Mattis, in Seoul, says US can't accept nuclear North Korea -Nikkei

U.S. sends nuclear-capable B-2 stealth bomber on mission in Pacific ahead of Trump visit to Asia -The Japan Times

North Korea Rouses Neighbors to Reconsider Nuclear Weapons For the first time in recent memory, there is a daily argument raging in both South Korea and Japan — sometimes in public, more often in private — about the nuclear option -NYT


The Xi Factor Xi Jinping is now China’s most powerful leader since Mao Zedong, and he appears to be planning to rule just as long. As determined, ruthless, and clever as Xi is, can he maintain his grip should the economy stall, or his dream of returning China to a central place in world affairs fail? -Project Syndicate

The 7 Men Who Will Run China What you need to know about the members of the 19th Politburo Standing Committee. -The Diplomat

China's leadership changes: Who is Li Qiang, new party chief of Shanghai Mr Li Qiang, 58, has been named the party chief of Shanghai, replacing Mr Han Zheng, 63, who last week joined the apex Politburo Standing Committee (PSC). PSC is the top decision-making body in China. -The Straits Times

IF YOU’RE A CEO READ THIS >> Foreign firms watch out, Beijing may require you to leave China data in China The Cybersecurity Law will apply to any company dealing with China – and infringing it can get you fined, detained, or even imprisoned -SCMP


Can Asia handle parallel rise of strongmen in Japan and China? The Chinese and Japanese leaders both won major political victories this week – and their strengthened grips on power will only embolden their aggressive agendas -SCMP

Japan election results: latest news and analysis Japanese voters have given Prime Minister Shinzo Abe the fresh endorsement he wanted. The latest results from Sunday's lower house election show Abe's ruling coalition drubbed the Party of Hope, Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike's new party that was once thought to pose a serious challenge to the status quo. -Nikkei


In a nuclear crisis over North Korea, why ignore the South? As Trump, Xi Jinping and Shinzo Abe wring their hands over Kim Jong-un’s nuclear plans, South Korean leader Moon Jae-in gets the diplomatic cold shoulder known as ‘Korea passing’ – and it’s likely to get worse -SCMP


Taiwan president arrives in Hawaii despite Chinese objections Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen landed in Honolulu on Saturday en route to the island’s diplomatic allies among Pacific nations and set off for a visit to a Pearl Harbor memorial, despite strong objections to the visit from China. -Reuters

US bill aims to restore Taiwan’s WHA status On Sept. 28, the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs unanimously passed House Bill H.R.3320, which directs the US secretary of state to develop a strategy to regain observer status for Taiwan in the World Health Assembly (WHA). -Taipei Times


How South Korea and Australia Can Boost Naval Modernization in Southeast Asia South Korea and Australia could be attractive options for Southeast Asian states looking to boost naval capabilities. -The Diplomat

With Mattis in Manila, Duterte decides it’s time to boost ties with Russia and China -The Straits Times



THE LAST MILE MATTERS >> China's online shopping boom relies heavily on human labor Pay for delivery jobs is outstripping college grads' wages amid worker shortage -Nikkei

How Baidu, Alibaba, and Tencent plan to dominate Chinese online insurance -Tech-in-Asia

Insurers face risks in China: analysis Shin Kong Life Insurance posted a loss-to-investment ratio of 100 percent after losing all of its investment in its Chinese venture -Taipei Times

Japan Inc.'s safety failures point to deeper malaise A series of safety scandals at Japanese companies have put the country’s lionized factory floor under scrutiny as manufacturers struggle with increased pressure on costs, stricter enforcement of standards and growing competition. -Reuters

Japan’s biggest bank plans to slash branches 20 percent and trim payroll -The Japan Times

Apple hit with trademark lawsuit over iPhone X 'animoji' feature A Japanese software company is suing Apple in a US court over the trademark for the term "animoji", alleging the US technology company stole the name to use on a feature of its iPhone X. -The Straits Times

Kobe Steel sent products with tampered data to second nuclear company -Reuters

Kinmen nixes casino development Kinmen County residents yesterday voted against legalizing gambling in the outlying county. -Taipei Times

Line loses users across Southeast Asia -Tech-in-Asia

A War of Words Puts Facebook at the Center of Myanmar’s Rohingya Crisis So he has turned to an even more powerful and ubiquitous platform to get his message out — Facebook. -NYT


US finds China dumped aluminum foil on US market, imposes duties -The Straits Times

China hits back at ‘discriminatory’ US trade move ahead of Trump visit Beijing urges Americans to correct its ‘mistake’ after aluminium foil hit with anti-dumping duties -SCMP

New global financial architecture takes shape The declining influence of Western-dominated institutions such as the IMF and World Bank has led to the rise of regional alternatives like the AIIB. They will likely complement each other to provide global 'public goods'. -The Straits Times

Analysis: What President Xi Jinping’s new leadership team means for China’s economy Rather than bringing uncertainty, the Chinese president’s extraordinary rise and his unexpected but pragmatic political appointments pave the way for a shift in focus to market-oriented reform -SCMP

PODCAST OF THE WEEK >> Episode 212: Why China bans exchanges & ICOs with Neil Woodfine We discussed why the government of China has decided to ban cryptocurrency exchanges and ICOs and where it will go from there. -Analyse Asia

Rising US energy exports could prompt seismic shift in Asian market Middle East, Russia on defensive as cheaper fuel floods in -Nikkei

HOT AIR? >> U.S. gas exporters rush to sell LNG to China But the talk may all be hot air if the U.S. suppliers can’t compete with bargain prices agreed on long-term deals with rivals Australia, Qatar and Malaysia -Reuters