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Countering China's rising influence

In some of South-east Asia's largest democracies, citizens have started to become acutely aware of the risk of China using money politics to curry favour with local elites.

Beijing has offered constant assurances to its neighbours it will not resort to military force to back its claims even though it has continued to expand its territory by building a series of artificial islands in the South China Sea.

EARLIER this month, at the US-ASEAN Ministerial Meeting in Singapore, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced a commitment for US government investments in the region. Touted under the grandiloquent name of America's Indo-Pacific Economic Vision, it is the economic pillar of a larger...