16 July 2016
Ambassador-at-Large Ong Keng Yong misses the good old days when Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand, with support from other Asean members, led the way in opening up the region economically.
The veteran diplomat, who was Asean secretary-general from 2003 to 2008, singles out the South China Sea issue as a hindrance to regional cooperation.
“I don’t see Asean having that kind of business-oriented leadership we had 20 years ago,” he says. “People are distracted by all kinds of political problems and domestic issues these days, and it seems every meeting is being overshadowed by what is happening in the South China Sea. This kind of atmosphere is very corrosive.”
RSIS / Online / Print
Last updated on 18/07/2016