ST forum looks at how Asia can chart its path ahead amid pandemic, post-US elections

The Straits Times Global Outlook Forum 2021 will be held online on Jan 11. PHOTO: ST

SINGAPORE - The Covid-19 pandemic, a new president of the United States and changing power relations in the region are among the sea of changes to happen this year, affecting life as we know it.

The pandemic, in particular, has changed how we live, introducing concepts such as social distancing and increasing the use of technology at work.

The world is also set to feel the ripples emitted in a change of administration in its largest economy, raising the question of how trade tensions between US and China will play out in the new year.

Shining a spotlight on these prominent topics is The Straits Times Global Outlook Forum held online on Jan 11.

Titled "Asia and Asean: The Way Forward?", the annual conference is organised by The Straits Times in partnership with presenting sponsor OCBC Premier Banking.

The keynote speaker will be Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat, who is also Finance Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies.

Mr Heng will also be taking questions from audience members in a 45-minute live segment moderated by Mr Warren Fernandez, editor-in-chief of Singapore Press Holdings' English/Malay/Tamil Media Group and ST editor.

A panel discussion moderated by the ST's US bureau chief Nirmal Ghosh, who is based in Washington, follows the question-and-answer segment.

Mr Ghosh took up his assignment in Washington in 2016 and hosts the paper's ST Asian Insider video series that showcases an Asian perspective on global talking points of the week.

Participants include OCBC treasury research and strategy head Selena Ling, who is also a member of the OCBC Wealth Panel, ST associate editor Ravi Velloor, ST China bureau chief Tan Dawn Wei, and Caixin Media deputy managing editor Huang Shan.

Caixin Media runs China business and financial news outlets, and Caixin Weekly, among other publications.

Previous titles of the one-day annual forum include The Road Ahead: Life After Brexit For Britain And The EU in 2016 and 2017's Facing The Challenges Of A New World Order after the US elected Mr Donald Trump to be its president.

In 2019, the title then was "Navigating A World In Conflict", which discussed the growing trade tensions between US and China, the diplomatic spat between Japan and South Korea over wartime labour and the conflict between Pakistan and India over Kashmir.

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