East Asia Summit (EAS)
East Asia Summit (EAS)
The East Asia Summit (EAS) is the Indo-Pacific's premier forum for strategic dialogue. It is the only leader-led forum at which all key partners meet to discuss political, security and economic challenges facing the Indo-Pacific, and has an important role to play in advancing closer regional cooperation. Australia participated, as a founding member, in the inaugural EAS held in Kuala Lumpur on 14 December 2005.
The EAS has 18 members - the ten ASEAN countries (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam) along with Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, Russia and the United States. ASEAN leads the forum, and the chair position rotates between ASEAN Member States annually. EAS members represent 54 per cent of the world's population and account for 58 per cent of global GDP worth an estimated US$49.6 trillion. In 2019, Australia's two-way trade with EAS countries was worth A$645.6 billion, 70 per cent of Australia's total two-way trade.
EAS Meetings and Processes
The EAS calendar culminates in the annual Leaders' Summit, which is usually held alongside ASEAN Leaders' meetings in the fourth quarter of every year. In addition to their discussions, leaders issue statements on topical issues, to signal political will for framing policy responses and to provide a basis for cooperation.
In addition to the Leaders' Summit, meetings of EAS Foreign Ministers and Economic Ministers are held annually. These also serve as platforms for frank discussion of political, regional security and economic issues and prepare for the Leaders' Summit, including by developing new ideas on statements for leaders' consideration. Meetings of the EAS Environment, Energy, and Education Ministers are also held frequently.
Additional support for the EAS is provided through the EAS Ambassadors' Meeting in Jakarta (EAMJ). EAS Ambassadors in Jakarta meet regularly to discuss emerging issues, prepare for EAS meetings, and take forward decisions by EAS leaders.
A dedicated EAS Unit within the ASEAN Secretariat in Jakarta also supports the monitoring and implementation of decisions by EAS leaders.
Recent activities in the EAS
The 14th EAS was held on 4 November 2019 in Thailand. EAS leaders discussed key regional issues including maritime security and the South China Sea, the Korean Peninsula, the situation in Rakhine State, counter-terrorism, regional economic integration, maritime cooperation, and connectivity.
EAS leaders adopted three statements in 2019 on: Partnership for Sustainability (co-sponsored by Thailand, China and New Zealand); Cooperation to Combat Transnational Crime (co-sponsored by Australia, Thailand, Myanmar, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand); and Combating the Spread of Illicit Drugs (co-sponsored by the US, China and Vietnam). EAS leaders also welcomed ASEAN's adoption in June 2019 of the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific, which signals ASEAN's commitment to key principles of openness, transparency, inclusivity, respect for international law and sovereignty.
The 10th EAS Foreign Ministers' Meeting was held on 9 September 2020 via videoconference (due to the COVID-19 pandemic). Vietnam, as the 2020 ASEAN and EAS Chair, convened the meeting. Foreign Ministers discussed strategic challenges facing the region, including COVID-19 response and recovery, maritime security and the South China Sea, the Korean Peninsula, Rakhine State, and counter-terrorism.
The 8th EAS Economic Ministers' Meeting was held on 28 August 2020 via videoconference. Ministers discussed the global economic outlook, regional economic recovery, and the regional economic integration agenda. They also exchanged views on the importance of digital economy and resilient supply chains.
Health and economic experts from EAS countries also met on 14 October via videoconference to exchange views on COVID-19 response and recovery.
East Asia Summit documents 2020 (to October)
- Chair's Statement on 10th East Asia Summit Foreign Ministers' Meeting, 9 September 2020
- Joint media statement of the 8th East Asia Summit Economic Ministers' Meeting, 28 August 2020
East Asia Summit documents 2019
- Chair's Statement on 14th East Asia Summit, 4 November 2019
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Cooperation to Combat Transnational Crime
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Partnership for Sustainability
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Combating the Spread of Illicit Drugs
- Joint media statement of the 7th EAS Economic Ministers' Meeting, Thailand, 10 September 2019
- Chair's Statement of the 9th EAS Foreign Ministers' Meeting, Thailand, 2 August 2019
East Asia Summit documents 2018
- Chair's Statement on the 13th East Asia Summit, 15 November 2018
- EAS Leaders' Statement on ASEAN Smart Cities
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Combatting Marine Plastic Debris
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Counter the Threat of Foreign Terrorist Fighters and Returnees
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Deepening Cooperation in the Security of ICT and the Digital Economy
- EAS Leaders' Statement on the Safe and Secure Use, Storage, and Transport of Nuclear and Other Radioactive Materials
- Joint media statement of the 6th EAS Economic Ministers' Meeting, Singapore, 1 September 2018
- Chair's Statement of the 8th EAS Foreign Ministers' Meeting, 4 August 2018, Singapore
East Asia Summit documents 2017
- Chair's Statement of the 12th East Asia Summit, 14 November 2017
- EAS Leaders' Declaration on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism, 14 November 2017
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Cooperation in Poverty Alleviation, 14 November 2017
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Countering Ideological Challenges of Terrorism and Terrorist Narratives and Propaganda, 14 November 2017
- EAS Leaders' Statement on Chemical Weapons, 14 November 2017
- Manila Plan of Action to Implement the Phnom Penh Declaration on the EAS Development Initiative and EAS areas of Cooperation (MPOA)