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Implications of the Asia-Europe Meeting for the World Trading System:An Issue-Oriented Review

Shigeyuki Abe and Michael Plummer ()
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Shigeyuki Abe: Kobe University

Kobe Economic & Business Review, 1997, vol. 41, 1-23

Abstract: The first Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) was convened in March 1996 and received strong political support from both Asian and European sides. The creation of ASEM is important in that it attempts to build a "bridge" between Asia and Europe, at the same time that regional economic integration between other major regional "poles" is taking place. In particular, APEC has emerged as an important player in defining new boundaries for economic cooperation across the Pacific. Europe has perceived APEC as a potential threat in this regard, especially since Asia is the most dynamic region in the world and EU-Asian links remain relatively weak. Asian countries are interested in strengthening relations with the EU for economic and strategic reasons. This paper evaluates the political economy of ASEM in light of the rapidly-changing global trading system. In addition to a close examination of the economic and policy dimensions of ASEM, the paper considers the future importance of ASEM to Europe and Asia. Analysis underscores the importance of APEC in driving and, most likely, defining the ultimate structure of ASEM, and explores the pivotal link played by ASEAN in both regional organizations

Keywords: ASEM; ASEAN; Economic integration; APEC; EU-Asian economic relations (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F13 F15 O52 O53 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 1997
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