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Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong speaks at the International Symposium by CCIEE-Brookings-LKYSPP at The St Regis Singapore hotel on October 30, 2019.

Asia can be voice of moderation, forge common cause despite US-China tensions:

SINGAPORE (The Straits Times/ANN) -- ESM Goh said China is pulling ahead in 5G technology and artificial intelligence, and the US has been considering economic and technological measures to slow China down.
The best way to prevent further US-China conflict is for Asia to build up trust within itself, forge a common cause and be a voice of moderation, said Emeritus Senior Minister (ESM) Goh Chok Tong on Wednesday (October 30). Stressing that he was not calling for “Asia First” or an Asia only for Asians, he said Asia must be part of the world, and countries outside of Asia that have a stake in the region, such as the US, must continue to be deeply engaged with it.
Asia needs to band more closely together before it can begin to urge both China and the US to find their common cause. If it can do so, it will remove much of the suspicion of China’s long-term intentions as a global power, he added.
ESM Goh was speaking on the theme “US and China: Forging a Common Cause for the Development of Asia and the World” at a symposium jointly organised by Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, the United States’ Brookings Institution and China Centre for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE).
Addressing about 100 business leaders and officials at The St Regis Singapore hotel, he observed how far China had come since his first visit to the country in 1971, when the country was poor and in the throes of the Cultural Revolution.
It had lifted more than 850 million people from poverty in a single generation, “a feat unparalleled in history”, he said. But as Dr Bruce Jones, a fellow speaker and foreign policy director at the Brookings Institution, explained, the election of US President Donald Trump in 2016 and the power expansion of Chinese President Xi Jinping at the 19th Party Congress a year later, had set the stage for a realignment in the relationship between the two giants.

(Latest Update November 1, 2019)

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