Blog: East Asia

Title: Large, Troubled Companies Got Bailout Money in Small-Business Loan Program


Due to the coronavirus, tons and ton of businesses are losing tens of millions of dollars as they aren't getting any customers and most businesses closed down. The US government set up a loan program that has recently been giving businesses large amounts of cash. Its said the loan was originally meant for businesses that couldn't finance themselves but is now used being used improperly. The money has been improperly placed, isn't being repaid, or is continuously being given to the companies without being repaid first. Now they are making attempts in fixing the problem with little to no consequences. Businesses are a huge part of the US's economy, the US is also one of the wealthiest countries even if it in debt

South East Asia Blog
“In Mongolia, using new science to preserve traditional lifestyles'
Henry Wilkins
This article talks about the decline in health of Mongolia’s steppe and grasslands, due to
overgrazing and other climate concerns. In Mongolia, the steppe is inhabited by nomadic
herders, raising livestock like goats and yak. Goats are especially damaging to the grasslands
as they eat the roots of the grass as well. Science and determination are starting to show
promise though as different groups around the world work on solving this issue. Wilkins talks
about the rise in urbanization of these nomadic herders, due to the lack of sustainability within
the grasslands currently, with masses of Mongolians moving to Ulaanbaatar and living around
the outskirts in their “gers'. These “ger districts' lack sanitary conditions, room in schools, and
basic utilities. This rise in urbanization is not only an issue for these new city residents, but for
the Mongolian government, as coal pollution rises, and the ger districts conditions get worse.
There is hope though as Wilkins writres, “With some help from schemes supported by the UN
Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), The Swiss Development Agency and the Global
Agenda for Sustainable Livestock, groups of herders are attempting to show how proper
management of the grassland can stop the degradation.' He also highlights other things like a
businessman who only buys yak for cashmere since they are less harmful to the grasslands
than goats. Proper grazing and livestock management could help the steppe recover in around
ten years as one group predicts, but the scene is still unfolding as more are still moving to the
city, and nomadic herders gain the same modern technology we all have.

COVID-19 in Southeast Asia: outbreak delayed but developing


This article focuses on South East Asia, and it’s geographical and economical impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought to the region. It stresses that areas such as the Philippines, Thailand and Malaysia Are less prepared strategically to handle the outbreak, compared to other countries. Being that some of these areas are so densely populated, makes it very difficult to control the spread of the virus. This article also addresses the economical impact that Covid 19 has brought to the region, Especially the tourism industry which many rely heavily on for income. Hopefully the curve will flatten for them in the economic tool will not be as bad as predicted, but only time will tell.

Sea Turtles thriving in Thailand after beach closures

Researchers have found a very high number of sea turtles on the beaches in south Thailand, the highest in over 20 years. Phuket is Thailands most popular resort island, however many resorts have been put on strict lockdown from the coronavirus outbreak. This has a positive impact on marine wildlife, not just turtles, but many species are now gone up in numbers, which shows a large impact on marine conservation, and not just in Thailand, but all over the world. It takes about 60 days for sea turtle eggs to hatch and since Thailand has had strict lock downs since early march, there is now a huge number of healthy sea turtle hatchlings on the local beaches. This is due to not only lack of people on the beaches, but also because of less plastic waste and little to no artificial light, which can cause baby sea turtles to become disoriented, example would be night time beach lights, headlights from vehicles driving along shore, or peoples phone cameras. Some of the geographical aspects in this article are Thailand, which is a country in South East Asia. South Thailand where the coast line is along the Gulf of Thailand. The beach in south Thailand, which is now home to many hatchling sea turtles thriving.

Hong Kong to extend coronavirus-related restrictions by 14 days

From March 29th to April 23rd, Hong Kong restricted public gatherings to only up to four people, closed all entertainment venues, and suspended all foreign travel indefinitely. Now, even though they have recently stated that as of the 20th, no new cases of coronavirus had occurred, the city is extending these restrictions for another 14 days to be as safe as they can be. However, this is drawing criticism as these laws greatly limit personal freedom in a city where just last year, protests were raging about that very thing. Just last week, Luo Huining, the senior mainland political official, said that a more national security laws should be implemented.

Hong Kong is technically a part of Beijing, but maintains a high degree of autonomy as a state, and it has been that way since 1997. In 2003, Beijing attempted to implement similar security laws to the ones recommended by Huining, and was met with mass protests in Hong Kong that ensured it never occurred. Currently, the restrictions are in place to curb the spread of COVID-19 within the high population density of Hong Kong, but there are fears that the restrictions set a precedent for more control over individual citizens. As the protests for democracy in Hong Kong last year occurred, those issues have not been resolved and the restrictions have prevented activists from organizing.

5,000-year-old milk proteins point to the importance of dairying in eastern Eurasia

Related journal article:


In summary, the article talks about how researchers in collaboration with the National University of Mongolia, analyzed dental calculus from "individuals ranging from the Early Bronze Age to the Mongol Period... the study's results include the earliest direct evidence for dairy consumption in East Asia."

"Although dairy-based pastoralism has been an essential part of life and culture in the eastern Eurasian Steppe for millennia, the eastward spread of dairying from its origin in southwest Asia and the development of these practices is little understood."

Here is an excerpt from the article. "'In order to form a clearer picture of the origins of dairying in this region, we need to understand the impact of western steppe herder migrations and confirm whether dairying was occurring in Mongolia prior to their arrival,' Shevan Wilkin concludes."

The article is talking about the essentiality of the crucial renewable calories and hydration of dairying across the arid and agriculturally challenging ancient Eastern Steppe.


A few months ago Singapore had a model example for dealing with Covid-19, but it recently had a mass outbreak.


So what went wrong?


Well to understand this, it would first help to look at what it did right. It cracked down immediately on travel - specifically outside contact. it being an island helped out quite a lot.  


The biggest issue was the overlooked migrant workers and an underestimation of how infectious the disease was. The place where the migrant workers were being kept were dormitories as well, which meant they were being kept at close quarters with one another. Unfortunately that mean now that Singapore is caught between a rock and a hard place, meaning that they have to start implementing new policies - with harsh punishments in order to put a clamp on the new wave before it catches too far off the ground.

It's pretty hard to find a story that doesn't involve the corona virus, but I found this article about Wuhan to be both relevant and interesting. The article is titled "Coronavirus: China outbreak city Wuhan raises death toll by 50%". The article talks exclusively about how the virus is affecting Wuhan, the ninth most populous city in China. Wuhan is located in the Hubei province which has a current total death toll of 3,869 due to COVID-19. The article also discusses how China has recently lifted its strict lockdown of Wuhan. I like that the article talks about China's response to the accusation of their government covering up the actual death toll. There is not much basis in that claim. Near the end of the article, it talks about how the virus has affected China-US relations and some of the ways president Trump has responded. Overall, I found the information in this article to be informative and interesting. Thanks for reading.

Since January of last year, troops from the Philippines have been trailing and trying to track down Islamic state leader Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan. While patrolling in Patikul, Philippine troops came in contact with 40 heavily armed Abu Sayyaf militants which caused an hour long firefight. This firefight resulted in 11 of the Philippine troops to be killed in action. It is unknown if Mr. Sawadjaan was with the militants during the firefight, but General Arevalo stated that the search for him will go on even during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Some geographical concepts to note is that this happened in the Philippines which is in Southeast Asia. Patikul, where the troops patrolled, is a jungle-dense island in the extreme southern province of Sulu. Sulu is one of the islands that make up the Sulu Archipelago and it is surrounded by the Sulu Sea and Celebes Sea. Abu Sayyaf is an extremist group that pledges their allegiance to the Islamic state (ISIS).

Wuhan lockdown: How people are still getting food

Justin Harper


This article was based around the challenge of people getting food in Wuhan China while being restricted to their homes. The main issue was that people were not wanting to come into contact with food delivery drivers as this was one of the common methods to replenish food supplies. The article discussed technological advances where consumers could request the driver to drop off the food and leave or could even discuss special locations to drop food off through the use of an app. One problem that did not cross my mind was how the doctors, nurses, and medical staff at hospitals were going to eat. This article mentions that one delivery company was delivering 1000 free meals daily to the hospitals.


The clear concept of this article was medical geography. The focus was surrounding the city of Wuhan and the pandemic of COVID-19.