[MA] China continues SEA charm offensive

[The Straits Time] On Monday night, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang stopped by a small shop in Ha Noi. The shop, which was about to close for the night, stayed open for its VIP customer.

As Li bought some tea, he asked the shop owner not to give him a discount and said that “we are making a fair trade”.

The exchange, which the Chinese state media highlighted with several photos of an affable-looking Li in the shop, gave a sideways glimpse of China’s latest efforts to soften its image and win over its neighbours anew.

In recent years, the region has grown leery of the country’s assertiveness and territorial ambitions, particularly in the resource-rich South China Sea – a sentiment which Beijing has tried to soothe in the past two weeks. Continue reading “[MA] China continues SEA charm offensive”