Edited by Lucyna Czechowska, Andriy Tyushka, Agata Domachowska, Karolina Gawron-Tabor and Joanna Piechowiak-Lamparska
Chapter 13: The ASEAN–Australia strategic partnership: Australia as an awkward partner
In 1974, Australia came to be the first of ASEAN’s ten Dialogue Partners. Four decades later, at the 40th Anniversary Commemorative Summit in Burma held in November 2014, Australia and ASEAN upgraded their relationship to the strategic partnership level. The cooperation that underpins this bilateralism is multidimensional – extending to over more than twenty different interaction areas, including good governance and human rights, transport, finance, energy, tourism, forestry, emergency management, culture, science, public health, environment, and connectivity. The rationale of Australia’s partnership with ASEAN is as follows: first, Australia prioritizes multilateral cooperation in a whole range of other important regional frameworks, including the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), the East Asia Summit (EAS), and the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM-Plus); second, Australia appreciates more its bilateral relations with ASEAN member states. On ASEAN’s side, it is mainly the financial support it receives from Australia that defines the international organization’s strategic interactionism with Australia.
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