Are we ready for an ASEAN Identity?

Whose “ASEAN Identity”?

When drafting or formulating an “ASEAN Identity” to be proposed to ASEAN, Indonesia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has to ask one fundamental question. Whose “ASEAN Identity”? Does Indonesia’s MoFA want to propose an ASEAN’s “ASEAN Identity” or does Indonesia’s MoFA want to propose an “ASEAN Identity with Indonesian Characteristics”?

Common Challenges

ASEAN was built on, at least, two foundations: common challenges and common objectives. And along the way, ASEAN has maintain one thing that Kishore Mahbubhani calls as the “ASEAN Miracle”.

Common Objectives

This leads to another point. ASEAN needs something to guide it in the years to come.

A Youth’s Perspective

It is impossible to get a youth’s perspective on ASEAN Identity without actually asking the young generation about it. In order to achieve that, Indonesia’s MoFA can be more active in inviting young people’s participation in this kind of discussions.

Conclusion

Of course no effort is flawless. This one, too, is not perfect. But one thing for sure, we now know that we are one step closer to defining an ASEAN Identity.

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Angelo Wijaya

Angelo Wijaya

International Relations enthusiast