SHARE >>>  

Mogherini visit deepens EU-Asia relations

Federica Mogherini spent the first half of August on a major diplomatic effort to deepen EU-Asia relations. After attending the Asean regional forum (ARF) in Singapore, and holding more than a dozen bilateral meetings, she visited Korea, followed by New Zealand and Australia.

Although she has had to spend huge amounts of time trying to save the Iran nuclear deal, Mogherini understands how important Asia is for European prosperity. The Asia-Pacific is the EU's biggest trade partner, with some €1.5 trillion in two-way trade in 2017 and over €800 billion of European FDI going to Asia in 2016. All projects show that these figures are likely to increase in coming years.

If the EU interest is clear, Mogherini’s visit also reflects a growing Asian interest in strengthening ties with the EU which is now viewed as a stable and predictable actor, compared to the uncertainty that characterises the US under Trump. The constant refrain from all Asian leaders in recent months is that they do not wish to see the current rules-based international system destroyed.

/// OP-ED

DPRK Deja Vu

By Fraser Cameron

‘We have seen it all before’ - was the judgement of veteran DPRK watcher, Victor Cha, after the DPRK began stonewalling during Mike Pompeo’s latest trip to Pyongyang. Cha was one of many experts who expressed disbelief at the paucity of the Singapore statement after the Trump-Kim summit. 

Trump was pleased at his photo op that he tweeted ‘there is no more nuclear threat from North Korea.’ At home he basked in a sudden surge in popularity. The great dealmaker had triumphed where his predecessors had failed. ‘Rocket Man’ was suddenly ‘a good guy.’ There was no longer any need for US-South Korea joint military exercises. Trump even agreed that these were ‘provocative’ – language used by the DPRK for years.

Imran Khan

Imran Khan wins Pakistan Elections


Former cricketer Imran Khan, whose PTI party won more seats than other parties in the 25 July elections, is on course to be the next PM of Pakistan. The second party, the PML-N, led by former PM Sharif, had alleged vote-rigging but said the outcome of elections would be accepted ‘for the sake of democracy.’ There now seems, however, some doubt on this commitment leaving the final outcome uncertain.

Brexit and Asia

The Implications of Brexit for Asia

Opening the panel discussion,Fraser Cameron, Director EU-Asia Centre, said that Brexit will have major implications for Asia and for EU-Asia relations. It will be felt most immediately on the trade side but will also have an impact on the resources that the EU brings to the table in dealing with Asia.


EU-ASIA Centre is a think tank dedicated to promoting closer relations between the EU and Asia.

Read more