Europe in the World

EU-ASEAN digital connectivity: why, how and what?
22 Feb 2022 09:00 - 10:15
Bron: Shutterstock

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

Faced with an increasingly volatile international environment, the EU and ASEAN are stepping up their cooperation in the digital domain. In January 2022 the EU and Singapore launched talks towards a digital partnership agreement, which could be a building block for broader EU-ASEAN cooperation.

Earlier, the European Union's Indo-Pacific strategy of September 2021 proposed an EU-ASEAN approach covering digital connectivity. This region’s rapid economic and demographic growth and growing political weight made it a focal point of strategic initiatives of the great powers that seek to bind countries and their (digital) economies to them.

Both the EU and ASEAN stand to benefit from open, safe and inclusive digital connectivity and deeper engagement between the regions’ thriving digital economies. Much is at stake: the digital transition comes with opportunities and disruptions that require forward-looking responses.

  • How can the EU and ASEAN reap the benefits of the digital economy for inclusive development, and ensure economic competitiveness in the digital age?
  • What can ASEAN gain from working together with the EU, next to China and the US? And what can Europeans learn from specific Asian countries that are advanced in for example FinTech and GovTech?
  • What can be done to avoid the misuse of digital innovations by authoritarian regimes and restrictions on individual freedom and openness?

Read our latest policy brief Growing stronger together: Towards an EU–ASEAN  digital partnership?.


The event will be opened by the Ambassador of the European Union to ASEAN, Igor Driesmans

Maaike Okano-Heijmans, Senior Research Fellow at the Clingendael Institute, will discuss the above questions and more with an excellent panel of speakers:

  • Henry Chan, Senior Research Fellow, Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace (CICP)
  • Jessica Wau, Deputy Director of the ASEAN programme, Singapore Institute of International Affairs (SIIA)
  • Paul Foley, Founder of Tech4i2 and former Professor of Evaluation and Strategy Development at Leicester Business School

Closing remarks by Ambassador Pou Sothirak, Director of CICP