Republic of East Asia
"Free economy encourages growth, but government control of the financial sector is necessary to avoid mistakes made by capitalist countries. For example, look at Japan's major recession during the 20th century."
The Republic of East Asia
The Republic of East Asia includes several former Soviet states, mainland China, India, Sri Lanka, North Korea, and most member states of today's Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Operating as a collective of loosely affiliated socialist states with limited entry to markets and a heavy authoritarian bent, the Republic of East Asia produces most of the world's food.
For the most part, the REA is content to exist in its present state and not tamper with the balance of power in the world… too much, right now. That said, the REA's occasional efforts at advancing its place have made it the subject of numerous conspiracy theories -- that it, rather than the Union, operates most Federation Newtype labs; that it held the real reins of power within the Titans; that it has positioned spies or agents of influence in every power bloc; that it knew about the existence of Newtypes before even Zeon and has been performing quantum brainwave research since 0050... the list goes on and on. The REA has never once dignified these with public response.
In the Republic of East Asia, the populace is substantially on board with the authoritarian bent of most of its member nations, because the actual living situation isn't that bad. As the Earth Sphere's largest food supplier, the Republic of East Asia is relatively wealthy, and provides its people a high quality of life.
REA citizens are apathetic about participation in politics, and not terribly concerned with international squabbles. Engagement is low, overall. Protests do occur, but they are usually small enough that despite being relatively authoritarian, the REA elects to let protesters do as they will as long as they commit no violence. Sometimes people who get too outspoken develop Zaftran window disease, or attract the unique misfortune of a shuttle crash.
The REA is very committed to the war with the PLANTs, but its military investment is mostly domestic and ground-based. It does have some space-based holdings, but is more inclined to point its efforts at smaller problems where it knows it can solve, and leave taking the fight directly to the PLANTs to the Britannian Union.
The People's Republic of Da Han Zhong
Literally 'The People's Republic of Great Han China' and abbreviated DHZ, the People's Republic of Da Han Zhong is one of the largest constituent countries of the Republic of East Asia. It is nominally the leader of the bloc, though Zaftra has occasionally taken this role as well. The DHZ has walked a tightrope between free-market, free-speech policy and authoritarian socialism for decades. Its current leader, Jie Bo Lao, leans strongly toward the authoritarian wing.
Zaftra is a union of many former Soviet states, and was expected to be a supranational union in its own right near the turn of the Universal Century. It ultimately joined the Republic of East Asia due to concerns about its weakening resource base. Zaftra has, rightly or not, been the scapegoat of many of the REA's overreaches on the international stage, and now occupies an also-ran status within the bloc.
India joined with the REA primarily for fear that if it did not, it would be made to. It is a somewhat poor fit, with unusually high mercantile openness and relatively high political freedom. There is a distinct sense that, left to its own devices, it might join the Oceania Cooperative Union... so naturally, the goal is to make sure it instead does not.
Khanka roughly comprises the land that today includes North Korea, large chunks of the Jilin and Heilongjiang provinces of China, and the Primorsky Krai region of Russia, as well as some surrounding terrain. Khanka is a Republic of East Asia-owned autonomous region not belonging to any single REA member nation. Vladivostok and Pyongyang both serve as REA trade centers, with the latter hosting much of the trade done with the OCU.
The Khanka Autonomous Region is dense with poorly-administrated military bases. Accordingly, it is a hotbed of dubious activity among NGOs and terrorist organizations with REA sympathies.