Global Issues Series: 面臨人生的臨界點:從關愛之家看愛滋防護

SMART TALK ON “Northeast Asian Security Challenge”
EAI & MCSS, Center for Security Studies, Institute for International Relations,
National Chengchi University
January 21, 2011

Rise of China and the Future of the Northeast Asia Region
“ The Prospect of Multilateral Cooperation”
Jaewoo Choo (Kyung Hee University)

Anyone willing?
Regional cooperation based on multilateralism or regionalism in Northeast Asia has been an ongoing topic in the realm of International Relations over the past two decades. It seems the talks have been going on incessantly without much due action or fruition. In other words, there seems to be only “process” made, but no “progress” with respect to the development of Northeast Asian regionalism. “Process” in Northeast Asian regionalism is well witnessed particularly in the economic and trade realms as evidenced in numerous initiatives and agreements. One salient example is Chiang Mai Initiative(CMI). Talks on free trade agreement is another. However, they are all far from fruition and functioning as an entity or an institution. Regional cooperation in the security realm does not fare too well, either, if not worse. Had it not been for “Six-party talks,” it could have been worse, indeed. The US and Australia kicked off a massive joint biennial military exercise on Sunday, with Japan taking part for the first time as tensions with China over territorial rows loom over the drills.

A Critical Element Missing: Leadership
Over the years, there is one critical element that has not received much due respect in the discussion of realizing multilateral cooperation in North-East Asia. That is, leadership question. This question has been long neglected by many when discussing the prospects of regional multilateral cooperation. The reasons for this tendency are attributable to a few factors. First of all, it is often taken for granted that there is leadership at work, a factor that holds the current regional order. Given this factor, many pundits tend to seek answers to regional multilateral cooperation prospects from the studies of ideas, interests, and institutions.