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Timor-Leste and ASEAN “Timor-Leste : From candidate to next member state?”
28 February from 13:30 - 15:30
Timor-Leste and ASEAN
Timor-Leste : From candidate to next member state?
28 February 2023, 1.30-3.30 pm.
Room 221, Faculty of Law, Thammasat University, Bangkok
jointly organized by
and the German-Southeast Asian Center of Excellence for Public Policy and Good Governance (CPG), Faculty of Law, Thammasat University
in collaboration with the Asian Governance Foundation (AGF)
At the 40th and 41st ASEAN Summits in Phnom Penh in November 2022, the ASEAN leaders agreed in principle to admit Timor-Leste to be the 11th member of ASEAN. Although no date was given yet for the membership, the 2022 decision constituted by far the most significant move since 2011, when Timor-Leste landed its application to the regional organisation.
Since no other application was so carefully scrutinized by ASEAN Secretariat, academics as well as journalists have questioned, throughout the last 11 years, the motivation of Timor-Leste to join the grouping, the “readiness” of the latter, and the potential factors explaining the length of the process and the reluctance of ASEAN countries to let getting in the new member. However, unexpectedly, Cambodia has played a major role in 2022 when the country assumed the ASEAN presidency, while Timor-Leste is now relying on Indonesia, the ASEAN Chair in 2023, to see its application moving forward.
How to interpret this change in ASEAN organisation perception vis-à-vis Fimor-Leste application? What influence or change, if any, Timor-Leste membership would impulse to the regional grouping and to the current status of regional integration? And more generally in the regional geopolitics marked by the USA-China rivalry and tensions in the South China Sea?