Why Do Northeast Asia Not Have Political Integration

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Why Do Northeast Asian Countries Not Have Political Integration?

December 5, 2012

, Sulaiman Azeez Olawale
Contents
I. Introduction...................................................................................................................| 2| II. Literature Review.......................................................................................................| 3| 1. Lyou’s Argument ..............................................................................................................| 3| 2. Kim’s Argument ..............................................................................................................| 4| III. Three Factors ............................................................................................................| 6| | 1. Hegemony Competition Among the U.S., China and Japan............. ............. ............. ....| 6| | 2. No Common Security Threat ............................................................................................| 10| | 3. Norm of “Formal Inequality” and Non-intervention.........................................................| 13| IV. Conclusion...............................................................................................................| 16| V. Reference ......................................................................................................... .........| 18|

Ⅰ. Introduction
After the end of the Cold War, the world has consistently been in the trend of globalization. As a result, currently, all states are interdependent on each other and the number of regional organizations has risen. Due to the need of regional integration, European countries have established the European Community (EC) in 1957 and in 1994 it changed its name to the European Union (EU). The EC was formed with the goal of integrating European states politically and economically. It has been more than fifty years since the EC was established. However, Northeast Asian states, Korea, China, and Japan, still do not have similar organization as the EU, which in part serves a role of setting the direction of common regional policies through cooperation. Meanwhile, there has been previous attempt by Northeast Asian states to form such political organization, which is the Trilateral Cooperation Secretariat (TCS). It was established in 2010 with the goal of effectively developing integration among the three countries. Along with integration among themselves, the TCS tried to reach other Asian states to strengthen the whole regional integration. However, this organization has rather informal characteristic. It facilitates the cooperation of the three states through coordinating the meetings and such, but has not stepped forward to establish a common policy. Since the EU has been practicing substantial political power in world politics, it is quite clear that Northeast Asian states should also cooperate to exercise greater political influence. Then, what are the reasons for non-existence of such common political organization in Northeast Asia despite its need? To build more specific argument, the essay will focus on political aspect rather than economic one. Ⅱ. Literature Review

1. Lyou’s Argument
To begin with, from the perspective which regards the EU as a successful case of regional integration through transition from relative heterogeneity to homogeneity in terms of culture, economic policies and security, Lyou Byung-Woon argues that “a higher level of regional integration implies a higher level of economic interdependence, communication, cultural homogeneity and the capacity to resolve conflicts”. Based on this argument, he asserts that the fact that Asian countries have not made such solid integration achievements is the significant reason of the absence of integrated organizations.

However, the non-existence of those factors which have influenced European regional integration...
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