31.07.20 - 07.08.20 Sup SEAkers!
Strict, prolonged coronavirus lockdowns sent Philippines’ economy into recession, with government projecting 5.5% GDP contraction in 2020.
This Week's News Spotlight:
Cambodia’s modesty law | Malaysia’s Mahathir joins TikTok | The Covid-19 outbreak in Danang, Vietnam | Thailand widens medical marijuana production | Philippines enters a recession
Cambodia might ban shirtlessness and short skirts - SCMP
“It’s good to wear something no shorter than the middle of the thighs,” Ouk Kimlekh, an interior ministry secretary of state leading the drafting process, said.
Cambodian officials have drafted a legislation that, if approved, would ban men from going out shirtless and women from wearing anything “too short” or “too see through”.
The modesty law has been criticised for being a tool to “control and oppress women in the socially conservative country”. Chak Sopheap, executive director of the Cambodian Centre for Human Rights, noted that the government has been increasingly policing women’s bodies and clothing in recent months.
However, government representatives have defended the legislation, stating that it was “needed to preserve traditional culture”.
At 95, Mahathir creates TikTok account - The Star
Mahathir has even done the I’m Just A Kid challenge with his wife
Malaysia’s ex-Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has created a TikTok account; in his profile, he proclaims that he is “still young”.
He posted a video with his wife in which he did the “I’m Just A Kid” challenge. They posed for a picture, and then compared that to one they took when they were younger.
Mahathir is no stranger to social media, with 1.2 million followers on Twitter and 1.6 million followers on Instagram.
Origin of Vietnam’s Danang outbreak hard to track, authorities say - CNA
Danang is a popular tourist hotspot; up to 800,000 visitors have left for other parts of the country since 1 July.
In recent weeks, a new Covid-19 outbreak that originated in Danang has infected approximately 200 people. The total number of cases in the country has now risen to 620, and the death toll has increased to 5.
However, authorities are still struggling to identify the origin of the outbreak, which involved a new strain of the virus. The new strain is more contagious, and each infected person could infect five to six people.
Authorities plan to test Danang’s entire population of 1.1 million and have mobilised hundreds of military school students to aid with contact tracing and collecting test samples.
Thailand to widen medical marijuana production - Jakarta Post
Thailand has even removed cannabis extracts from its narcotics list and established medical marijuana clinics.
Thailand will now allow the “private production and sale of marijuana for medical use”, authorities said.
In 2017, Thailand was the first Southeast Asian nation to legalise marijuana for medical use and research, but only the government had been allowed to grow these plants. The new amendments “would also allow patients, businesses, and medical professionals to produce, export, import, and sell the leaf”.
Philippines enters recession - Nikkei Asian Review
The Philippines continues to struggle with Covid-19 cases.
The Philippines’ economy contracted by 16.5% in the second quarter of 2020, which is a larger drop than the 9.0% forecasted by Reuters.
The country has the second-highest number of Covid-19 cases in Southeast Asia, and continues to struggle with cases every day despite stricter lockdown measures than its neighbours.
In April, the unemployment rate reached an all-time high of 17.7%, which is equivalent to 7.3 million people without jobs.