The Southwest Pacific is considered one of the most vulnerable regions in the world to natural hazards. Five of the Pacific Island States rank among the top 20 most-at-risk countries in the World Risk Index, with Vanuatu and Tonga ranking first and second respectively. The Southwest Pacific neighbours Southeast Asia, and both regions are exposed to a variety of natural hazards, resulting in significant damage and loss of lives annually. This shared vulnerability raises the potential to create a coalition of affected states from the Asia-Pacific to shape the global debate on the effects of climate-induced disasters and extreme weather events. ASEAN’s One ASEAN One Response (OAOR) vision of responding to disasters as one inside and outside the region could apply to the Southwest Pacific as an important region to explore how this vision can be realised.
This policy report explores disaster governance in the Southwest Pacific as an area of potential cooperation for ASEAN. Particular attention is paid to Fiji and Tonga, both of which, like their counterparts in ASEAN, have standing militaries that are first responders in disasters. Fiji is also home to the headquarters of regional organisations and, therefore, the centre of regional cooperation in the Southwest Pacific.
Country and Region Studies / East Asia and Asia Pacific / Non-Traditional Security / Policy Reports / Regionalism and Multilateralism / Southeast Asia and ASEAN
Last updated on 29/11/2019