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AFA Monthly is a free email published each month by Australian Foreign Affairs.
Written and curated by editor Grant Wyeth, it features news and insights on crucial world events and their effect on Australia, in a style that’s clear, succinct and free of jargon.
It also offers a round-up of the month's key articles by leading foreign policy thinkers from Australia and around the world.
Read previous editions
14 April 2021
The new capitalism
Last week, the International Monetary Fund initiated a program to let poor countries swap debt for green investments and backed a “solidarity tax” on companies and individuals who have benefited from COVID-19.
In addition, the world financial watchdog expanded its reserves by US$650 billion and used a meeting with the World Bank to urge …
7 April 2021
Australia has commenced an international education overhaul, which could lead to big changes in the sector.
The number of foreign students admitted is likely to drop, their countries of origin may be different, and fewer students may be educated on Australian campuses. More teaching will be delivered online, and course offerings to foreign …
31 March 2021
Battle for Myanmar
On Sunday, defence force chiefs from Australia and eleven other countries issued a joint statement urging the Myanmar military to “cease violence and work to restore respect and credibility with the people of Myanmar”.
The chiefs were responding to the massacre of more than 100 people by Myanmar’s security forces on Saturday – the …
24 March 2021
Top officials of the Biden administration and the Chinese government met for the first time last week in Alaska. The talks started with an unusually acrimonious public exchange, which seemed to suggest the US–China relationship was entering a new phase of confrontation.
But the talks ended with officials making more positive comments, which …
17 March 2021
The Quad rises
The leaders of the countries belonging to the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue – United States, Japan, India and Australia – met for the first time last Saturday.
The Quad failed to get off the ground ten years ago, due to differences among its members, but it has taken much firmer shape over the past four years. Last week’s online meeting …
10 March 2021
China’s legislature, the National People’s Congress, began its annual meeting last week. Its discussion so far has underlined the competing images China now presents to the world.
Premier Li Keqiang announced a target of at least six per cent annual economic growth for the year. Li’s announcement signalled an unexpected return to China’s …
3 March 2021
Myanmar’s United Nations ambassador, Kyaw Moe Tun, has been sacked after publicly criticising the military coup that occurred in his country in February.
As the military violence against protesters intensified this week, the junta said Tun had spoken on behalf of an unofficial organisation that didn’t represent the country. Tun was appointed …
24 February 2021
Scott Morrison moved quickly last week to seek support from foreign leaders for Australia’s showdown with Facebook, which led to the tech giant banning news from its Australian platform.
Given the potential economic power a global technology platform can wield in a dispute – even with a relatively large economy, such as Australia – seeking …
17 February 2021
Modi faces revolt
For the past three months, farmers in India have been protesting against federal laws that will deregulate the country’s tightly controlled food markets. The farmers say the changes will leave them vulnerable to exploitation by large commodity companies.
The protests have taken on national and even international significance, because they …
10 February 2021
Divides over Myanmar
Last Friday, the leaders of Indonesia and Malaysia proposed a special meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to discuss the military takeover in Myanmar.
Normally, special meetings would be initiated by the ASEAN chair – currently Brunei – which can be slow to act, as members do not traditionally interfere in one another’s …
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