International Organizations

Is the IMF Overstretched?

The Annual Meetings of the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Lima, Peru have now concluded. This year’s meetings saw debates on the normalisation of US monetary policy, China’s new growth model, emerging market vulnerabilities and the post-2015 development agenda. There is still no obvious solution to a major thorn in the IMF’s side — the failure to implement long-awaited quota and governance reforms, which would give a greater voice to developing nations.

Realizing the 'Chinese Dream' with the AIIB

As of October, fifty-one prospective founding members signed the China-initiated Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) Articles of Agreement, which expects to be operational by the end of 2015. China has generally been cooperative with and supportive of Bretton Woods multilateral institutions. At the same time, it is frustrated that the existing multilateral institutions set the limits for its global ambitions. The slow pace of reforms at the Western-dominated IMF and World Bank prevents China and other emerging economies from playing a bigger role in international political economy.

Should Greece Serve as a Warning to ASEAN Leaders?

The Greek crisis has periodically dominated international headlines since 2009, when its economic and fiscal crunch led to a series of debt downgrades and ushered in fears of default. So what lessons does the crisis hold for the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC)?

Is ASEAN Spreading Itself too Thin?

Pundits and policymakers increasingly see changing great-power politics in Asia as a challenge to ASEAN. China’s growing military assertiveness in the South China Sea, the US ‘rebalancing’ strategy, Japan’s moves to reinterpret its constitution, and India’s growing military presence and assertive diplomacy all press upon ASEAN’s choices in the region.

China is not ASEAN's Bad Guy

Ongoing disputes in the South China Sea between China and four ASEAN member nations — Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam — have dealt a major blow to the centrality and unity of ASEAN. Internal differences were on public display during the ASEAN Foreign Ministers Summit in 2012, leading to the non-issuance of the joint communiqué for the first time in ASEAN’s 45 years of existence.

BRICS Building

What started, as a pompous affair of five nations coming together in support of one another’s infrastructural needs, now appears to be more of a promotional event.

G20, Meet President China

The world’s ‘steering committee’ often refers to the G20 and in less than five months, China will be firmly behind the wheel. At recent G20 summits and meetings in Beijing and Shanghai, government officials, academics and business representatives were asking two questions: what should China do with its G20 presidency and what sort of leader will it be?

ASEAN's Three C's

Southeast Asia looks set to usher in a new era of cooperation and stability following the ASEAN Foreign Ministers meeting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in early August. But significant challenges to regional integration remain and the risk is that ambitious claims may outstrip the capacity to deliver.

Where a Good Originates is of Great Importance to ASEAN

Asia accounts for more than 50 percent of the world’s automobile production, 62 percent of liquid display screen, 86 percent of smart phones and 100 percent of digital cameras. Much of this production is based on production networks: that is, value chains that crisscross the region, with the various stages of the production of each good taking place in different countries, depending on the comparative advantage of each.

Waiting on the ASEAN for the AEC

The ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) is set to arrive at the end of 2015. It is a significant step forward and could be a crucial turning point for ASEAN. However, without a strong central authority and mandate, ASEAN integration will remain in a mess and the AEC remain an illusion.

The goal of the AEC is to implement economic integration initiatives by creating a single market across ASEAN nations. This requires a strong central authority that can harmonise and standardise regional regulations, and it must be recognised by all member countries.