which as an essential commodity, is facing uncertainty amidst shifting environmental standards.
We hope you enjoy this month’s selection of some of the most interesting commentary from around the region.