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The effectiveness of China's coercion against Taiwan and Singapore-Taiwan relations with Ian Chong

  • 19 September, 2023
The Strait Up Podcast

Today I bring you a conversation with Ian Chong, associate professor at the National University of Singapore and Nonresident Scholar at Carnegie China, which is part of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington DC. Ian’s research has focused on topics such as the international relations of Northeast and Southeast Asia, and important for our discussion, Taiwan politics and cross-strait relations. 

Ian has done quite a bit of fascinating research which covers a lot of ground. Likewise, my conversation with him also covers quite a bit of ground, with a few too many topics to list upfront. In essence, the conversation can be broken into two main sections. 

The first half of our conversation focuses on an article titled “‘Stand up like a Taiwanese!’: PRC coercion and public preferences for resistance,” written by Ian and co-authors David W. F. Huang and Wen-Chin Wu at Academica Sinica. The article utilizes public opinion data to examine China’s economic coercion and military threats toward Taiwan and their effects on Taiwanese public opinion about how to deal with China. In other words, is the coercion having the effect that China presumably intends it to have?

In the second half of the conversation, we discussed several topics related to Singapore and its relationship with both Taiwan and China. This includes the ethnic, cultural, and historical connections between Taiwan and Singapore, Taiwan-Singapore military cooperation, whether Taiwan can become a financial hub in Asia, and how ethnically Chinese people in Singapore view modern-day China. 

As you can probably tell, this was a very wide-ranging conversation, so I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did. One production note, Ian was recording from abroad and there were some technical issues with the recording, so the audio quality is certainly less than ideal. I’ve done my best to clean it up a bit, but I hope that you won’t find it too distracting.