sOUTH kOREAN Gov't waives viability tests for big projects to promote balanced development
Economic viability tests are conducted on projects that get more than about 26 million U.S. dollars in government funds, but the South Korean government will waive the assessments on select projects in the interest of helping less developed regions of the country catch up.
The projects that the government will be waiving the test on are focused on two things: improving traffic and logistics networks across the country and nurturing regional industries.
Myanmar's parliament has approved a proposal for the establishment of a committee to draw up amendments to the country's constitution, which currently gives strong political power to the military.
The ruling National League for Democracy, led by Myanmar's de-facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi, submitted the proposal on Tuesday. Party members say the current constitutional framework makes it difficult for the party to pursue its policy agenda.
The proposal was cleared with majority support, but met with strong opposition from military lawmakers.
The results of the referendum on the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) was announced on January 25, 2018. Voters, who were expected the the proposal for an expanded Muslim-led region, delivered a convincing result of about 1.7 million in favor and some 254,600 against, according to official results from the Philippines elections commission.
Happy over the overwhelming support of the people, Moro Islamic Liberation Front* (MILF) rebel leader Murad Ebrahim told AFP news agency that "It was a landslide. There's been nothing like this."
With the passing of this law, citizens hope that it will bring a measure of peace after decades of fighting in the region has killed thousands and mired the area in poverty.
East Timor’s president has vetoed the government’s budget, possibly jeopardizing plans to develop the Greater Sunrise oil and gas field, seen by leading East Timorese politicians as crucial to the impoverished country’s future
The turnout of the plebiscite on the Bangsamoro Organic Law could make or break the decades-old peace process between the Philippines' national government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (the Front), which started out as a secessionist armed movement in the southern island of Mindanao in the late 1970s.
If the "yes" vote wins, Bangsamoro - which means "Moro" nation - will replace the existing Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), which has been criticized as merely nominal and failed to end the violent conflict that has left at least 120,000 people dead over the last five decades.
On paper, the proposed new Moro nation will be a more powerful and possibly larger political unit than the ARMM. It will have its own parliament, some exclusive powers previously held by the government in Manila, and a significantly larger share of local revenues. Above all, it will also mean the end of the Front's armed struggle, with the decommissioning of its 35,000 troops and its leaders taking positions in the new civilian government.
GOV'T SURVEILLANCE, DATA GOVERNANCE, AND SOVEREIGNTY TO DOMINATE INDIA'S TECH POLICY
Dissenting opinions between two camps dominated Malaysia's Governance, Integrity and Anti-Corruption Centre’s recent general assembly. The verbal conflict finds its roots in the matter of the country’s laws on public procurement. On one hand, one party believes that the Malaysian government should continue to support division leaders in granting contracts as they are vital to sustain grassroots support (for the current ruling party). On the other hand, the other camp heavily disagrees – labeling this practice as “politics of patronage”. The latter argues that government contracts should always go through open tenders.