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Journal of International Studies (JIS) Vol. 8, 2012

 
China’s Rise in Latin America
Ana Lucía Salinas de Dosch & Jörn Dosch
 
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
In November 2004 Chinese President Hu Jintao’s first tour of Latin America marked the beginning of a new phase in Beijing’s relationship with the region. Since then China has followed a three-fold political and economic strategy towards Latin America: first, to secure the provision of oil, minerals and agricultural products; second, to create access to new markets for the country’s growing export volume of manufactured products; and third to make sure that Latin American governments adhere to the ‘one China principle’ in their foreign relations. This is of particular importance vis-à-vis Latin America where China had previously lost diplomatic ground when some states officially recognised Taiwan. The article asks as to whether and what extent China and Latin America countries have become economic and strategic partners. Do Latin American governments play the China card to hedge against Washington? Special emphasis is given to the case of Ecuador which exemplifies the PRC’s growing prominence as an actor in Latin America. When Chinese foreign policy makers began to show some interest in Latin America during the early 1960s Ecuador was not a priority. However, the PRC has significantly strengthened its interests towards, and presence in, Ecuador since 2005. The provision of oil but also metals – primarily copper and cold - and increasingly agricultural products has taken centre-stage in Beijing’s strategy towards the Andean country. The article argues that while China’s influence in Latin America has undoubtedly increased significantly during the last half-decade, its role is still overshadowed by the US.
 
Keywords: China, Latin America, Ecuador, United States, Beijing Consensus, oil, minerals.
 

 
The United States: Still a Global Hegemonic Power?
Hang Nguyen Thi Thuy
 
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
This article argues that U.S. hegemony has not declined since the end of the Cold War as claimed in much of the international relations literature. On the contrary the post Cold War international political landscape is still characterized by unipolarity in which the U.S. is the sole superpower. However what is questionable is how long the U.S. can sustain its global hegemonic power. The paper begins by discussing how hegemony has been defined. Then, while arguing that the alleged decline of U.S. hegemony by the declinists is too simplistic, the article underlines research that brings the present preponderance of U.S. power in the global politics into question. The article further describes U.S. unprecedented capabilities and its leadership in the security and economic frameworks that have constituted the foundation for the international order to provide empirical evidence to support the assertion that the U.S. remains a global hegemon.
 
Keywords: United States, super power, neo-Gramscian, hegemony, declinists, primacist.
 

 
Comparative Study on Copyright Exception for Teaching Purposes: Australia, Malaysia and the United Kingdom
Ratnaria Wahid & Ida Madieha Abdul Ghani Azmi
 
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
While education is considered a basic human right, the copyright system however seems to hamper public access to information and knowledge. This is especially so when information that largely comes from developed countries are used as commodities that have to be bought by developing countries. This paper compares the international and national laws in Malaysia, United Kingdom and Australia on the copyright exceptions to materials used for teaching purposes. It analyzes the different ways countries manage and balance between copyright owners and copyright users’ interest and shows that in many circumstances, copyright owners are over-protected by national copyright systems although this is not required by international copyright law. This paper also shows that international treaties governing copyright law do allow some flexibility for member countries to implement copyright systems based on their own needs and circumstances but such opportunity is not fully utilized by member countries for the benefit of the public.
 
Keywords: International copyright law, education, United Kingdom, Australia, Malaysia.
 

 
Navigational Hazards in International Maritime Chokepoints: A Study of the Straits of Malacca and Singapore
Mohd Hazmi Mohd Rusli
 
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
The Straits of Malacca and Singapore are two of the world’s most significant international maritime chokepoints. The number of ships transiting the Straits of Malacca and Singapore has increased gradually and significantly over the period of 10 years since 2000. This scenario has enhanced the likelihood of the occurrence of maritime accidents in these Straits. This is further aggravated by the fact that the Straits themselves have many navigational hazards which may make navigation difficult. The navigational hazards in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore that could potentially endanger mariners and the adverse environmental impacts arising from a maritime accident are discussed in this paper. The remedies available to the littoral States of Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore under the International law are identified for enhancing safe navigation. As an important shipping way for oil transportation, the Straits of Malacca and Singapore have to remain open for international shipping as the closure of the Straits would be detrimental to the global economy.
 
Keywords: Law of the Sea, Straits of Malacca and Singapore, co-operative mechanism, navigational hazards, shipping.
 

 
The Asean Way and Haze Mitigation Efforts
Helena Muhamad Varkkey
 
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
Transboundary haze pollution is an almost annual occurrence in Southeast Asia. Haze originates from peat and forest fires mostly in Indonesia, with Malaysia and Singapore suffering the worst of its effects. Most of these fires are manmade, and linked to land clearing activities of local and foreign commercial oil palm plantations. The regional nature of haze has concentrated mitigation activities at the ASEAN level. However these initiatives continually fail to effectively mitigate haze. This article argues that haze mitigation has been problematic due to the ASEAN style of regional engagement, which prioritizes the maintenance of national sovereignty. States are compelled to act in their national interests, as opposed to the collective regional interests. The economic importance of the oil palm sector to the states involved, coupled with traditionally close relationships between key economic actors and political elites, meant that the maintenance of the status quo, where major plantation companies could continue to clear land using the cost-effective method of burning, was of crucial national interest. Therefore, the ASEAN style of regional engagement has enabled member states to shape ASEAN initiatives to preserve the interests of these political and economic elite, while the public continue to suffer the haze.
 
Keywords: Transboundary, haze pollution, environmental issues, ASEAN-way mitigation efforts.
 

 
Trends and Regional Patterns of Cross-Border Mergers and Acquisitions:A Case of Malaysian and Indonesian Acquirers
Mohd Haniff Jedin
 
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
Progress of cross-border mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in Asian region demonstrates an upstream pattern although the economy in Europe is unhealthy. In fact, many cross-border deals in Europe are dominated by Asian and US acquirers. In 2010, Asia Pacific countries had completed over 8,300 M&A deals that involved an Asian company reported by Dealogic. Countries such as China, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand are among Asian countries that are active in cross-border M&A. However, M&A trends in Malaysia and Indonesia have not received due attention of the researchers. Present study attempts to explore this phenomenon with the specific idea of identifying the background of Malaysian and Indonesian industries that involved in cross-border M&A. Present paper also reveals the integration trends involved when engaging in cross-border M&A. An opinion survey was conducted of the firms involved in M&A deals; the companies were identified from the Thomson One Banker main database which covers cross border M&A cases completed in Malaysian and Indonesia. Results show that engineering, software and telecommunication industries are among the leading industries engaged in cross-border M&A. Results also reflect that in terms of nationality of the acquired firms, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore are among favourites to Malaysian and Indonesian acquirers. The study highlights higher success compared to failures in cross-border M&A in the countries under reference.
 
Keywords: Cross-border mergers and acquisitions, management styles, marketing integration.
 

 
A Muslim Contribution to International Relations Theory: Aman (Peaceful Co-Existence and Mutual Respect) Theory
Abd al-Fattah M. El-Awaisi
 
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
In the last ten years, the world has witnessed much debate on new forms of the global phenomena of fundamentalism and extremism. It is clear that many view Muslims as “the other” or outsider and vice-versa; an attitude of “us and them”, “our community and their community”. The concept of a ‘clash of civilisations’ has become part of our everyday vocabulary. The objective of this article is namely to develop the theory of Aman (peaceful co-existence and mutual respect) as a Muslim contribution to normative considerations in international relations theory. It is found that the main four components of this theory are: the methodology of Tadafu’ (counteraction), the concept of Adil (justice), the principle of not excluding others, and the constructive argumentation methodology. The theory has been tested and implemented by examining, in particular, Umar Assurance of Aman and the negotiations between Salah al-Din and King Richard I ‘the Lionheart’ of England over Islamicjerusalem in 1191. It is hoped that this theory could help place Muslim contributions in the epitome of global discourse of international relations theory, set the scene to advance the current research on the Muslim contributions to international relations theory including peace study and conflict resolution, and open up and promote intellectual and academic debate and understanding of this Muslim contributions to shed light on new lines of explanation. Although Islamicjerusalem is the most delicate issue of dispute between the current two conflicting parties, it is hoped that this theory will provide a better understanding for the world leaders who are trying to return peace to the region.
 
Keywords: Muslim contributions, Islam, aman theory, international relations theory, conflict resolutions, peace models, peaceful co-existence, mutual respect, multiculturalism.
 

 
Terrorism in Central Asia: Security Implications for Russia
Debendra Mahalik
 
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
End of the cold war following the disintegration of the Soviet Union witnessed unprecedented increase in militancy and terrorism prompted by internal and external forces. This was also fuelled by factors like religious fundamentalism and ethno-nationalist chauvinism. The newly independent countries of the Central Asian region encountered myriad problems like terrorism, drug trafficking, arms trafficking, organized crime, separatism, and ethnic conflicts. Given the geographical proximity and historicity, Central Asia is regarded as Russia’s own backyard and a “soft underbelly”. The near-abroad security developments in the Central Asian republics have great influence on Russia and could create a complex environment detrimental to its security interests. The Russian approach to this challenge is of great importance for the stability of the whole area. Any negative developments in Central Asian Regions and Afghanistan would have serious security implications for Russia. A stable and friendly government in Afghanistan and Central Asian states would prove beneficial to Russian security, including the on ongoing separatist movements in Chechnya and Dagestan. Therefore it is imperative that Russia and Central Asian states act collectively to counter religious radicalism and foster regional stability. This article examines some factors responsible for breeding terrorism and religious extremism in Central Asian Republics and its security implications onRussia such as Central Asian threats, US presence in Central Asia and the Taliban in Afghanistan.
 
Keywords:Terrorism, religious extremism, security, Central Asia, Russia, Afghanistan, Chechnya.
 

 
UGANDA: A Country Profile
Ahmad Masum
 
Introduction Ɩ Full Text
Uganda lies in the heart of Sub-Saharan Africa. It is situated in East Africa and occupies an area of 241,038 sq km (roughly twice the size of the state of Pennsylvania) and its population is about 35,873,253 (CIA World Factbook, 2012). Uganda is bordered by Tanzania and Rwanda to the south, Democratic Republic of Congo to the west, South Sudan to the north, and Kenya to the east. Uganda is a landlocked country and occupies most of the Lake Victoria Basin, which was formed by the geological shifts that created the Rift Valley during the Pleistocene era. Uganda was a British colony and became an independent- sovereign nation in 1962 without a bloody struggle. Several ethnic groups reside in the country i.e. Baganda, Banyankole, Bahima, Bakiga, Bunyoro, Batoro, Basoga, Bagisu, Langi, Acholi, Lugbara, Karamojong and others. English is the official language by virtue of Article 6(1) of the 1995 Constitution and Swahili is also widely spoken especially in the urban areas. Uganda has no State religion. As a country, Uganda has witnessed some positive development in the area of security. The government managed to plant the seeds of peace in the north by defeating the Lord Resistance Army (LRA) led by Joseph Kony.