Articles from Journals

(Arranged Chronologically) 


Title: Asia: A Perspective on the Subprime Crisis
Author(s): Khor Hoe Ee and Kee Rui Xiong
Source:  Finance and Development, June 2008, Volume 45 No. 2

Link: http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2008/06/khor.htm#author#author


Title: ASEAN Exports: Charting the slowdown
Author(s): Philip Wyatt, Senior Economist, ASEAN
Source:  UBS Investment Research Southeast Asian Focus, 4 April 2007

Abstract: Exports, equivalent to 64% of its GDP clearly matter for ASEAN economic growth. In this Focus article we review recent cyclical S E Asian export trends and reexamine their outlook, particularly our base forecasts in 2007 and the risks. In sum, we adhere to the view that 2007 will see a moderate downswing in the export cycle, but unlike 2001 there will be only mild implications for real GDP. This result runs counter to history for two main reasons: first the scale of the downturn in global demand is likely to be more moderate than that in 2001. Second, the ASEAN domestic economies are strong and the stage is set for a cyclical upturn. On top of this, those economies with more diversified export bases and which are least sensitive to exports should be expected to ride through this export downturn least scathed.


Title: Financial Integration in Asia : Recent Developments and Next Steps
Author(s): David Cowen, Ranil Salgado, Hemant Shah, Leslie Teo, and Alessandro Zanello
Source:  IMF Working Paper – WP/06/196

Abstract: This working paper brings together three papers prepared as background for discussion at the Second High-Level Conference on Asian integration cohosted by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the IMF in May 2006. The first documents recent trends in the intraregional flow of goods and capital and explores linkages between real and financial integration. The second focuses on the institutional and regulatory reforms needed to reap the benefits- and contain the risks- of financial integration in Asia. The third considers the implications of economic integration for the choice of the exchange rate regime and the conduct of macroeconomic policies.


Title: Economic Integration in East Asia: Trends, Prospects, and a Possible Roadmap
Author(s): Pradumna B. Rana
Source:  ADB Working Paper Series on Regional Economic Integration No.2, July 2006

Abstract: This paper reviews trends in East Asian regionalism in the areas of trade and investment, money and finance, and infrastructure. It prevents various measures of trade and financial integration. An important finding of the paper is that increasing trade and financial integration in the region is now starting to lead to a synchronization of business cycles in a selected group of countries, further enhancing the case for monetary integration among these countries. The paper also outlines a roadmap for east Asia integration.


Title: India's Coming Eclipse of China
Author(s): Hugo Restall
Source:  Far Eastern Economic Review Volume: Volume 169, Number 2 / March 2006

Abstract: India is poised to emerge from China's shadow, and with its strong fundamentals could even overtake should China falter.

 


Title: East Asia, Many Clubs, Little Progress
Author(s): Hadi Soesastro
Source:  Far Eastern Economic Review Volume: Volume 169, Number 1 / Jan/Feb 2006

Abstract: East Asia has no lack of regional integration initiatives but no consensus on which of them to pursue.

 


 

Title: East Asia, Regionalism, and U.S. National Interests: How Much Change?
Author(s): Gerald L. Curtis
Source:  American Foreign Policy Interests  Volume: Volume 26, Number 3 / June 2004

Abstract: East Asian regional organizations can emerge and thrive on their own, without the participation of the United States, the author argues convincingly.

 


 

Title: Japan and Asian Monetary Regionalisation: Cultivating a New Regional Leadership after the Asian Financial Crisis
Author(s): S.N. Katada
Source:  Geopolitics  Volume: Volume 7, Number 1 / Summer 2002

Abstract: The Asian financial crisis of 1997-98 left many marks in the political economy of Asia, among which is the (re)emergence of Japan's interest in taking a leadership role in defining and strengthening regional monetary cooperation. Japan's new interest stems from its perspective on the causes of, and appropriate solutions to, theAsian crisis, especially in contrast to US-IMF views and responses which directly challenged Japan's economic and ideological interests in the regional economy. A journey to regional monetary leadership for Japan has just started, and it is not going to be an easy one. Much of the fate of Japan's  regional monetary  leadership hinges on whether or not Japan succeeds in cultivating a constituency among Asian  members for its initiatives.


Title: Economic cooperation and integration in East Asia
Author(s):
Chia Siow Yue
Source:  Asia Pacific Review Volume: 11, Number 1 / May 2004

Abstract: Recent developments in the relationship between East Asian countries and prospects for further cooperation are discussed, together with analysis of the driving forces for proliferation of free trade areas (FTAs) and preferential trade arrangements (PTAs), as well as the different types of arrangements. The evolution of the key features of such economic cooperation agreements are outlined and the challenges and issues facing more extensive East Asian economic integration are reviewed. The paper concludes with recommendations for bringing about a viable, effective East Asian economic community that will benefit member countries and contribute positively to global trade.


Title: Challenges for currency cooperation in East Asia
Author(s):
Kiyohiko Fukushima
Source:  Asia Pacific Review Volume: 11, Number 1 / May 2004

Abstract: The defects of the current international financial system are creating tremendous distortions in the economies of East Asia. For the time being, most of the developing countries in East Asia have no choice but to adopt some sort of a flexible, wider band system (crawling band) while resorting to capital control when necessary, in order to avoid the recurrence of the Asian currency crisis. Japan's approach to building a stable international financial system in East Asia has gone through several stages since the late 1970s. Though the latest approach of setting up the Asian Bond Fund (ABF) is a step in the right direction, the ABF has severe limitations in reducing the risks for the developing countries in Asia. The ABF needs to be replaced by the Asian Bond Corporation (ABC) in order to develop an international capital market in Asia and use the abundant saving in Asia for financing the growth of Asia. In the process of expanding the activities of the ABC, Asia can adopt the notional common currency based on a basket of major currencies. That notional currency will pave the way toward introducing the Asian common currency, which can be the ultimate goal for the economic cooperation and integration in East Asia. In the meantime, while enhancing currency cooperation, East Asia needs a lender of the last resort in order to keep its economy from collapsing from another currency attack. Japan has been trying to play that role and is poised to take that responsibility as the largest and the most developed economy in the region. International capital markets and a truly international currency must be supported by numerous institutions and intellectual frameworks. Asia is yet to build those institutions. To help build those institutions, we in East Asia need to establish a new international research institution which would coordinate the strenuous intellectual efforts needed for building institutions that bolster the international capital market in Asia. The envisaged new institute can be dubbed the "Asian Monetary Institute," or "AMI."


Title: East Asian ideas of regionalism: a normative critique
Author(s):
Baogang He
Source:  Australian Journal of International Affairs Volume: 58, Number 1 / March 2004

Abstract: Little was done to challenge nationalist assumptions in the name of regionalism. Regarding nationalism as a sensitive matter best left to a later stage of regionalism, they [advocates of regionalism] did not focus on how nationalist outlooks in the media and elsewhere stand in the way of both regionalism and internationalism.

Gilbert Rozman (2000: 18)

With an increasing regional integration and development, there are many competing ideas of, and proposals for, regional development in Asia. This article examines the historical evolution of the idea of regionalism, the meanings of Asian regionalisms, variations of Asian regionalisms and their impact on regional cooperation in East Asia. It discusses Mahathir's idea of neo-Asianism, Japanese new Asianism, Chinese ideas of regionalism, and variations of Korean ideas of regionalism. It also examines a normative basis of regionalism with special reference to the sovereignty question. The paper concludes that behind East Asian regionalism is nationalism which constitutes driving forces for regionalism; that two competing orders (Asia-Pacific regionalism versus pan-Asianism) create different expectations and visions of how East Asia region should evolve and they are in tensions and lead to different directions; and that East Asia lacks a convincing and acceptable normative framework. 

 


Title: In Defence of FTAs: from purity to pragmatism in East Asia  
Author(s):
Barry Desker
Source:  The Pacific Review   Volume: 17, Number 1 / March 2004

Abstract:  This paper discusses the shift in East Asia from a focus on multilateral trade liberalization through the WTO to a pragmatic approach since 1999 favouring bilateral and regional FTAs while continuing to support the WTO system. It is argued that such FTAs are a second-best option compared to WTO agreements. However, while economists may seek the ideal solution, governments will focus on the politically attainable, especially as new multilateral agreements require lengthy negotiations beyond the life span of governments. As the WTO negotiating process has become bogged down, even once sceptical governments in East Asia are turning to FTAs. It is contended that such FTAs could form a lattice network within and across regions. In this context, the paper discusses the underlying security rationale for the conclusion of FTAs, highlighting the nexus between security interests and international economic policy in East Asia.

 

 


Title: Complex regional multilateralism: 'strategising' Japan's responses to Southeast Asia
Author(s):
Julie Gilson 
Source:  The Pacific Review   Volume:  Volume 17, Number 1 / March 2004

Abstract:  Japanese government interests in Southeast Asia continue to expand. Official speeches refer to the growth of a 'community that acts together', while institutional linkages have been strengthened with the creation of the ASEAN Plus Three process and by a proliferation of bilateral arrangements. These developing networks raise questions about Japan's future orientation towards its wider region.

This article assesses recent developments, by challenging some of the fundamental assumptions about Japan's regional behaviour. First, it examines how a tendency to render mutually exclusive bilateral and multilateral forms of behaviour serves to obfuscate a focus on the fundamental processes of regional engagement. Second, this article delineates Japan's changing orientation towards the region as part of a process of 'complex regional multilateralism', in which a range of often ad hoc engagements have resulted in a loose framework for interaction. In so doing, it suggests that Japan's current policy-making approach towards Southeast Asia may be regarded as a continuation of policy that is, nevertheless, being buffeted by a range of - primarily regional - external influences. The resulting set of perceived strategies demonstrates not an either/or approach to regional engagement but, rather, shows how the Japanese government manages changing circumstances to carve out a new role for itself in Southeast Asia.


Title: Securing security through prosperity: the San Francisco System in comparative perspective
Author(s): Kent E. Calder
Source:  The Pacific Review   Volume: 
17, Number 1 / March 2004

Abstract:  The integrated system of political-economic relations that has prevailed in the Pacific since the September 1951 treaty of peace with Japan, known here as the San Francisco System, is distinctive in comparison with subregional systems elsewhere in the world. This paper outlines key defining features, such as (1) a dense network of bilateral alliances; (2) an absence of multilateral security structures; (3) strong asymmetry in alliance relations, both in security and economics; (4) special precedence to Japan; and (5) liberal trade access to American markets, coupled with relatively limited development assistance.

After contrasting this system to analogous arrangements elsewhere, especially in the Atlantic, it explores both the origins and the prognosis of this remarkably durable political-economic entity. Complementary domestic political-economic interests on both sides of the Pacific, reinforcing a brilliant original Japan-centric design by John Foster Dulles, account for persistence, it is argued, while forces for change center on the dynamic emerging role of China.  


Title: European Union Integration Lessons For ASEAN + 3: The Importance Of Contextual Specificity
Author(s): James Angresano
Source: Journal of Asian Economics Volume: Jan 2004

  Abstract: This paper will argue that EU integration appears to offer ASEAN and three Northeast Asian Countries (China, Japan and South Korea) political and security lessons concerning maintenance of regional stability, as well as some economic lessons. There is not, however, any institutional blueprint for integration that these countries could emulate. This is in part because economies are characterized by "contextual specificity" of chosen institutions and their corresponding working rules. These institutions and rules evolve in particular cultural and historical settings and are shaped by the specific country's philosophical basis, political structure, and attitudes of authorities towards alternative types of economic institutions and the types of corresponding rules they could choose to establish for those institutions.

 


Title: A new world order in East Asia?
Author(s): Snitwongse K.
Source:
Asia-Pacific Review Volume: November 2003, vol. 10, no. 2

Abstract: The outcome of the war in Iraq served as a stark reminder that the US perceives its unrivaled military superiority as largely freeing it from the imperative to take account of the views of its allies. At the same time, the balance of power in the Asia-Pacific region is shifting, as Chinas economic rise continues and Japan's mounting fiscal woes erode its influence overseas. Kusuma Snitwongse, chairperson of the advisory board of Chulalongkorn University's Institute of Security and International Studies, Thailand, paints a vivid picture of a region whose future is clouded by uncertainty. Can the growing threat from a nuclear North Korea be contained? Will economic integration alleviate tension between China and Taiwan? Is ASEAN capable of playing an effective role on the world stage? The order that emerges will be shaped by numerous forces and, the writer hopes, will be one that is based on the precepts of multilateralism and on the traditional Asian virtue of abiding by the consensus.

 


Title: Exploring alternative theories of economic regionalism: from trade to finance in Asian co-operation?
Author(s):
Heribert Dieter
Source:
Review of International Political Economy  Volume: 10, Number 3 / August 2003

Abstract: The financial crises of the late 1990s marked an intellectual watershed for the global economy, and also for regionalism as the Janus face of globalization. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, the theory and practice of regional cooperation and integration may evolve along different lines to how it was understood for most of the second half of the twentieth century. In East Asia, in particular, this will mean that the relationship between multilateralism and regionalism will change. The 'East Asian' region will become an increasingly important domain within which to explore enhanced protection against financial crises. What we might call 'monetary regionalism', sceptical western voices notwithstanding, is now firmly on the regional agenda in East Asia.

Within conventional political economy, the theory and practice of monetary regionalism is not as easy to understand as traditional, trade-driven, regional integration. Thus one aim of this paper is to outline a theory of monetary regionalism and demonstrate the degree to which it represents a break with understandings of the regional project in East Asia prior to the late 1990s. From its start in 1989, APEC claimed to be a new type of regionalism. The promise was that APEC would promote open regionalism. APEC did not achieve this goal. Nor did it provide support to its Asian members during the financial crises of the late 1990s.

At the same time, more traditional (what we might call Balassian) understandings of trade-driven regional integration are showing signs of decreasing importance. There is a growing appeal to trade co-operation, but this is notably an increasing interest in bilateral preferential trading arrangements. This leads to a complex picture of competing regional initiatives across the economic policy spectrum. The paper locates these initiatives in the wider context of the growing politico-economic dialogue between Southeast and Northeast Asia that has developed via the ASEAN+3 process since 1997.  


Title: Forum on East Asian Monetary Cooperation
Author(s): Jai-Won-Ryou and Yunjong Wang
Source: MONETARY COOPERATION IN EAST ASIA: Major Issues and Prospects Volume: Working Paper No. 1, August 2003

Abstract: The Asian currency crisis in 1997 and the launch of the euro in 1999 made the possibility and desirability of introducing a regional currency in East Asia a point of debate.  At present, the empirical findings and policy implications of previous studies are mixed. We are still in need of theoretical and empirical studies that capture the salient features of East Asia, and give us reliable recommendations for incentive structures, configurations and policy instruments in monetary cooperation in its various stages. This paper aims to review major conceptual and empirical issues relevant to monetary cooperation in East Asia, including proposals for a regional cooperative framework for exchange rate stability or forming a currency union in the region. Monetary cooperation in East Asia will be a long process that requires building collective institutions in the beginning. As the economic structures of East Asian countries converge with one another through closer ties of trade, investment and finance, the necessity for monetary cooperation will be more likely to emerge in the future.


Title: Trade Integration and Business Cycle Synchronization in East Asia
Author(s): Kwanho Shin and Yunjong Wang
Source: Korea Institute For International Economic Policy Volume: Working Paper 03-01

Abstract: As trade integration deepens in East Asia, it is expected that there will be closer links in business cycles among East Asian countries. Theoretically, however, increased trade can lead business cycles across trading partners to shift in either direction: while inter-industry trade could overturn this tendency. By using the data for twelve Asian economies, this paper finds that intra-industry trade is the major channel through which business cycles become synchronized among Asian economies, although increased trade itself does not necessarily lead to close business cycle coherence. This result has important implications for the prospects of a currency union in the region.


Title: CHINA AND ASEAN: Renavigating Relations for a 21st century Asia
Author(s):
Alice D. Ba
Source: Asian Survey Volume: 40(4), July-August 2003

Abstract: In East Asia, few relationships have evolved as much as that between China and the Association of South East Asian Nations. While important differences remain, relations have seen a marked improvement over the past decade, especially when compared to the considerable suspicion that once defined their relations. Changing U.S priorities in Asia have played an important part in that evolution.


Title: Adjusting to the New Asia
Author(s):
Morton Abramowitz and Stephen Bosworth
Source:
Foreign Affairs Volume: 82 (4), July-August 2003

Summary:  Transpacific relations are now shifting as dramatically as transatlantic ones. As Japan slips in power and relevance, China grows ever stronger, and since September 11, Washington has become willing to let Beijing play a larger regional role. Meanwhile, tensions in Korea could still provoke a war--or help reshape the continent.  

 


Title: Constructing an 'East Asian’ concept and growing regional identity: from EAEC to ASEAN+3
Author(s):
Takashi Terada
Source:
The Pacific Review  Volume: 16, Number 2 / June 2003

Abstract: The concept of East Asia as a region is relatively new. Until the appearance of the abortive East Asian Economic Caucus (EAEC) idea, which was put forward by Prime Minister Mahathir of Malaysia in the early 1990s, there was no strong conceptual framework for regionalism in East Asia as a whole. At that time, the idea of an integrated East Asia, joining Northeast Asia and Southeast Asia in regional unity, was not yet firmly enough established to gain the consensus necessary to form a regional institution based on the larger framework. Following the constructivist approach, which emphasizes the significance of analysing how regional 'togetherness' can be strengthened and how this influences the formation of a regional institution, this article examines how and why the first proposal for East Asian regionalism, EAEC, failed to be realized, and then analyses the successful establishment and development of ASEAN+3. The article stresses the significance of the emergence and increasing acceptance of the concept of East Asia, and identifies factors such as the Asian financial crisis and the development of regionalism in other regions which helped to promote the self-other distinction necessary for the formation of an East Asian identity. Further, it emphasizes that the strengthened bond among the countries of the region can be attributed partly to the successful establishment of the ASEAN+3 meetings. The article also highlights Japan's growing involvement in ASEAN+3, an approach which contrasts sharply with its lukewarm attitudes towards EAEC. Japan's push for the promotion of ASEAN+3 can be seen as a major factor behind the development of this regionalism. Finally, this article discusses whether a truly East Asia regional institution such as an East Asian Free Trade Agreement is likely to emerge.


Title: Asia's new regionalism: government capacity and cooperation in the Western Pacific
Author(s):
Natasha Hamilton-Hart
Source:
Review of International Political Economy  Volume: 10, Number 2 / May 2003

Abstract: Since 1997, cooperation initiatives involving Asian countries have become more visible and ambitious. These initiatives reflect incentives for regional cooperation in Asia that are the product of prior levels of regional integration and international developments. While many countries in the region stand to gain from more substantive cooperation, they are likely to find certain cooperative goals difficult to achieve. This difficulty cannot be ascribed to the commonly cited obstacles to cooperation in Asia: economic diversity, inter-state political rivalry and the influence exercised by the US. Rather, parts of the new regional agenda are complicated by the kind of government organizations that exist in some countries. Government organizations that lack domestic regulatory capacity are poorly equipped to participate in some regional initiatives.

 


Title: India’s Look East Policy: An Asianist Strategy in Perspective
Author(s):
Christophe Jafferlot 
Source: India Review Volume Volume: 2, No. 2, April 2003   

Abstract:  The notion of Asianism is not something new to India. The first India and Asianism had much to with the affirmation of nationalist feelings in the framework of an anti colonial movement. While it would be reductionist to deny any role to ideas- to the notion of cultural affinities between Asian countries- Indians largely promoted the Asianist ideology because it suited their national interests. This repertoire almost vanished after the failure of India’s first attempts at propagating its brand of Asianism in the 1950s. This setback marked the beginning of a long period of retreat from Asia that ended in the 1990s.  

 

The Asianist sensitivity that became visible in India in the 1990s responds to economic imperatives: Indian leaders eagerly invoke their cultural affinities with East Asia in their efforts to join this new pole of growth. Thus, the instrumentalization of these themes is again above all determined by national interests.  

 

India, which has been so far isolationist as if its huge size and population allowed it to be self sufficient, is now opening up to East and South East Asia. It is doing so willingly, as this part of the world is perceived as an extension of India’s own civilization and the birthplace of an alternative, non-western mode of modernization.

 


Title: Embedded mercantilism and open regionalism: the crisis of a regional political project
Author(s):
Jayasuriya K.
Source:
Third World Quarterly Volume: 24, No. 2, April 2003

 Abstract: This paper advances the argument that moves towards regional integration need to be understood as 'regional governance projects' undertaken by domestic actors and coalitions. Regional political projects--such as open regionalism--have roots in domestic structures, and it is this which defines the broad configuration of the regional political economy. On the basis of this framework the paper suggests, first, that the strategy of open regionalism was contingent on a particular configuration of power and interests in the domestic and external economy (embedded mercantilism). Second, this system of embedded mercantilism depended on a set of domestic coalitions between tradeable and non-tradeable sectors of the economy. The non-tradeable sector in Southeast Asia was entrenched within a particular system of political patronage. Third, the Asian crisis and other structural changes in the international economy have made these domestic coalitions less sustainable, thereby creating opportunities for new forms of regional governance projects.

 


Title: Multilateralism, Regionalism, Bilateral and Crossregional Free Trade Arrangements: All Paved with Good Intentions for ASEAN?
Author(s): Linda Low
Source: Asian Economic Journal Volume: 17 Issue 1 Page 65  - March 2003
doi:10.1111/1351-3958.00162

Abstract: Current initiatives in Asia and Asia Pacific regionalism are responses to regionalism happening elsewhere in the context of globalization, information communication technology and knowledge-based economy. The conclusion is that many economies are 'having it both ways' in multilateralism under World Trade Organization (WTO) and new regionalism. The argument is that the 'first best' theory of free trade under multilateralism and WTO have fallen short. A 'second best' theory of new regionalism has been acknowledged by the Doha ministerial declaration to complement and supplement WTO. Both Asia challenged Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) are challenged by ASEAN Plus Three (APT), which originated from the Asian crisis in the failed Asian Monetary Fund (AMF).

Singapore has responded to these challenges in bilateral trading agreements, driven by its idiosyncratic features of a small, city-state economy and frustrated by laggard ASEAN. Increasingly, there is a divergence in macroeconomic policy between Singapore and ASEAN in terms of openness and competition. The dilemma in Singapore's strategy of bilateral trading agreements and foreign economic trade policy is precisely this divergence in macroeconomic philosophy and policy. The pressure on ASEAN is no less from APT, China and regionalism elsewhere than from Singapore. However, the present paper concedes that bilateral and crossregional trading arrangements are still second best, and that broader regionalism and multilateralism are still superior. With so many regional trading arrangements and emerging competition policy there may be rules of origin or 'spaghetti bowl' effects for Singapore. In 'realpolitiks' and real political economy, the balancing of gains and benefits is not easy.  


Title: China-Asean Free Trade Agreement: Shaping Future Economic Relations
Author(s): John Wong; Sarah Chan
Source: Asian Survey   Volume: 43 Number: 3

Abstract: The China-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement has been hailed as a landmark pact in pushing for freer trade between China and the ASEAN countries. With the establishment of the free trade zone, trade and investment between the Chinese and ASEAN economies are expected to increase significantly; but while the economic benefits are inexorable, the extent of gains derived from closer integration hinges on the Sino-ASEAN economic relationship, which is both complementary and competitive in nature. At the present stage of development, China and ASEAN are more competitive than complementary, given the similarity in their trade and industrial structures. ASEAN and China are also direct competitors for foreign investment, rather than significant investors in each other's economies. Despite these challenges, the prospects for bilateral trade to flourish are bright if both China and ASEAN can interlock their economies through deeper integration in the long term.


Title: Asian regionalism and its effects on trade in the 1980s and 1990s
Author(s): Ramon Clarete, Christopher Edmonds and Jessica Seddon Wallack
Source: Journal of Asian Economics Volume: 14, Issue 1, February 2003

 

Abstract: This paper begins by outlining the major preferential trade agreements (PTAs) in Asia and other regions and reviewing trends in trade flows. The paper uses a gravity model augmented with several sets of dummy variables to estimate the effect of various PTAs on trade flows within and across membership groupings as well as the effect of PTAs on members' trade with Asian countries. On the basis of these estimates, we are able to categorize 11 major PTAs into those that increase intrabloc trade at the expense of their respective imports from the rest of the world; those that expand their respective trade among their members without reducing their trade with nonmembers; and those that reduce trade with nonmembers without significant changes in intrabloc trade. The authors also show that PTAs have augmented trade in Asia.  

 


Title: Asian economic integration: a perspective on South Asia
Author(s):
Saleem M. Khan and Zahira S. Khan
Source: Journal of Asian Economics Volume: 13, Issue 6, January 2003, Pages 767-785

Abstract: This paper argues in favor of open regionalism and continent-based integration in Asia. These are the effective instruments of outward-oriented development. The enlargement of trading blocs into continent-based integration also serves as a countervailing power to stem the excesses of economic globalism. The case made in the paper shows the need for institutional changes for promoting economic development. Institutional changes along with open regionalism are essential to enhancing outward-oriented development in South Asia. Respectable progress has been made in these areas across the continents in general, and in Asia in particular (ASEAN, SAARC, APEC). Efforts on these initiatives must be redoubled as we start the 21st century.


Title: The Social Construction of International Institutions: The Case of ASEAN+3
Author(s): Dirk Nabers
Source: International Relations Of The Asia-Pacific Volume: 3 (2003) pp. 1113-136

Abstract: Slowly, but steadily, a new international institution is emerging in East Asia: the ASEAN+ 3 forum, comprising the ten members of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) plus China, Japan and South Korea. ASEAN+ 3 is an interesting case of institution-building in that it is constructed around the core of an already existing institution, ASEAN which was founded in 1967. This analysis of the multilateral forum seeks to answer two theoretical questions: (i) Why do states cooperate? (ii) What happens to their interests and identities once they communicate with each other? In view of this task, Nabers, offers a social constructivist variant of international relations theory to explain the instigation of the process on one hand and the processual construction of the institution on the other. The underlying belief is that not only do states influence the development of international institutions, but that institutions can also exert influence on foreign policy behaviour.

The approach introduced here acknowledges that international reality is a social construction driven by collective understandings emerging from social interaction. This approach to the explanation of the initiation and the subsequent development of an institution recognizes the existence of both material and normative grounds of foreign policy action. It differs from neoliberal institutionalism because in theory as well as in realism collective interest is assumes as pre-given and hence exogenous to social interaction. In contrast, we suppose that social interaction ultimately does have transformative effects on interests and identity, because continuous cooperation is likely to influence intersubjective meanings. This method of analysis corresponds with Moravscik’s tripartite analysis of integrations: while the initial phase refers to the formation of stat preferences, second and third involves the dynamic aspect of ‘constructing’ national institutions: the outcomes of interstate bargaining and the choice of international design.


Title: Is East Asia under-represented in the International Monetary Fund?
Author(s): David P. Rapkin and Jonathan R. Strand
Source: International Relations Of The Asia-Pacific Volume: .3 (2003) pp. 1-28.

Abstract: East Asian countries perceive that their individual and collective positions in the world economy are not fairly represented in existing international institutions, which have yet to fully adjust to the region’s rapid economic ascent over the last several decades. This problem seems especially acute in the International Monetary Fund (IMF), where in each country’s participation in the organization’s weighted voting scheme is supposed to reflect the number of votes. Are Asian countries’ IMF quotas incommensurate with their relative economic weight and, if so, by what margin? And if Asian countries are indeed under represented in the IMF, which other country, group of countries or region is correspondingly over represented? This paper examines these questions from several perspectives. It first discusses the purpose of quotas, and how they are determined. It then turns to the question of whether Asian perceptions concerning under representation are empirically corroborated. The first data analysis section compares current quotas to relative measures of economic weight in the world economy. The following section compares four quota values: past quotas, current quotas, calculated quotas, and quotas calculated using the method of the IMF’s external quota review board. In short, the data demonstrate that Asia does have a strong claim for a greater share of IMF quotas. The articles concludes with a brief consideration of possible alternatives to the IMF’s current use of quota to determine voting weights, and argue that the problem of Asian under-representation will probably not be corrected unless the IMF’s quota-determination process in overhauled.


Title: THE US, JAPAN, AND TRADE LIBERALIZATION: From Bilateralism to Regional Multilateralism to Regionalism+
Author(s): Ellis S. Krauss
Source: The Pacific Review Volume: 16, No.3 2003, pp. 307-329

Abstract: Japan’s foreign economic policy has undergone two crucial changes in the past decade and a half: first the shift from predominantly US-Japan bilateralism to the addition of regional multilateralism, and then the recent extension to regional FTAs for the first time. To what extent did these shifts in Japan’s behaviour in the trade area represent a deep shift in the purposes and goals of Japanese foreign economic policy? This article looks at how American policy changes and development in the US-Japan relationship, and economic globalization, produced the changes in Japan’s domestic policy thinking and process that led to these outcomes and to particular patterns of development of these policy shifts. Using a simple version and modification of ‘strategic interaction theory’ it concludes that despite recent arguments that the shift to bilateral FTAs may presage a turning point toward an Asian bloc, instead it reflects a remarkable continuity in Japan’s foreign economic goals in the post war period. Although an important change, it indicates only using new means to adapt to the changed regional economic security environment after the East Asian Financial crisis and the debacle of trade liberalization in EVSL in APEC. Japan now has a full ‘multi-tiered’ range of trade alternatives to advance its constant goals of maintaining a US ‘military shield’ and promoting its own ‘economic sword’ in the region.  


Title: The Idea of an “Asian Monetary Fund”: The Problems Of Financial Institutionalism In The  Asia-Pacific
Author(s):
Shaun Narine
Source: Asian Perspective Volume: 27, No. 2, 2003, pp. 65-103.

Abstract: Asian observers attribute the Asian economic crisis of 1997-199 to the instability inherent in the global financial system. In response, Asians have discussed creating an Asian Monetary Fund (AMF) to manage future financial crises and have demanded the reform of the global financial architects. However, the New International Financial Architecture developed since the crisis fails to address the fundamental sources of instability in the present global financial system. This system poses economic and ideological threats to the stability of East Asia. Therefore, regional states have powerful incentives to create an effective AMF. However¸ traditional security concerns, historical grievances, and political rivalries between the major Asia-Pacific powers limit the prospects of regional cooperation. Under these conditions, it is unlikely that East Asian states can create an effective regional financial institution. However, Asian states still need to protect themselves from global financial volatility. They will probably pursue this goal through bilateral and multilateral arrangements with the regional powers. The Asia-Pacific will maintain a distinctive East Asian political economy.  


Title: Japan’s Twin Challenges: Dealing With An ASEAN At The Crossroads And East Asian Regionalism
Author(s):
Eric Teo Chu Cheow
Source: Asia Pacific Review Volume: 10, No.1, 2003

Abstract: Still reeling from the aftershocks of the Asian economic crisis of the late 1990s, the ten members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations find themselves confronting both internal structural problems and external challenges, such as, the threats to the Southeast Asian region posed by Islamic fundamentalism and terrorism. Japan, currently searching for ways to escape its own economic mire, is also faced with challenges from beyond its own borders, not least the unstoppable onward economic march of China. In this article Eric Teo, council secretary of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs, argues that, just as the ASEAN nations must seek to heal their own internal division, Japan must resist the temptation to focus solely on its own domestic woes and instead actively engage its ASEAN neighbours, as well as South Korea and China, in order to forge a role for itself as a member of the greater East Asian Community.


Title: China and Japan: A façade of Friendship
Author(s):
Benjamin Self
Source:
The Washington Quarterly Volume: 26:1, Winter 2002-2003 

 

Abstract: Over the past three decades, Japan and China have repeatedly declared that they are entering a new era of bilateral relations. For Japan, the use of such language reflected hopes of leaving the past behind, but Japanese expectations were never realised because the Chinese repeatedly dwelled on the past. The Japan that China befriended was penitent over the war and basically distrustful of itself. By now, Japan has distanced itself from the militarist era and believes it can begin to use its military, if it chooses, with democratic legitimacy. This transformation is the core of the contemporary strain that history causes China and Japan. As the two big fish in a small pond, Japan and China’s rivalry for regional leadership is increasingly leaving China confident and Japan irritated.

The most important steps to take are not simply away from the worn-out framework of friendship diplomacy but toward a new model of relations, a new paradigm based on recognition of the changes that have taken place. Japan can no longer treat China, as an economically backward country and China must not try to prevent Japan from exercising political influence and leadership. The two neighbours must engage one another honestly and frankly, with no illusion of friendship but willingness to build a new framework of cooperation based on plentiful common national interests.  

 


Title: Energy Security In Asia And Japanese Policy
Author(s):
Tsutomu Toichi
Source: Asia Pacific Review Volume: 10, No.1, 2003  

Abstract: To satisfy its demand for energy, Japan continues to rely heavily on oil imported from the Middle East. Increasing geopolitical uncertainty in the region has underscored the urgent need for new initiatives in national energy security policy. Projecting a continuing steep rise in oil consumption by the rapidly industrializing nations of Asia (notably China and India), Tsutomu Toichi, managing director of the Institute of Energy Economics in Tokyo, proposes various alternative sources of energy for Japan and its neighbours. Sounding a cautiously optimistic note, Toichi argues that increasing levels of cooperation between the nations of the East Asia could serve as a basis for joint development projects that might allow Japan to loosen the shackles of dependence on Middle Eastern oil, but cautions that Japan must first place greater emphasis on building good relationships with neighbouring countries, and must also more closely align its energy, security, and environmental policies.


Title: China And Japan: Trouble Ahead?
Author(s): Robert Sutter
Source: The Washington Quarterly Volume: Autumn 2002

Abstract: Future stability in East Asia depends heavily on the relationship between the region’s main powers China and Japan. After normalizing their diplomatic relations 30 years ago, these two countries downplayed their differences in favour of mutually beneficial economics and cooperation against Soviet Expansion. Following the demise of Union of Soviet Socialist Republic and its strategic influence in East Asia, Japan and China initially continues to conduct their bilateral relations amicably. Recent friction, however, has strained the balance between them.  


Title: Regionalization of Trade and Investment in East Asia and Prospects for Further Regional Integration
Author(s): Byeong Hae Sohn
Source:
Journal of the Asia Pacific Economy Volume:
7, Number 2 / June 01, 2002

Abstract: Intra-regional trade and investment in East Asia has increased during the last few decades. These flows have accelerated again since the beginning of the 1990s. The recent trade integration in the East Asian region can be explained mainly by the more active and connecting roles of newly industrializing economies (NIEs) rather than by Japan and concentrated FDI flows within the region. Regional financial market integration also helped facilitate this process of trade and investment integration within the region. The concentrated FDI flows have led to the internationalization of production networks, of which ethnic Chinese networks have been particularly significant. East Asian economies are able to seek further regional integration based on these production networks and on newly formed local and subregional integration schemes.

 


Title: Is East Asia Integrating?
Author(s):
Joshua Kurlantzick 
Source: The Washington Quarterly Volume:  24:4, Autumn 2001  

 

Abstract:  After a prolonged phase of getting over the World War II, the East Asia over the past 15 years began to over come of its old animosities and forging economic ties. Yet, despite burgeoning economic interests Asians politicians did little to foster regionalism. It took the financial crisis which erupted in 1997 to prompt new political and security alliances. With the crisis some Asians came to the conclusion that the West was both overstating the depth of crisis and using financial institutions to prolong the Asia’s pain. Yet, because Asians were grossly underrepresented in the IMF and the World Bank, they had little recourse with in the existing financial infrastructure. Embittered several prominent Asians suggested that the Pacific Rim establish its own economic and political infrastructure. Since 1997 Asia slowly began to create its infrastructure, which began with energy cooperation, moving on to naval and other high seas cooperation. In part because China and other states realised the need to cooperate on the high seas, China , South Korea, Japan and the countries of South East Asia launched a series of “ASEAN plus Three” meetings. Asia is developing a “spaghetti of overlapping bowl ties”, extrapolating form these small steps some Asian leaders suggested its seminal meeting to produce a free trade agreement for the pacific Rim. In spring 2001, 13 Asian countries implemented a series of arrangements to exchange currency among their central banks, a move designed to inoculate the region against future financial crises. In fact, some analysts suggested that the currency exchanges could form the basis for an Asian Monetary Fund.  

 

Yet there are difficulties. As, while the financial crisis in the Pacific Rim turned some Asian countries against the West, it also pitted South East Asians against each other, with the differences between ASEAN’s haves and have-nots becoming much more prominent. Also, as Asia becomes more democratic, leaders are increasingly constrained by this popular will. Moreover, despite Beijing’s overtures to ASEAN many ordinary Asians believe regionalism will lead to Chinese dominance. Also, the Japanese government’s doubts about regionalism could impede potential breakthroughs, such as an Asian free trade zone. 

 


Title: Regional Tourism and South-South economic Cooperation
Author(s):
Krishna B. Ghimire
Source: The Geographical Journal Volume: 167 Issue 2 Page 99  - June 2001
doi: 10.1111/1475-4959.00010

Abstract: Regional tourism within developing countries is a growing phenomenon. Yet this aspect has been largely neglected in social science research as well as tourism planning. This paper highlights the general nature, scale and economic significance of regional tourism in three leading regions in Asia, Africa and Latin America. The topic is especially timely as economic self-reliance and cooperation are increasingly reiterated in the context of the emergence of regional groupings. A key question addressed is whether regional tourism development represents any new and viable prospects for regional economic improvement and partnership, especially compared to international tourism centred on attracting visitors

from industrialized countries. Based on a critical assessment of the experiences of three regional blocs (ASEAN - the Association of South-East Asian Nations; SADC - the Southern African Development Community; and Mercosur - a common market comprising Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, with Chile being an associated member), the paper suggests that a basic appreciation of the prospects of regional tourism is not enough to produce perceptible benefits. Regional tourism development is occurring in a haphazard manner, with little attention to managing existing socio-economic inequalities and centre-periphery relations. The paper is based primarily on the review of secondary literature readily available to the author combined with a few documents obtained directly from different regional organizations or through Internet search. A small amount of material, especially concerning emerging tourism trends and outcomes, is drawn from a research project on national mass tourism in developing countries coordinated by the author at the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development, Geneva.  


Title: Asian multilateral institutions and their response to the Asian Economic crisis: the regional and global implications
Author(s):
Stuart Harris
Source:
The Pacific Review  Volume: 13, Number 3 / August 1, 2000

Abstract: Asian multilateralism has been a relatively recent development. It differs from that elsewhere and reflects the history and characteristics of the region. It has been important in the growth of regional cooperation, in developing common regional interests and in the development and adherence to norms. These characteristics contributed in responding in a constructive, if limited, way to the Asian economic crisis. Nevertheless, the crisis has revealed the weaknesses of existing regional multilateral institutions and those weaknesses are often seen as raising doubts about whether those institutions can be effective in the future without major reform. Yet, although the response of the regional institutions was clearly inadequate, the region's response overall was far from negligible. Efforts to ensure regional coherence in the future by way of ASEAN, APEC and ASEAN+3 in particular are already being made to ensure greater stability in the financial sector. The region also wants to overcome its under representation in the global arena, but increased global participation, while positive, will remain supplementary to the global institutions, notably the IMF. Greater global involvement would provide, however, a more appropriate balance between regional and global contributions to future crises, since they will need to be better tailored to regional conditions and therefore depend on greater regional involvement from the start.