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ASEAN-US Summit Viewed as More Symbolic Than Substantive

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10 Feb ASEAN-US Summit Viewed as More Symbolic Than Substantive

SIIA Chairman Simon Tay and SIIA Fellow Lim Chin Leng were quoted by Voice of America on 10 Feb 2016, regarding the upcoming special US-ASEAN summit hosted by US President Barack Obama.

“This being the last year of President Obama in office, I’m not particular strong on the idea that a great deal of substance can be done,” said Simon Tay, chairman of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs.

The Philippines and Vietnam are among those involved in maritime territorial disputes with China, and increasingly looking to Washington for security assurances. That puts them apart from some of the other ASEAN states, which resist amplifying the rhetoric toward Beijing.

That also could make it difficult for any substantive or groundbreaking proclamation emerging from the meeting in California.

“I don’t think the United States is setting out to wreck anything,“ said Hong Kong University international law professor Chin Leng Lim. “But of course the United States has concerns about the South China Sea, about freedom of navigation…and these issues will be put up front at the summit.”

The full article is available on 
Voice of America.

Photo Credit: Executive Office of the President of the United States