Why It Matters

Every day on Page 2 of The Straits Times, reporters write about why certain news reports matter to readers. This is a weekly round-up of the columns.

Indochina bureau chief Nirmal Ghosh said that taking power on April 1 is only the first step of a long climb for Myanmar's National League for Democracy (NLD). The NLD will have to prove its maiden 18-member Cabinet is up to the task of running the country, and balance both internal and external pressure. http://str.sg/ZtzD

US President Barack Obama's visit to Cuba marks a historic rapprochement between the two North American countries. But China, which has spent years building its influence in the socialist stronghold of Cuba, is nettled, US bureau chief Jeremy Au Yong noted. Cuba could become the latest arena of competition for the two world powers. http://str.sg/ZtEs

Ahead of the Budget speech, deputy business editor Aaron Low gazed into his crystal ball and predicted that Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat's maiden Budget speech would do little to address Singaporean concerns over job security. He added that what bears closer watching is the structural unemployment that may creep up as the economy restructures. http://str.sg/Zt8Q

Associate editor (global affairs) Ravi Velloor noted the dispute in the South China Sea has become a bit more vexed. Jakarta summoned China's envoy to protest against a Chinese coast guard vessel's harassment of Indonesian boats attempting to corral a fishing vessel poaching in waters off the Natunas. Read his analysis of what this says about China's objectives at http://str.sg/ZtnG.

In response to the threat posed by terror group Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, Singapore has upgraded its counter-terrorsim measures. Assistant news editor Royston Sim said the new measures to harden vigilance, speed up security response and involve the community are timely and necessary. http://str.sg/ZtdU

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 26, 2016, with the headline 'Why It Matters'. Print Edition | Subscribe