In Southeast Asia and beyond, the security of countries is interconnected, interdependent and indivisible
The world is obviously at a critical juncture as multiple complex crises are posing unprecedented threats to the very foundations of peace, stability and the progress of humanity in different parts of the world.
The international security environment is becoming increasingly complex, uncertain and fragile as geopolitical rivalries have led to armed conflicts and tensions in some places, compounded by the looming global economic recession and the climate crisis.
The formation of geopolitical fault lines and bloc politics, the strategic trust deficit, and sharply increased geoeconomic fragmentation have put strain on the multilateral system and global governance. In other words, multilateralism is in decline and protectionism and populism on the rise.
The World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report 2023 voices concern over the rising geopolitical fragmentation that heightens the risk of multi-domain conflict. Global security issues are becoming more multidimensional with cross-border implications.
Like the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, no one is safe unless everyone is safe. We need to acknowledge that our security and well-being are intrinsically intertwined. The escalating hostilities in Ukraine, heightening geopolitical rivalries, soaring food and energy prices, and the climate crisis are among top global security issues that require unprecedented international cooperation and partnership.
In the Asia-Pacific region, the US-China competition is structurally complex in tandem with the global power shift from the West to the East. The United States, since 2016 when Donald Trump came to power, has taken an assertive approach to check the rising power of China in order to maintain the US’ supremacy.
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