Indonesia’s Chair in the ASEAN Summit Encourages Peace and Stability
By: Wina Arifah )*
ASEAN ( Association of Southeast Asian Nations ) as a regional organization consists of 11 countries in Southeast Asia, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Brunei Darussalam, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia and Timor Leste. The organization was founded in 1967 to enhance economic, political, social and cultural cooperation between its member countries. As one of the founding countries and the largest member of ASEAN, Indonesia has played an important role in promoting peace and stability in this region, especially since this year Indonesia is playing its role again through its leadership as the host of the ASEAN Summit.
Since first becoming Chair of ASEAN in 1976, Indonesia has been active in promoting regional cooperation and peace in Southeast Asia. As a large and influential country in this region, Indonesia has a great responsibility in maintaining stability and security in this region. This is reflected in the various diplomatic and collaborative efforts undertaken by Indonesia in the ASEAN forum.
One of the most important efforts made by Indonesia in promoting peace and stability in ASEAN is by promoting dialogue and cooperation between member countries. Indonesia has been active in initiating dialogue between countries that have conflicts and seeking peaceful solutions to existing problems. For example, in the case of conflict between Cambodia and Thailand in 2011, Indonesia managed to mediate the conflict and helped reach a peace agreement between the two countries.
In addition, Indonesia has also played a role in developing regional cooperation mechanisms to strengthen stability and security in ASEAN. For example, Indonesia has played an important role in the establishment of the Zone of Peace and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (ZOPFAN) in 1971 and the ASEAN Dispute Settlement Mechanism (AMM) in 1976. Both of these mechanisms aim to enhance cooperation between ASEAN member countries and promote peace. and stability in this region.
So far, Indonesia has also been active in promoting regional cooperation in the security and defense sector. Indonesia has led initiatives to enhance cooperation in the field of defense between ASEAN member countries, including through the establishment of the ASEAN Regional Security Forum (ARF) in 1994 and Concrete Steps to Enhance ASEAN Defense Cooperation (ACDM) in 2006.
Now, for the umpteenth time, Indonesia has been re-elected as chairman of the ASEAN Summit with the theme “ASEAN Matters: Epicentrum of Growth” which means that Indonesia wants to make ASEAN remain important and relevant to the ASEAN community and the world. This is because, Indonesia wants to make ASEAN a region that has an important role, for regional countries and the world. Both play a central role as the engine of peace and prosperity in the region. In addition, Indonesia wants to enhance ASEAN’s role as a significant region that contributes to the welfare of the region and the world.
On the other hand, hosting such an event also gives Indonesia a unique opportunity to showcase its culture and economic achievements. Indonesia can use this event as a platform to promote the country’s tourism industry which has been steadily growing in recent years. It is hoped that this will become an important platform for Indonesia to showcase its strengths and capabilities on the international stage, as well as strengthening Indonesia’s position in ASEAN.
Furthermore, this Summit will provide an opportunity for member countries to develop a common vision and strategy to achieve stability, prosperity and growth in Southeast Asia, as well as promote cooperation between countries. In addition, the Summit will enable ASEAN member countries to discuss and address common challenges faced by the region such as climate change, security, economic inequality and geopolitical tensions.
Indonesia views ASEAN as a central player in promoting regional peace and prosperity as well as being a center of economic growth for the region and the world. To achieve this, three pillars of economic priority have been established, namely: Recover-Rebuilding, Digital Economy, and Sustainability.
The Recover-Rebuilding pillar aims to explore a variety of well-planned and well-communicated policies to ensure economic recovery and growth while mitigating risks such as inflation and volatility in capital flows.
The Digital Economy Pillar focuses on strengthening financial inclusion and literacy through increasing the capacity of each member to formulate a national financial education strategy and improve regional payment system interconnectivity.
Lastly, the Sustainability pillar aims to prepare for and move towards a green economy transition, especially given the ASEAN region’s vulnerability to natural disasters and climate risks. This includes initiatives such as the ASEAN Taxonomy on Sustainable Finance and the Study on the Role of Central Banks in Managing Climate and Environment-Related Risk.
Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Management IPB Prof. Dr. Nunung Nuryartono once expressed optimism that the Government would be successful in holding the ASEAN Summit on 9-11 May 2023 in Labuan Bajo, East Nusa Tenggara, which would have an economic impact.
As a whole, 8% of the world’s population in Asean countries, according to Prof. Nunung, is an attractive market for the products produced and drives the world economy.
While continuing to explore and discuss the ASEAN Chairmanship 2023, let us show our support for Indonesia’s success in leading the ASEAN community towards greater peace, stability and prosperity.
)* The author is an economic observer