Category Archives: Issue: Alternative Regionalism

In the News: US revives Asia trade agenda

PENANG – A speech by United States President Barack Obama in Tokyo has elevated the status and prospect of the little-known Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement, known by many observers as the P4, to the center stage of regional economic cooperation. Obama said during his December speech that the US was “engaging with the Trans-Pacific partnership countries with the goal of shaping a regional agreement”.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), as the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) would have it called, is a free-trade agreement (FTA) between Brunei, Chile, New Zealand and Singapore that was concluded in 2005 and which came into force in May 2006. Together with Australia, Peru and Vietnam, the US aims to expand the TPP from four to eight members (P8).

Read the full story at Asia Times

Issue Paper: Understanding the ASEAN Charter and the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint – now available online!

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AFA and AsiaDHRRA Issue Paper. Vol. 3, No. 1. Quezon City, Philippines, February 2008.

The ASEAN Charter and the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint are two important documents that the 40-year old ASEAN recently signed in order to advance it vision of a “sharing and caring community”. Because majority of the people of Southeast Asia are small-scale farmers who depend on agriculture for their existence, it is important to ask how the charter, the blueprint, as well as the various free trade agreements will impact on them.

This issue paper presents basic information on the ASEAN Charter and the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Blueprint, including updates on ASEAN Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), as well as AFA’s analysis and position on these topics. It was written by Focus on the Global South Program Coordinator Joy Chavez, who has been one of AFA’s resource persons in its regional consultations on ASEAN-related matters.

To download a PDF copy of this issue paper, click here

To order hard copies of this issue paper, get in touch with the AFA Secretariat.

Towards a Fair Trade in an Integrating ASEAN: Perspectives of Small Men and Women Farmers in AFA

Paper developed by the Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA) and presented by Mr. Muhammad Nuruddin, Executive Committee Member of AFA, and Secretary General of Aliansi Petani Indonesia (API) during the Panel Session of the 6th ASEAN People’s Assembly (APA) entitled “Towards Fair Trade In An Integrating ASEAN: Perspectives of Workers, Farmers and Informal Sector” held in EDSA Shangri-La Hotel, Mandaluyong City, Philippines in October 25, 2007.

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AFA co-sponsors APA panel session on “Fair Trade in ASEAN Integration”

AFA co-organized a panel session entitled “Towards Fair Trade in an Integrating ASEAN: Perspectives of Workers, Farmers and Informal Sector” held at the EDSA Shangri-La Hotel, Mandaluyong City, Philippines last October 25, 2007. The pane l session was one of the concurrent panel sessions conducted during the 6th ASEAN Peoples’ Assembly (APA) with the theme “ASEAN at 40: Realizing the Peoples’ Expectations”.
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AFA hosts roundtable discussion on alternative regionalism

rtd on alt regThe “Roundtable Discussion on Alternative Regionalism” was held last July 24, 2007 at the Ledesma Room of the Partnership Center, Loyola Heights, Quezon City, hosted by PAKISAMA.

The roundtable discussion was organized by TAG, AsiaDHRRA, and AFA, and funded by Oxfam International and Agriterra. It brought together key advocates working on the ASEAN integration processes to brainstorm on the kind of regionalism – in the economic, political and social sphere – that ASEAN can undertake which promotes development for the poorer sectors of ASEAN society – the small-scale men and women producers, fishers, indigenous peoples and workers based on a good understanding of lessons learned from regional integration processes and experiences on regionalism in other parts of the world. It was one of the key activities for the research on alternative regionalism that is being conducted.

AFA co-anchors research on alternative regionalism and trade

Two research projects – on alternative regionalism and alternative trade – are being being jointly undertaken with AsiaDHRRA and Trade Advocates Group (TAG), a Philippine-based coalition. The two researches are set to be completed by September 2007. Second drafts of the researh are being circulated for comments by members of anchor organizatizations. The drafts have incorporated the results of round table discusions held last July for the regionalism paper and August for the trade paper. Neth Dano is writing the regionalism paper while Ping Peria, the trade paper.