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Jakarta Post

ASEAN must nurture transformative trait

Jakarta   /   Thu, July 20, 2017   /  11:29 am
ASEAN must nurture transformative trait In consultation: President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi discuss on the sidelines the 30th ASEAN Summit in Manila, the Philippines, on April 29. (Courtesy of the Presidential Office/File)

Without hesitation: ASEAN has mattered. Absent ASEAN, countries in Southeast Asia could have continued to be encumbered by deep divisions, distrust and animosity. Without ASEAN, countries of Southeast Asia could remain pawns in the proxy rivalries of extra-regional major powers. And a Southeast Asia without A SEAN could have only too easily followed cycles of conflictsunder development-political upheavals. Challenges to ASEAN’s unity have been well reported. Yet ASEAN has demonstrated its resilience. Ultimately, ASEAN has proven indispensable. ASEAN’s contributions have been nothing less than transformative. “Strategic trust” has replaced the trust deficits once common in relations among countries of Southeast Asia. ASEAN “centrality” in the wider region’ s political-security and economic architecturebuilding has usurped the vision...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.