The ASEAN Economy in the Regional Context: Opportunities, Challenges, and Policy Options

Publication | December 2014

ASEAN economies need to introduce a two-track strategy including domestic reforms to facilitate economic restructuring and liberalization, and initiatives to deepen and widen regional integration.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was created to address political and security issues. Over time, the economy has taken center stage and the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) is going to be launched in 2015. The AEC is a milestone promoting ASEAN economic integration and centrality, but it alone is insufficient for the group to retain relevance in an increasingly multipolar world.

This paper suggests that ASEAN needs an ambitious plan for economic integration beyond the AEC to achieve its economic development aspirations. As ASEAN designs its post-2015 agenda with a view to strengthening its role as a hub of Asian dynamism, its members need to adopt an appropriate policy mix including deep domestic structural reforms and bold actions to further deepen regional integration—transforming the AEC into a truly borderless economic community.


  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • The ASEAN Economy in the Regional Context
  • ASEAN Toward 2030
  • Opportunities and Challenges
  • Conclusion: Recommendations for ASEAN Economies
  • References

Additional Details

  • Regional cooperation and integration
  • WPS147014-2
  • 2313-5999 (Print)
  • 2313-6006 (e-ISSN)

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