Abstract

Abstract:

This article proposes a theory that the strategic preferences of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members should be a key variable in explaining the ASEAN integration process over the last four decades. ASEAN integration will not progress as rapidly and substantially as many of its leaders claim unless there are remarkable developments in factors that affect the underlying preferences of ASEAN states, such as a significant increase in intra-ASEAN trade and investment, a much stronger pressure from domestic businesses for deeper integration, or external shocks that threaten the region’s economic growth. While the progressive path of European integration illustrates that an independent and strong supranational institution is necessary to handle the complex processes of regional integration, the strategic-preference theory of ASEAN integration presented here predicts that this will not be the top policy priority of its leaders in the near future.

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Additional Information

ISSN
2288-2871
Print ISSN
0258-9184
Pages
pp. 407-435
Launched on MUSE
2019-01-22
Open Access
No
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