Crisis Management in the ASEAN + 3 Countries
Migration: In Search for Proper Management
 
Introduction
 
A crisis is “specific, unexpected and non-routine events or series of events that create high levels of uncertainty or threat or perceived threat to an organisation’s high priority goals”.[1]  For ASEAN (and + Three), the “high priority goals” are to create “an organisation that would help bring about a Southeast Asian region of peace, freedom and prosperity for our peoples”.[2]  This reflects ASEAN’s “desire and collective will to live in a region of lasting peace, security and stability, sustained economic growth, shared prosperity and social progress, as well as promote ASEAN interests, ideals and aspirations”.[3]   However, within ASEAN, there exist a number of “crises” and mini-crises” which arise from “highly complex circumstances”. Such crises tend to take place in a political space, where the level of states’ preparedness and responses are crucial. Many of these situations may be “intense, deadlocked, and extremely difficult to resolve” such as man-made and natural disasters, disputes over the South China Sea, mixed and forced migration, various health risks, etc. Some attract the attention of the international community such as the case of irregular movement in the Andaman Sea but, often times, interest has faded away until the crisis re-emerged. Such crises do not just affect neighbouring countries or regions, but they could become threats to the very purposes of the region and its dialogue partners themselves. Crisis management is the procedure through which states and organizations interact in striving to effectively react to an emergency that threatens the safety and well-being of the people.[4]  Without proper management, the crises mentioned earlier will definitely hinder the “high priority goals” which are peace, security, prosperity and the social progress of ASEAN and beyond.
 
For the full text of the report, click here.

Network of East Asian Think-Tanks

The Network of East Asian Think-tanks

     
Officially recognized at the “10+3" summit meeting, Network of East Asian Think-tanks (NEAT) is a mechanism for research and academic exchange, and a platform for the second-track diplomacy in the regional cooperation among “10+3" countries in East Asia. It aims at integrating the research resources in East Asia, promoting the academic exchanges and providing intellectual support for East Asian cooperation. To be more specific, by establishing a network among East Asian think-tanks, governments and enterprises and promoting the interaction of these three circles, it intends to study the key issues related to East Asian cooperation, work out strategic ideas and concrete policy suggestions for the regional integration and submit research reports to the “10+3" summit meeting.
 
In 2002, East Asian Studies Group (EASG), the second-track in the mechanism of East Asian cooperation, suggested 17 short-term measures to be taken for closer cooperation among East Asian nations, among which was establishing “Network of East Asian Think-tanks" (NEAT) within the framework of “10+3" regional cooperation. The suggestion was adopted at the informal meeting of “10+3"leaders held in Phnom PenhCambodia in September 2002.
 
The activities of NEAT fall into the following categories: 1) Hold annual conferences of NEAT members to promote exchanges among East Asian think tanks and submit an annual work report to the informal meeting of “10+3" leaders on the basis of the research of the key issues in East Asian integration process; 2) Set up a website of NEAT, bridging the governments with the academic circles, promoting the academic exchanges among scholars about East Asia, and educating the masses in the region; 3) Hold irregular international seminars on East Asian cooperation so as to facilitate the theoretic research on the integration and community building of East Asia and help to shape the theoretic framework, strategies and specific policies conducive to the regional cooperation in East Asia. 4) Cooperate in the research of the key issues in regional cooperation and figure out the solutions.
 
The founding as well as the first annual conference of NEAT was held in Beijing from September 29 to 30, 2003. There were delegates from the think tanks of all the member states at the conference. The three topics discussed were “Towards East Asian Cooperation", Important Steps Leading to East Asian Cooperation" and “Key Areas in East Asia Cooperation". The conference report was not only published, but also distributed at the “10+3" leaders meeting in 2003.