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Jakarta Post

Regional shifts and the Act East policy

  • Shankari Sundararaman and Vijay Sakhuja

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New Delhi   /   Wed, July 25, 2018   /  11:24 am
Regional shifts and the Act East policy President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo (left) and Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad salute their countries' national flags at Bogor Palace on June 29. (Antara/Puspa Perwitasari)

As the broader regional order is shifting in the Indo-Pacific, Southeast Asia comes under greater scrutiny for India as its closest neighbor to the east. The core issues driving Southeast Asia are clearly seen across two broad parameters — first, changes shaping the domestic political scenario and second, a rapidly transitioning external environment where major powers are jostling for more space. 

In the midst of this there are debates about norms, values, shared visions and convergences of interest further complicating the regional matrix. 

At the domestic level one can see huge transitions shaping Southeast Asia. Recent elections in Malaysia have given people a sense of optimism that a New Malaysia (Malaysia Baru) is in the making. 

The old guard of Malaysian politics, the Barisan Nasional, a coalition of predominantly t...

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