Europe in the World

Turning the tide in troubled waters: EU-ASEAN cooperation on climate adaptation
25 Jan 2024 09:00 - 10:15
Source: A motorbike rider guides his vehicle on a flooded road in Jakarta, Indonesia / Reuters

Tensions in the South China Sea and hydro geopolitics in the Mekong reflect how great power competition, notably between China and the US, plays out in Southeast Asia. This makes it increasingly complex for ASEAN to take a forward-leaning approach. For the EU, however, it also presents an opportunity to engage with a strategic part of the Indo-Pacific and showcase it can act as a geopolitical actor with relevant expertise, funding and instruments for climate adaptation efforts. 

Member states from both ASEAN and the EU are feeling the effects of climate change now more than ever before. The increased intensity and frequency of extreme weather events in both blocs call for immediate action and necessitate international cooperation. Managing these challenges requires faster, smarter, and more systemic climate adaptation. This is a topic where ASEAN and the EU can cooperate and learn from each other. This online debate will address the following questions and bring different perspectives to the table: 

  • How can climate imperatives sync better with geopolitical complexities in the region? 
  • What can ASEAN and the EU gain from working together, next to China and the US? 
  • Where is the untapped potential for EU and ASEAN cooperation on climate adaptation? 
  • Which EU instruments and mechanisms for managing water resources and disaster risk can foster cooperation with ASEAN? 

During the event, you will have the chance to ask your questions in the Q&A session. 

Preliminary programme

This event takes place from 09:00-10:15 CET (15:00-16:15 ICT).

  • Welcome remarks by H.E. Sujiro Seam, EU Ambassador to ASEAN
  • Expert panel moderated by Louise van Schaik, Head of EU & Global Affairs Unit at the Clingendael Institute 
    • Watt Botkosal, Mekong River Commission
    • M. Habib Abiyan Dazkwan, Centre for Strategic and International Studies Indonesia           
    • Laurent Umans, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands 
  • Q&A session moderated by Sarah Lokenberg, Junior Research Fellow at the Clingendael Institute
  • Closing remarks by Charadine Pich, Deputy Director of CICP 

Register here to join Zoom and ask questions. Or watch below via YouTube.


This online public event is co-organised with the Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace (CICP).