Should the EU be considered a Model for ASEAN?
On the 40th anniversary of EU-ASEAN relations, rather than asking if the EU is a model for ASEAN, should we be focusing on how the EU and ASEAN might work better together?
The debate about whether the European Union (EU) is a model for other regions has been around for some time. David Miliband, when he was British Foreign Secretary, suggested in 2007 that the EU should be a ‘model power’ rather than a ‘superpower’. The EU would show “other actors that European norms can also work for them, … provide economic incentives for adopting these norms” and “shape policies of global competitors by example and persuasion”.
But there are significant problems with classifying the EU as a model, as well as problems with creating an image of the EU as a model power.