Toward an East Asian Economic Community: Opportunities and Challenges

  • Choong Yong Ahn
Part of the Asia Today book series (ASIAT)


The Asian economy is in the middle of an historic transition. The center of gravity of the world economy is shifting to “rising Asia” from the “falling West” heralding the advent of the “Asian Century” or “Renaissance of Asia.” Given East Asia’s ongoing economic regionalism in an unfolding “Asian Century,” how can East Asian economies address opportunities and challenges to realize an East Asian economic community? How will competition among the great powers, especially between the United States and China, affect the integration process of the East Asian economic community? What should middle power economies and smaller ones do to reflect an East Asian identity for a likely future economic community? Choong Yong Ahn describes the concept of economic community, presents basic characteristics of the two great free trade deals, namely the Trans-Pacific Partnership and Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, and discusses the impact of the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank on East Asian integration in relation to the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank. Finally, Ahn presents alternative scenarios or paths toward an East Asian economic community and concludes with a summary of policy implications. While building an East Asian Economic Community, says Ahn, East Asia needs to collectively turn the emerging tide against globalization and open trade by reshaping institutions of regional and global governance.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Choong Yong Ahn
    • 1
  1. 1.Chung-Ang UniversitySeoulSouth Korea

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