“Assessing the Results of a Special ASEAN-US Summit in Sunnylands”

26/Feb/2016 08:00:00

Venue : CISS Head Office, No.65, Street 606, Boeung Kok II Commune, Toul Kork District, Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Speaker: Dr. Chheang Vannarith, Chairman of the Board



The relationship between ASEAN and the US has developed remarkably since the US introduced its rebalancing strategy towards Asia and acceded to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC) in 2009. The first ASEAN-US Leaders’ Meeting in Singapore in 2009 started a new chapter in strategic trust-building and enhanced multi-sectoral and multi-layered bilateral relationship between ASEAN and US. Six years later, in last year, ASEAN and US elevated their relations to a strategic partnership level. This public lecture reviews the bilateral relationship between ASEAN and US, assesses the outcomes of a Special ASEAN-US Summit in Sunnylands on February 15-16. 

Three assumptions will be made: (1) ASEAN and the US are working towards a comprehensive strategic partnership through the enhancement of strategic and security relationships, economic cooperation and integration, and people-to-people ties; (2) The US underscores the role of ASEAN and ASEAN-led regional institutions and mechanisms in maintaining regional peace and stability; (3) As the US and China are competing to expand their strategic and economic interests in the Asia-Pacific, ASEAN will play an increasingly significant role in providing a platform to promote trust and confidence building, build norms in preventive diplomacy, strengthen rules-based international relations, and develop approaches to conflicts. 

About the Speaker

Vannarith Chheang is a Consultant for Southeast Asia Program at the Nippon Foundation (TNF). He is also Co-founder and Chairman of Cambodian Institute for Strategic Studies, and a Senior Fellow at the Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace where he previously served as the Executive Director from 2009 to 2013. He was a Lecturer of Asia-Pacific Studies at the University of Leeds from 2013 to 2016. Chheang served as a technical adviser to the Cambodian National Assembly, helping to organize the 32nd ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly in 2011, and supported the Ministry of National Defence of Cambodia to host the Sixth ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting in 2012.

He has been awarded numerous fellowships, including T-wai's Global Emerging Voices (2013), the Nippon Foundation Fellowship for Asian Public Intellectuals (2013-2014), France's Ministry of Foreign Affairs Personalités d'avenir (2012), the CSIS Young Leadership (2010) and the East-West Center's Asia Pacific Leadership Program (2008). He has also been a Visiting Research Fellow at the Institute for Developing Economies (IDE-JETRO) in Chiba (2012) and a South-East Asia Fellow at the East-West Center in Washington (2010).