For many years, especially in the aftermath of the Cold War, the European Union (EU) was a source of inspiration. It inspired other countries around the world to embrace regionalism.
Mark Beeson ( 2004 ) argues that regionally based interactions are central components of the international order at the start of the 21st century.
One fundamental reason to pursue regionalism is to enhance economic liberalization. A series of deadlocks in WTO negotiations in the late 1990s motivated nations to think about having more substantially intensive, but more regionally localized, economic blocs.
The EU played a pivotal role in this by successfully constructing a supranational mechanism that integrates economic, social and (to some extent) political supremacies over national existence.
Taking the EU as an example, other regional institutions such as ASEAN, NAFTA, MERCOS...