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Enhancing Regional Economic Cooperation and Integration in Asia and the Pacific

image of Enhancing Regional Economic Cooperation and Integration in Asia and the Pacific

It is argued that to further the development and the deepening of regional economic cooperation and integration (RECI) in the Asia-Pacific region can offer solutions to emerging challenges, such as quelling protectionist tendencies, mitigating rising inequalities, and addressing environmental degradation. Through enhancing regional connectivity for energy, transport and information and communications technology (ICT), and promoting regional cooperation in trade, financing and shared vulnerabilities, RECI offers enormous potential in generating trade, growth and employment, improving social outcomes and managing environmental risks and shared vulnerabilities. This presents the possibility to develop RECI as a critical enabler of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific.

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Addressing shared vulnerabilities and risks in Asia and the Pacific

Despite the diversity among Asia-Pacific countries in terms of population, socioeconomic development and geography, many share vulnerabilities and risks. Among them are transboundary natural disasters, scarcity of natural resources, food security and climate change. Shared vulnerabilities and risks to socioeconomic development and environmental sustainability have been heightened with the increased interdependences among countries that regional integration brings. In this context, it is essential to recognize the value of regional cooperation mechanisms, and to realize their implementation, which includes sharing of best practices, experiences and expertise.

English

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