Quo Vadis ASEAN Security Amidst the United States-China Rivalry in the Southeast Asia Region

Nurul Titi Marie(1), Prawita Meidy Handayani(2), Samti Wira Wibawati(3*),

(1) The House of Representatives of the Republic of Indonesia and Paramadina University
(2) The House of Representatives of the Republic of Indonesia and Indonesia Defense University Alumnae
(3) The House of Representatives of the Republic of Indonesia, Padjajaran University and Defense Diplomacy Strategic Forum
(*) Corresponding Author


Tensions between the United States and China intensify globally, particularly in Southeast Asia. Therefore, ASEAN countries should re-assess the ties between these two great powers, both within the ASEAN region and with external counterparts. Given the strategic value of the region, Southeast Asia has become the venue for strategic competition between the United States and China over the past decade. Therefore, rowing the ASEAN's boat among the two gigantic reefs in the ocean requires ASEAN resilience as a Community to overcome the current and future challenges. Potential conflicts intra-ASEAN could be entry points for major powers to weaken ASEAN's unity. The study aims to analyze the most suitable approach for ASEAN regionally to deal with the challenges and to meet the expectations for a sustainable ASEAN Community and assess whether ASEAN's orientation in maintaining neutrality against major powers remains suitable to serve the strategic interests of the member states in the current environment. In this regard, a qualitative method and concepts of Amalgamated Security Community and Pluralistic Security Community are applied to analyze the study. The results of the study show realistic calculation can never be overlooked to preserve sustainable common strategic interests for the member states, which include economic growth on the one hand, and stable regional peace on the other hand. In this regard, “a manageable United States-China rivalry” by a solid ASEAN Pluralistic Security Community in the region guarantees more sustainability of national strategic interests for its member states and ASEAN.

Full Text:



Acharya, A. (2014). Constructing a Security Community in Southeast Asia ASEAN and the Problem of Regional Order. New York: Routledge.

Acharya, A., & Goh, E. (2007). Reassessing Security Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific: Competition, Congruence, and Transformation. Boston: The MIT Press.

ASEAN. (2022). The Founding of ASEAN. Retrieved from https://asean.org/the-founding-of-asean/

Associatioon of Southeast Asian Nations. (2008). The ASEAN Charter. Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat.

Caballero-Anthony, M. (2005). Regional Security in Southeast Asia: Beyond the ASEAN Way. Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies.

Creswell, J. W. (2014). Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches. London: Sage Publisher.

Daly, R. (2015, September 22). How Washington Can Manage Sustainable Strategic Competition with China. Retrieved March 11, 2023, from https://thediplomat.com/2015/09/how-washington-can-manage-sustainable-strategic-competition-with-china/

Deutsch, K. W. (2016). Political Community and the North American Area: International Organization in the Light of Historical Experience. New Jersey: Princeton University Press.

Jetschke, A. (2011). Is ASEAN a Provider of Regional Security Governance? Jerman: Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Freiburg.

Katsumata, H. (2009). ASEAN’s Cooperative Security Enterprise: Norms and Interests in The ASEAN Regional Forum. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Kuznar, A., & Menkes, J. (2017). Changes in Perception of European ntegration After Brexit (No. 57). Poland.

Lehmann, V., & Steinhilber, J. (2006). The Struggle for Peace Rethinking Intervention and Conflict Management The Role of Regional Organizations. Berlin: Friedrich Ebert Stiftung.

Severino, R. C. (2006). Southeast Asia in Search of an ASEAN Community. Singapore: Intitute of Southeast Asian Studies.

Smith, A. L. (2004). ASEAN’s Ninth Summit: Solidifying Regional Cohesion, Advancing External Linkages. Contemporary Southeast Asia: A Journal of International and Strategic Affairs, 26(3), 416–433.

The ASEAN Secretariat. (2015). ASEAN 2025: Forging Ahead Together. Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat.

The Habibie Center. (2016). ASEAN Community Quo Vadis? Jakarta: The Habibi Center.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.33172/jp.v9i1.1905


Journal Terindex di Garuda


Lisensi Creative Commons
Jurnal Pertahanan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.