Friends & Partners

Jose Santiago “Chito” Sta. Romana: Veteran Journalist And China Analyst

 Chito Sta. Romana in Lhasa, capital of Tibel, in November 2006. At the background is the Potala Palace, the historic home of the Dalai Lama. Photo from Facebook.

Chito is a veteran journalist who lived and worked in China for more than three decades.

He is the former Beijing bureau chief for ABC News, the news division of the American Broadcasting Company. He has covered China as a producer and reporter for ABC News from 1989 until his retirement in 2010, reporting on major stories such as the Tiananmen protests & crackdown in 1989 and the crisis in US-China relations in 1999 and 2001. As a foreign journalist, he witnessed the economic rise of China and its transformation from a Third World country into a major global power.

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Profile: China Institutes for Contemporary International Relations

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China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations (CICIR) is a comprehensive research institution for international studies. It was officially established in 1980, and was renamed in 2003. The organization mainly focuses on international strategy, international politics and economy, global and regional security, and the political, economic, diplomatic and social issues of major powers. Presently, CICIR consists of 11 institutes, two research divisions, eight research centers and several administrative departments. It has a staff of 380, among whom 150 are professors and associate professors.

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The Initiative of Seven

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We have previously featured scholars and institutions we consider as having shared vision and advocacies as our organization, APPFI. In this issue, we would like to introduce seven young scholars who as graduate students of the University of the Philippines have been studying and conducting research on international relations with a special focus on China.

Having saved up for their airfare, on the 18th of December 2015, they flew from Manila and were welcomed by the bone-chilling December weather of Guangzhou. They attended a students’ forum at Jinan University where they talked about Philippines-China relations, and held a roundtable discussion with scholars and professors from Sun Yat Sen University where history, politics, and West Philippine Sea issues were discussed.

Some considered the trip a life changing experience as their prior knowledge of China had been based mainly on books and the Internet. Though some of them had visited before, they had done so as tourists without the intention of penetrating the Chinese cultural “Great Wall.” For this trip, they had every intention to dig deeper with the purpose of forging ties, attaining understanding, and at the same time, learning from their Chinese counterparts.

This edition of Friends and Partners shows us that no effort is too big or too small in our desire to improve ties with our Asian neighbours. Let us get to know the seven and their insights on their life-changing trip to China.

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Philippine Association for Chinese Studies

Since its establishment in 1987, the Philippine Association for Chinese Studies (PACS) has strived to promote knowledge exchange and facilitate contacts among scholars and professionals  who take an active interest in the study of China and the Chinese, Philippines-China relations, and the ethnic Chinese in the Philippines. Its activities include organizing seminars, holding national as well as international conferences, producing publications, and conducting study visits and dialogues. The organization has also partnered with other academic, professional, national and international organizations that share its interests, including the UP Asian Center, Ateneo de Manila’s Chinese Studies Program, World News Daily, KAISA Para sa Kaunlaran, the Philippine Social Science Council, and Asia Pacific Pathways to Progress Foundation, Inc.

Through the years, PACS has chalked up a track record of 38 academic events such as lecture-discussions and forums that focus on important issues. It has also produced 12 publications since 1990. Its most recent academic event was the book launch of The Rise of China: Three Essays on China’s Economy and Soft Power authored by Joseph Anthony Y. Lim, Ellen H. Palanca and Benito O. Lim. The book launch was followed by a lecture on China’s ‘New Silk Road Strategy’ and the West Philippine Sea by PACS President Chito Sta. Romana. Aside from Sta. Romana, Palanca, and Lim are also members of the association.

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© Institute of Philippine Culture
Chito Sta Romana's lecture on China's 'New Silk Road Strategy' and the West Philippine Sea last September 16, 2015

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