ASEAN’s Indo-Pacific strategy . . .
The ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific, published in late June, creates a common strategic vision for the 10 country Southeast Asian bloc that underlines its neutrality and emphasizes co-operation, free trade, and an adherence to a rules-based international system. The publication is a bold new statement of ASEAN members’ common approach to regional co-operation, international trade, and security.
South Korea to use ASEAN to address Japan trade woes . . .
ASEAN’S new strategic vision could help South Korea in its ongoing trade dispute with Japan as both will attend next week’s ASEAN meeting in Bangkok. South Korea’s Foreign Minister recently said that South Korea will “stress the importance of free and fair trade” in the coming meeting. It appears South Korea is hoping to enlist ASEAN’s support against Japan’s recent restriction on high-tech exports from South Korea, notably those used in the semiconductor and electronic-display industries.
Emboldened global partner . . .
Since its inception in 1967, ASEAN has focused on regional peace, prosperity, and stability. Its influence beyond Southeast Asia has been limited. Amid global trade wars, however, ASEAN’s focus on co-operation, trade, and rule-based international relations, plus its growing population and economic vibrancy, could see an increasing number of countries identify the Southeast Asian bloc as a top-tier partner, Canada included.
- ASEAN: ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific
- Channel News Asia: In full: PM Lee Hsien Loong’s speech at the 2019 Shangri-La Dialogue
- South China Morning Post: South Korea looks for help in its ‘trade war’ with Japan