China’s Vaccine Diplomacy in Malaysia: Problems and Prospects
REGIONAL SOCIAL AND CULTURAL STUDIES PROGRAMME WEBINAR
About the Webinar
China’s vaccine diplomacy in Malaysia has been hampered by concerns over its’ vaccine relative effectiveness. In July, Sinovac was removed from Malaysia mainstream inoculation program. Beijing’s campaign also faces competition from the United States and Japan who have stepped up their vaccine donations to Malaysia.
This webinar seeks to throw some light on such problems and prospects of China’s vaccine diplomacy in Malaysia and how despite setbacks, China’s vaccine diplomacy may have two redeeming features. The first pertains to the prevailing criticism of the developed countries less than equitable vaccine distribution. By contrast, notwithstanding its lower efficacy, China continues to make its vaccines more accessible, ensuring fairer distribution to the developing world. Second, aside from the one-off donation, America’s longer-term commitment to aid countries like Malaysia to contain the pandemic remains unclear. By comparison, China’s current campaign could be seen as part of Beijing’s broader strategy to strengthen global public health governance via the Health Silk Road Initiative.
This webinar is supported by Konrad Adenauer Stiftung.
About the Speaker
Dr Peter T.C. Chang is trained in the field of comparative philosophy and religion. Dr Chang’s current research looks at how a rejuvenated Confucianism could shape the evolving character of the Chinese milieu and in turn impact the global community. Based at the Institute of China Studies, University of Malaya, Dr Chang is also analyzing the opportunities and risks associated with the Belt and Road Initiative. He is examining this from the perspective of China’s soft power, specifically the Chinese traditional as well as popular cultural imprints upon the world at large in general, and Malaysia in particular.
About the Discussant
Dr Lee Hwok Aun is a Senior Fellow with the Malaysia Studies Programme and Regional Economic Studies Programme at ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute. He was previously Senior Lecturer in development studies at the University of Malaya. He authored Affirmative Action in Malaysia and South Africa: Preference for Parity (Routledge, 2021), co-edited The Defeat of Barisan Nasional: Missed Signs or Late Surge? (ISEAS, 2019) and has written various ISEAS Perspective and Trends articles on Malaysia’s affirmative action, inequality, education and labour. He led an unprecedented field experiment on hiring discrimination, published as “Discrimination of high degrees: Race and graduate hiring in Malaysia” (Journal of the Asia-Pacific Economy, 2016).
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