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Author(s) of the publication: E. Ya. ARAPOVA

1East Asia has become one of the most promising and dynamically developing regions in the world due to the rapid growth of economies, the rapid entry of East Asian multinational corporations into the global market and the increase in their competitiveness. As in the rest of the world, the development of the modern economy is accompanied by the strengthening of integration processes. At the same time, in East Asia, especially in South-East Asia (SE), along with such "classical" processes, regional cooperation is actively developing, aimed at bringing the countries of the region closer together in order to achieve common goals.

If the "classical" type of integration involves countries going through the main stages of forming a single integration association in accordance with the concept of B. Balasha* (from the creation of a free trade zone to an economic union), then regional cooperation involves signing agreements between individual countries (on a bilateral or multilateral basis) and extends to specific spheres or sectors of the economy. Cooperation between countries in this case can be achieved by reducing barriers to cross-border economic operations, producing regional public goods, in particular, developing cross-border transport infrastructure or solving environmental problems, etc. 2

Over the past 20 years, a number of associations have been established in East Asia, driven by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which includes 10 States**.

There are 3 main scenarios for the development of integration processes in East Asia: ASEAN+1 (Association agreements with individual states); ASEAN+3 (with the "troika" - China, Japan and the Republic of Korea) - 13 states, as well as ASEAN+6, or the East Asia Summit, aimed at creating an East Asian Community. Initially, the East Asia Summit brought together 16 countries: the ASEAN " ten " and China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, India, Australia and New Zealand. Since 2011, the number of its members has increased to 18 due to the permanent accession of Russia and the United States in accordance with the decision taken during the summit in Hanoi in October 2010.***

The Association has already signed separate agreements with all 6 East Asian States that were full participants of the East Asia Summit at the time of its establishment in 2005-China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Australia and New Zealand, as well as India. All concluded agreements are Free Trade Area (FTA) and Free Trade Area and Economic Integration Agreement (FTA & EIA) type agreements, i.e. trade in services (banking, insurance, transport, construction, etc.), as well as gradual liberalization of investment activities are also subject to the provisions of the concluded agreements. 3.

However, the question of what East Asia will look like in the future remains open.

Will it be possible to form an East Asian Community, and if so, will it be limited to just 13 states in the ASEAN+3 format, or will it include other states-Australia, New Zealand, India, the United States, and Russia?


The problem of choosing the path of economic development of the region arose back in 1981, when the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Mahathir Mohammad, proposed the concept of" Asianization of Asia " called Look East ("Look East").Orient yourself to the East"). He called on Asian countries to develop according to the Japanese model and make a cent-

* Bela Balasha, an American economist, has formulated a number of fundamental conclusions that form the foundation of the theory of economic integration (editor's note).
* * ASEAN is a political, economic and cultural regional intergovernmental organization of countries located in Southeast Asia. It includes Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

*** For more information, see: Lokshin G. M. Russia-ASEAN: new projects and formats of cooperation / / Asia and Africa Today, 2011, No. 2 (editor's note).
page 33
The Regional Economic Cooperation Forum was held in Japan, which was then experiencing a long period of rapid economic growth. This concept originally formed the basis of the ASEAN+3 format.

The decision to hold an informal meeting of the ASEAN heads of State, to which the leaders of the "troika"-Japan, China and South Korea - were also invited, was made in Kuala Lumpur in December 1997, at the height of the Asian financial crisis, when the initial reluctance of ASEAN to move closer to non-Asian countries in the Asia-Pacific region sharply increased (Asia-Pacific Region). No joint declarations were adopted in Kuala Lumpur and no agreement was reached on the continued existence of the ASEAN+3 format.

The informal approach to meetings and negotiations continued after the formation of ASEAN+3.

In the light of the Asian financial crisis, the financial sector has become the main direction for the development of integration processes in a new format. At the same time, Japan proposed the creation of an Asian Monetary Fund, but the implementation of the idea was postponed largely for political reasons and due to opposition from some Western countries and interstate financial institutions, in particular the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

One of the first achievements of ASEAN+3 integration was the development of an action plan in the context of financial crises. 5 ASEAN countries (Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand) have entered into a Credit swap Agreement*, creating a system that allows a country whose currency is under heavy pressure ("attack") on the part of exchange speculators, to obtain foreign currency for conducting interventions secured by government securities.

In May 2000. All ASEAN countries, as well as China, Japan and South Korea, signed agreements in Thailand to expand the scope of this mechanism, which are called the Chiang Mai Initiative 4.

In essence, the Initiative is the creation of a reserve currency fund, which allows participating countries to avoid an acute crisis and the need to appeal to international organizations. The Chiang Mai initiative was substantially refined in May 2006, and the swap size was almost doubled from $39.9 billion. up to $75 billion. Due to the global financial and economic crisis, the Fund's funds were increased to $120 billion in 2009.

Another achievement of ASEAN+3 in the area of financial cooperation was the establishment of the Asian Bond Markets Initiative Working Group in August 2003. An action plan for creating such a market was proposed by Seoul and agreed at the ASEAN+3 meeting in Istanbul on May 4, 2005. It is called the "Roadmap Structure for the Asian Bond Format based on the Eurobond Format Model" contained in the Asian Bond Standards. This document is a conceptual draft with a detailed description of the rules for issuing procedures, placement of securities, regulatory framework, settlements, tax system, registration of documents, electronic disclosure of information, documentation, reporting standards and credit rating 5. In September 2010, the Asian Bond Market Forum 6 was established.

Since June 2003, the Asian Bond Fund-1 has been operating, with an initial volume of $1 billion.

The concept of the Asian Bond Market was expanded in 2005 with the introduction of the Asian Bond Fund-2.

On May 1, 2011, the ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office was launched to expand and strengthen the existing Chiang Mai 7 Initiative.


At the ASEAN+3 meeting in Phnom Penh in 2002, China initiated the creation of a North-East Free Trade Area between Japan, China and the Republic of Korea, which was supposed to be an important step towards the formation of a unified East Asian Free trade area.

At the 4th meeting of the leaders of China, Japan and the Republic of Korea with the participation of Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China Wen Jiabao, Prime Minister of Japan Naoto Kan and President of the Republic of Korea Lee Myung-bak, held on May 21, 2011 in Tokyo, the Chinese Premier announced that official negotiations on the creation of a free trade zone and the Republic of Korea is expected in 2012.8

In 2007, the ASEAN+3 Cooperation Work Plan (2007-2017) was developed, outlining the main areas of cooperation and deepening integration processes. The work plan includes a number of areas, ranging from gradual liberalization of regional trade and investment cooperation to cooperation in supporting small and medium-sized businesses and developing information technologies.9
During the meetings at the level of heads of State and Government in Hanoi, considerable attention was paid not only to expanding financial cooperation, but also to a number of other areas. The ASEAN+3 Trade Liberalization Action Plan, a draft of which was submitted by China, was approved, as well as the proposed strategy for Trade liberalization among ASEAN + 3 countries.

* Swap (English swap - exchange) - a trade and financial exchange operation in which the conclusion of a transaction on the purchase (sale) of currency (or securities and other assets) is accompanied by the conclusion of a counter-transaction, a transaction on the repurchase (purchase) of currency after a certain period (editor's note).
page 34
ASEAN + 3 Working Groups Japan's vision "First Steps towards Regional Economic Integration in East Asia: a Consistent Approach" 10.

During the summit, special attention was paid to projects for the development of transport links within the Association. In particular, it was decided to implement the ASEAN Multilateral Agreement on Full Liberalization of Passenger Air Transportation and the ASEAN Strategic Transport Plan (2011-2015) 11, which provides for the construction and reconstruction of roads and structures, laying communications and implementing other infrastructure projects. The ASEAN Small and Medium - Sized Business Development Strategic Action Plan 2010-2015 was also approved and is being implemented as a successor to the ASEAN Small and Medium-Sized Business Development Policy Project 2004-2014. 12

Thus, in recent years, ASEAN+3 has evolved from a structure that promotes exclusively financial cooperation to an association with a wide range of activities that can serve as a basis for forming a full-fledged integration group.


At the ASEAN Summit in Kuala Lumpur in December 2005, it was decided to create a regional organization with broad powers - the East Asia Community (EAC). At the same time, the first East Asia Summit (EAS) was held, bringing together 16 member states of the ASEAN+3 format, as well as India, Australia and New Zealand.

The inclusion of Australia, New Zealand and India in the process of creating a multilateral free trade area is largely due to a fairly high degree of interdependence in the field of trade. The expansion of the FTA to 16 member countries may be beneficial for the ASEAN countries, since it is with Australia, New Zealand and India that this integration grouping has a positive trade balance. 13
However, the creation of the Institute of East Asian Summits was not only due to the high level of intraregional trade. Due to the growing concerns of the ASEAN countries about a possible shortage of energy resources, which is associated with the unstable situation in the Middle East, it became necessary to reduce dependence on this region and reorient it to its closest partners, the main one in the field of energy is Australia. Singapore, Thailand, and later China and Malaysia began to show interest in creating an FTA with this country. In November 2004, Australia was invited to a bilateral summit with ASEAN, during which it was agreed to start negotiations on a free trade agreement (FTA) between Australia, New Zealand and ASEAN.

At the 2nd East Asia Summit, held in Cebu, Philippines, in January 2007, China proposed that the ASEAN+3 format should be the foundation for building the East Asian Community. Since then, ASEAN+3 has been seen as an intermediate step towards the creation of a single region-wide free trade area and the East Asian Community. Thus, at the 13th ASEAN+3 Summit in Hanoi in October 2010, it was emphasized that "ASEAN+3, with ASEAN as the main driving force, will remain the main instrument in achieving the long-term goal of building an East Asian Community and promoting the sustainable development of the region" 14.

A major achievement of the 2nd East Asia Summit was the signing of the "Energy Security Declaration". The countries participating in this summit expressed their readiness "to make efforts to reduce dependence on traditional energy sources by optimizing the use of energy resources and saving them, improving the efficiency of using mineral energy resources and reducing the impact on the environment, creating open and competitive regional and international markets, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, encouraging investment in energy production and infrastructure construction." through broad involvement of the private sector. To solve these problems, it is planned to create an EAC Task Force on Energy Cooperation " 15.

An important task of cooperation in the energy sector is to ensure stable energy supplies between the summit countries by investing in regional energy infrastructure (the Trans-Asean gas pipeline, the ASEAN Joint Energy System), enhancing cooperation in research and development, as well as financing energy projects. However, the implementation of the initiative is associated with a number of difficulties: differences in the level of political and economic development of the Asia-Pacific countries, the isolation and isolation of their energy systems, and the lack of financial resources due to the fact that energy is one of the most capital-intensive industries.

According to some experts, one of the most promising ways of cooperation in the energy sector may be trade in liquefied natural gas16. In this area, the countries of the Asia-Pacific region have a significant weight on the world market both from the supply and demand side. To date, significant capacities are available-

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Indonesia, Australia, and Malaysia have liquefied natural gas production facilities. In addition, Japan plays an active role in the formation and development of this high-tech industry.

The 3rd East Asia Summit, held in Singapore in November 2007, was of great importance. This consisted primarily in developing the main directions for building the East Asian Community, which include 6 promising areas for expanding integration processes: from energy security to cooperation in the field of education and environmental protection. But the most promising area of cooperation between the two countries is still the energy sector.

The 4th East Asia Summit, postponed several times due to anti-government protests in Thailand, was mostly limited to reviewing current regional and global developments, as well as joint disaster management. 17
During the 5th East Asia Summit held in October 2010, the participating countries expressed satisfaction with the development of cooperation, especially in priority sectors such as finance, education, energy, disaster management and prevention of the spread of avian influenza.

The statement of the President of the 5th EAC emphasized the need to expand regional cooperation in the field of energy, increase transparency in energy trade and investment in this sector of the economy, establish a dialogue between the main producers and consumers of energy resources, encourage private sector participation in the development of alternative energy sources, etc. 18

In the field of education, student exchange projects between universities of the participating countries and scholarship programs are actively developing. Special attention should be paid to Japan's initiative to build an East Asia Science & Innovation Area and its proposal to hold an informal ministerial meeting on science and technological development.19

ASEAN+3 is on the path of building a 13-state FTA, and the chances of creating such an integration association are quite high, although there are differences between China and Japan regarding the role of the United States in this process.

Despite the intensification of cooperation in the framework of 16 East Asian states and the existence of a common strategic goal, there is still no single concrete action plan for creating a full-fledged integration grouping (i.e., a free trade zone) represented by the East Asian Community. Joining the East Asia Summit on a permanent basis between Russia and the United States may also complicate the process of forming such a grouping.

The legal framework for the association within the EAC has not yet been established and is unlikely to be established in the coming years.

From all this, it can be concluded that for a long period of time, the structures of ASEAN+3 and EAC will function in parallel, along with other associations, such as, in particular, the Asia-Pacific Cooperation Forum (APEC).

Participants of the East Asian summits have different views on the future of integration processes in the region. Conventionally, the concepts of possible development of regional cooperation can be divided into 2 groups: "intensive" and "extensive" ways.

The "intensive" direction implies the creation of a full-fledged free trade zone, but membership in this FTA should be limited to 13 states within the framework of the ASEAN+3 format.

Adherents of the "extensive" approach, which involves the signing of bilateral and multilateral agreements in certain areas of cooperation, are Japan and the United States. The main advantage of this approach is the inclusion of a larger number of countries that will expand cooperation in the most promising areas of development. According to the proponents of the concept, this form of interaction will help to minimize the losses that will certainly arise when creating a single region-wide FTA for states that are not members of it. What the United States is proposing can be called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) concept. Japan also proposed a different term - Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).


China supports an "intensive" path and the creation of an FTA in the future within the framework of 13 Asian states, which should be preceded by strengthening the position of the PRC in the ASEAN+1 format.

China's FTA with ASEAN, which came into force on January 1, 2010, has already produced tangible results. In particular, in 2010, the volume of mutual trade turnover between China and ASEAN reached $293 billion, an increase of 37.5%. At the same time, China's exports to the ASEAN countries amounted to $138.2 billion, and imports from the Association countries - $154.6 billion (i.e., ASEAN managed to reduce the trade balance in relations with China with a surplus of $16.4 billion). Gross investment in China from ASEAN countries increased by 50% in 2010 to $11.8 billion.20
page 36
Further development of integration within the framework of the East Asia Summit with the participation of 16 states is much less in Beijing's interests: the creation of a region-wide FTA with the participation of India, Australia and New Zealand can significantly weaken China's position.

China is more relaxed about regional cooperation across the Asia-Pacific region. First, because the expansion of the dialogue in certain areas can be beneficial for the country. Secondly, this process is inevitable, and, according to Premier Wen Jiabao, who opened the first East Asia Summit on December 14, 2005, it is "an objective requirement of economic globalization and the acceleration of regional cooperation, a natural result of the interdependence and continuous expansion of common interests of various countries in the region" 21.

The East Asia Summit is viewed by China primarily as a "platform for consultations on relations between countries", but not as a basis for forming a full-fledged free trade zone. China's proposals to take measures aimed at creating a full-fledged integration association are made exclusively within the framework of the ASEAN summits+3. Thus, during the summit in Hanoi, which took place on October 29, 2010, the participating countries approved the Action Plan for Trade Liberalization between the ASEAN countries and the Troika, which was submitted for consideration by the Chinese side.


China's main competitor in East Asia in the struggle for economic leadership today is Japan, which, as the largest investor and the main competitor of China for influence in the region in this area, expresses extreme concern about its desire to become a driving force for economic development in East Asia. Both China and Japan claim to be the "locomotive" of integration processes in the region.

FTAs with ASEAN countries (on a bilateral and multilateral basis) Japan entered into agreements "in response" to the agreements reached by China. Tokyo also supports the United States, which seeks to actively influence the integration processes in the region. Japan encourages Australia, New Zealand and India to join the grouping, that is, the creation of an expanded East Asian Community, since in this format it can create a serious counterweight to China's influence.

Promoting the concept of "open regionalism", at the ASEAN Ministerial Meeting in July 2004, Japan initiated the organization of EAC and the expansion of cooperation within the framework of 16 states.

At the 5th EAC Summit in October 2010, the then Prime Minister of Japan, Naoto Kan, presented the concept of "First Steps towards regional Economic Integration in East Asia: a consistent approach" in the format of the entire region. As possible" allies " of Tokyo, some ASEAN states may act, which are interested, on the one hand, in maintaining relations with the United States, and on the other - in their own economic and political independence and curbing the growing influence of China.

These states include Singapore, in particular, which is aware of the possible benefits of cooperation between a larger number of participants in the integration grouping and considers the East Asian Community with the participation of Australia, New Zealand and India as the optimal format. 22 Japan is also expanding cooperation with the latter. In particular, the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with India was signed on February 16, 201123.

Mr. Kang also pays considerable attention to the development of financial cooperation (including the implementation of the Chiang Mai Initiative), which was repeatedly emphasized during the ASEAN+3 Summit in October 2010.

In many ways, the format of integration cooperation between countries in the region depends on the position of the ASEAN countries. Within this group, there is no consensus on the optimal format of cooperation.

Thus, Malaysia supports China's position, suggesting that first of all focus on the formation of a full-fledged FTA within the framework of ASEAN+3, and only then think about accepting new members. Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad put forward the concept of an "East Asian Economic Group" with the participation of exclusively Asian countries. The Philippines holds the same position. From the point of view of these states, strengthening cooperation and developing towards institutionalization in the ASEAN+3 format will help strengthen the position of the Association itself in East Asia.

In turn, Singapore, which pays more attention to expanding its own economic ties than to politics, is also interested in expanding cooperation within the entire Asia-Pacific region, since it already has well-established ties and developing relations not only with the countries of the region, but also beyond its borders.24
The approach of the Republic of Korea to determining the optimal format of cooperation can be called multidimensional. On the one hand, it is a full member of both ASEAN+3 and EAC, and the FTA with ASEAN countries has also entered into force. On the other hand, South Korea is still focused on expansion-

page 37
cooperation with third countries. This is evidenced by its active participation in FTA formation processes with countries such as Chile and the European Free Trade Association, and efforts have also been made to reach similar agreements with Canada25.

In addition, one of the priorities of the Republic of Korea's foreign economic policy is the signing of a free trade agreement with the United States. Joint work in this area has been underway since 2005, and the first round of negotiations was organized in the United States in June 2006. In December 2010, a significant breakthrough was achieved in the direction of creating an FTA, when a personal meeting between Presidents Barack Obama and Lee Myung-bak managed to reach agreements on trade in cars and beef, differences in positions on which were the main obstacle to the creation of an FTA. 26 The parties ' positions were brought closer by the aggravation of the situation on the Korean Peninsula in 2010. related to the sinking of the South Korean frigate Cheonan, the shelling of Yeonpyeong Island, and the US-South Korean maneuvers in the Yellow Sea*.

In recent years, Australia has become particularly active in defending its own interests in expanding integration processes in the region. Initially, together with the United States, it was the author and initiator of promoting the concept of "open regionalism"and expanding cooperation within APEC.

In June 2008, Australian Prime Minister Rudd launched an initiative to create an Asia-Pacific Community (APCU) by 2020. This refers to the inclusion in the new structure of the United States, China, Japan, India and other countries in the region, primarily on the basis of APEC.

Moreover, the goals of creating an automatic telephone exchange are quite extensive and relate not only to purely economic issues, such as conducting a non-discriminatory trade policy, ensuring energy and food security, but also to political issues, including ensuring regional security. It is assumed that the United States should become the main center for maintaining peace and stability, while Australia opposed Russia's participation in the EAC and regional integration.

But neither ASEAN countries such as Singapore and Thailand, nor China, are interested in strengthening US political dominance in the region. Therefore, the idea of forming an automatic telephone exchange is likely to remain a project and will not be seriously considered as one of the possible scenarios for the development of integration processes in the vATR.

If earlier the concepts of ACE-EN+3 and ASEAN+6 (EAC) were considered as alternatives to each other, recently more and more people say that these are just two stages of the same process. In other words, the ASEAN-Troika FTA should precede the formation of a single region-wide FTA in the format of 16 (including India, Australia, and New Zealand) or 18 (with the United States and Russia) states.

However, in reality, the development of integration under such a scenario is very problematic, given Beijing's commitment to the concept of "Asianization of Asia" and the expansion of cooperation in the 13-state format, without "non-Central Asian" countries. Parallel development is more likely, at least in the coming years.

1 ASEAN at the beginning of the 21st century. Aktual'nye problemy i perspektivy [Actual problems and prospects]. Moscow, IDV RAS, 2010, pp. 6-7.

2 System of indicators of Eurasian integration. ЕАБР, 2009, с. 35 - 35E-2C5E-4F06 - 9AF7 - 3B07E2B2163F

3 Regional Trade Agreements. The WTO Rules -; WTO Analytical Index: General Agreement on Trade in Services -

Butorina O. V. 4 Budushchie izmeneniya v mezhdunarodnoi zhurnal'noi sisteme [Future changes in the international currency system]. Reports of the Institute of Europe. RAS, 2004, p. 12.

5 Ibidem.

Hong Bum Jang. 6 Financial Integration and Cooperation in East Asia // Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies Bank of Japan, Tokyo, February 2011, p. 13.


8 Website of the Chinese Foreign Ministry. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of People's Republic of China. Broad Prospects for Win-Win Cooperation Between China, Japan and the ROK. Remarks by H.E. Wen Jiabao Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China At the Lunch Meeting of the Third Trilateral Business Summit. Tokyo, 22.05.2011 - www.fmprc.

9 Asian Plus Three Cooperation Work Plan (2007 - 2017).

10 Ibidem, p. 2.

11 Ibidem.

12 Ibid., p. 3.

13 Statistical analysis of the ASEAN Community in Figures 2009, p. 10.

14 Chairman's Statement of the 13th ASEAN Plus Three Summit // Ha noi, Viet Nam, 29 October 2010.

15 Bulletin of Economic Information based on the materials of the Chinese Press, March 2008, p. 49.

Belyaev L. S. 16, Lagerev A.V., Posekalin V. V. et al. Energy of the 21st century: development conditions, technologies, forecasts. Novosibirsk, 2004, pp. 42-43.

17 Chairman's Statement of the 4tn East Asia Summit // Cha-am Hua Hin, Thailand, 25.10.2009 - - 08_EAS%20Statement.pdf

18 Ibidem.

19 Chairman's Statement of the East Asia Summit (EAS) // Ha Noi, Viet Nam, 30 October 2010.



Dinh Thi Hien Luong. 22 Regional Powers and the Building of an East Asian Community. Center for Northeast Asian Studies, Institute for International Relations, 2007, p. 7.


Dinh Thi Hien Luong. 24 Op. cit.


26 7r6912

* For more information, see: Rusakov E. M. "... holding a big club in your hands " / / Asia and Africa Today, 2011, No. 3 (editor's note).


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