ASEAN Matters for Southern California

Watch this video of CPD's roundtable about ASEAN featuring current U.S. Ambassadors to Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore

February 12, 2016

A look at the benefits of bilateral partnerships and engagement in this PD News roundup. 

I was excited to take part in an international symposium last week on Buddhist-Muslim interfaith dialogue in the commercial crossroads of Southeast Asia and the capital of Thailand, Bangkok. Appropriately titled "Interfaith Dialogue and Peaceful Coexistence in Multicultural Societies."

A fresh and ambitious Justin Trudeau administration has mainstreamed the climate change agenda into its foreign policy engagement with Thailand, but comprehensive bilateral relations must await a return to democracy in Thailand, says Canada's ambassador to Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia. 


President Barack Obama will host a summit with leaders from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in California on Feb. 15 and 16, the White House said on Wednesday. [...] “This unprecedented gathering – the first hosted by the United States with the ASEAN leaders – builds on the deeper partnership that the United States has forged with ASEAN since 2009 and will further advance the Administration’s rebalance to Asia and the Pacific,” 

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Saturday said that the India-Japan bilateral relationship has the “greatest potential,” a view that was shared by his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi.

A year and a half since China began rapidly building and militarizing artificial islands in the contested, resource-rich waters of the South China Sea, the states most threatened by Chinese expansion are looking for ways to push back more forcefully. 

On October 21, Vietnam and the Philippines convened the eighth meeting of their bilateral cooperation committee. The deliberations focused on specific measures for advancing collaboration as the two ASEAN states are expected to lift ties to a strategic partnership next month.