Q5. Is ASEAN relevant to the regional security of Southeast Asia?
16 pages, including cover page3,176 words (excluding footnotes, endnotes, bibliography) |
Yes, ASEAN is still relevant to the regional security of Southeast Asia. I will attempt to justify my case by elaborating how the 3 key political accords and the ASEAN way has helped shared ASEAN to what it is today. I will also provide a brief summary of ASEAN’s achievements and challenges till date. Finally, I will highlight the main initiatives that ASEAN has taken to overcome future challenges to ensure its continued relevancy to the regional security of Southeast Asia.
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was established on 8 August 1967 in Bangkok by the five original Member Countries, namely, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand. Since then, membership has expanded to include Brunei Darussalam, Vietnam, Lao, Myanmar and Cambodia. The founding of ASEAN followed the end of Indonesia’s ‘Confrontation’ against Malaysia and Singapore, which had proved costly for Indonesia’s economic development and regional stability. Thus, preventing a repetition of such inter-state confrontation and developing a mechanism for the pacific settlement of disputes were the major considerations behind ASEAN’s formation.
Other reasons for the formation of ASEAN include (a) shared threat perceptions of communist insurgency arising from internal social, economic and political conditions and (b) the desire of the members to enhance economic cooperation for mutual gain especially through collective bargaining with its major trading partners.
The early declarations and statements from summits show that the group was founded primarily to provide a framework for regional political and economic cooperation. Today, ASEAN has developed an organizational structure that looks not only into the political and economic issues in the region but also social development... [continues]
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