ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon Twitter
Economy

ASEAN can learn from the EU's integration successes and setbacks

 (placeholder image)
U.S. President Barack Obama, center, is flanked by ASEAN leaders at a summit in Rancho Mirage, California, on February 16.   © Reuters

A generation or two ago, university courses in Southeast Asia compared the fledgling cooperation of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to Europe's impressive integration. Southeast Asia's aspirational regionalism then was inspired and informed by Europe's methodical climb from a postwar customs union to an expanded "single market" and eventually a full-fledged political and economic entity with collective security and defense policies, relatively borderless populations and a single currency.

This is no longer the case. Brexit, the U.K.'s decision to go it alone after a 43-year membership in the European Union, is merely the latest manifestation of Europe's unappealing mixture of debt and financial destruction, migration and refugee influxes, and sporadic jihadi terror, among other foreboding crises. Yet for ASEAN, as the central platform for regional order-building in Asia, Europe after Brexit is instructive for the future navigation and direction for the 10-member group and for the rest of Asia.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

Discover the all new Nikkei Asia app

  • Take your reading anywhere with offline reading functions
  • Never miss a story with breaking news alerts
  • Customize your reading experience

Nikkei Asian Review, now known as Nikkei Asia, will be the voice of the Asian Century.

Celebrate our next chapter
Free access for everyone - Sep. 30

Find out more