3 ASEM as an instrument for diplomacy

Introduction

Chapters 1 and 2 have given an empirical account of the conception, birth and development of ASEM. Several factors have been given to explain the impetus behind ASEM. Scholars operating from a realist paradigm would be inclined to focus on the structural reality of the changing distribution of economic power, and the self-interests of key states in the ASEM equation — in particular, the fear of being shut out from lucrative economic opportunities in each other's regions. These were seen as the primary motivating factors for the Asians and Europeans to start a dialogue process. This dialogue process was seen as fundamentally state-driven, with the nation-states represented by their respective ...

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