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Peter McCawley

Former Dean, Asian Development Bank Institute, Tokyo

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Australia’s A$1.5 billion COVID-related loan to Indonesia

The Australian Government has unexpectedly announced that Australia will make a $ 1.5 billion COVID-related support loan to Indonesia. Australia’s assistance program to Indonesia has lagged somewhat in recent years. Indeed, the fall in support to Indonesia had begun to attract comment. But in one stroke, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s announcement late last week significantly strengthened Australia’s economic diplomacy in Southeast Asia, writes Peter McCawley.

Coronavirus: The Siren Song of Protectionism

When the coronavirus pandemic passes, Asia is set to continue its great long boom. Building on the theme of the recent Asialink Business ‘Winning in Asia’ report, respected economist Peter McCawley argues Australian government and business needs to more deeply engage with Asia’s growing regionalism, avoid a post-pandemic temptation to isolate, and embrace greater openness to two-way capital flows, to technology, and to international knowledge.