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Over the last decade, the global economic and strategic balance has been shifting eastwards. Asia is the largest and the most populous continent, with China and India alone already accounting for one-third of the global population. Asia is home to some of the world’s most dynamic and fastest growing economies, but also to some most complex security hotspots. From tensions on the Korean Peninsula to maritime territorial disputes in the East and South China Seas, there are a number of issues which have the potential to spark more serious conflict. The rise of China is affecting the balance of power in the region, and has resulted in increased competition with the US for influence. This is also increasingly visible in the Indian Ocean, which has become a new theatre of strategic competition between China and India. While there are various multilateral cooperative mechanisms in the region, such as the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) or the East Asia Summit, their capacity to address such security issues remains limited.

As a key trading partner of many Asian economies, the EU has a major stake in regional stability, as well as in the security of its Sea Lanes of Communication. Since announcing its ‘pivot to Asia’ in 2012, Brussels has been trying to step up its security role in Asia by boosting cooperation with its various Strategic Partners, as well as through existing multilateral fora. The EUISS has been working to support these efforts by providing relevant expertise and analysis and conducting research in domains that have the potential to enhance regional stability and raise the EU’s security profile. Key areas of focus are maritime security and governance, preventive diplomacy, confidence and capacity building, crisis prevention, multilateralism, regional integration and institution building.

For the recent EUISS mini podcast series on China, click here.


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    06June 2011

    Ce Report est le fruit d’une première coopération entre le Comité international de la Croix-Rouge et l’IESUE visant à développer des échanges mutuellement bénéfiques entre le CICR, l’Union européenne et d’autres acteurs concernés par des problématiques humanitaires.

  • 22February 2011

    The seminar, held in Washington D.C. on 22-23 February 2011, addressed the most critical questions confronting the international community with respect to the impending transition of Afghanistan from a military-led international response zone to a sphere characterised by responsible local ownership of peacebuilding.

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    15February 2011

    Recent security developments in East Asia have raised questions about peace and stability in a part of the world accounting for over a quarter of EU global trade. This Policy Brief assesses the changing power relations in East Asia and highlights potential implications of the region's security flashpoints for the EU.

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    18January 2011

    In this quarter's issue, The Economist's Anton La Guardia proposes a unique role for the EU in the Arab-Israeli conflict, Nicola Casarini says the EU should get more involved in East Asia, and Álvaro de Vasconcelos forwards the case for better preventing conflict.

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    09November 2010

    Is there an Asian approach to peacebuilding? In this paper, the author explores what characterises the Asian approach while aiming to discern to what extent Western-dominated mainstream views of peacebuilding are applicable to Asian countries.

  • 27October 2010

    Co-organised with the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations and taking place in Paris on 27 October 2010, this seminar focused on the economic and regional crises facing both the EU and China, and finding a common approach for Africa.

  • 11October 2010

    The annual India-EU forum on effective multilateralism aims to enhance the multilateral external dimension of the partnership between the EU and India by facilitating an exchange of views between policymakers and experts from both Europe and the Indian subcontinent.

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    30September 2010

    China has become a central player on the world stage. Understanding the future direction of its foreign policy and the role it will play in international affairs is becoming increasingly important. Zhu Liqun, Vice-President of the China Foreign Affairs University, provides an in-depth and authoritative examination of China’s foreign policy debate and offers concrete examples of changes in attitude among China’s elite.

  • 19September 2010

    Against the background of China’s ascent as a major economic power, this Chaillot Paper offers a unique overview of the debates on foreign policy that have taken place in China over the past decade. It analyses the main trends in the domestic strategic debate and the extent to which they are likely to shape China’s role in the international arena.

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    09November 2009

    In Indonesia, on the twentieth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, Helga Schmid was reminded of its impact on Asia, where many of the success stories of the post-1989 world can be found.