Latest news, in-depth features and opinion on Malaysia, covering politics, economy, society and the Asean member-nation’s relationships with China, Singapore, and other Southeast Asian countries.

Sorry, it’s too $$$, Malaysia tells China
Southeast Asian economic powerhouse Malaysia has a strategic location astride one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes. It was once an enthusiastic supporter of Chinese investment, signing tens of billions of dollars worth of deals with Beijing. But a stunning election upset in May changed all that. The pro-Beijing incumbent, Najib Razak, who was tainted by a mega corruption scandal, was out. Former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, 93, was back in. Mahathir, who came out of retirement to contest the top job, immediately began to question the $22 billion worth of infrastructure deals with Chinese companies endorsed by his predecessor. And as he wrapped up a five-day visit to Beijing on Tuesd
Feeding the hungry ghosts
When spirits come to your neighbourhood, you’d better serve up your best. Ethnic Chinese Malaysians celebrated Hungry Ghost month in Malaysia’s capital of Kuala Lumpur on Sunday. The tradition is associated with Buddhism and Taoism, and commonly practiced in Asian countries including China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan and Indonesia. Legend has it that the gates to the underworld open once a year, and ghosts return to the land of the living in search of food. Ghosts of memories Gene Lin, Inkstone My family frequently observed the Hungry Ghost Festival — also known as the “Zhongyuan” Festival — when I was growing up in Taiwan. Each August, my grandmother would put up an altar of delicious food for ou
Malaysian cops are buying into Chinese facial recognition tech
The all-seeing eye of Chinese surveillance is going international. Malaysian police have been equipping its officers with body-mounted cameras which use Chinese facial recognition technology to identify suspects. The cameras use cutting-edge facial recognition capabilities designed by the Chinese artificial intelligence start-up Yitu Technology.    The system enables officers to compare and match images captured by the body camera with those stored in the police database. “This is a significant step forward for us as we leverage artificial intelligence to increase public safety and security. Looking ahead, [the Malaysian police] also intends to expand the capabilities of our body-worn camer