A Dialogue Facilitator        

ASEM covers potentially all issues of common interest to Europe and Asia. ASEM has provided a dialogue platform to address international matters such as United Nations reforms, weapons of mass destruction (WMD) issues, terrorism, migration flows or WTO negotiations.. Asia and Europe have worked together for improving the international security environment. Overall, ASEM has become a useful process for managing globalization and its effects, for enhancing interregional and international business frameworks, and promoting the role of the Euro in Asia. ASEM is also about people and culture. It has served as a dialogue facilitator and helped increasing mutual understanding through people-to-people contacts.        


In that context, ASEM should be considered as a dialogue process as well as a delivery instrument. In fact, since no formal negotiations take place within ASEM, it is difficult to quantify the real contribution of ASEM on a particular issue. The delivery aspect of ASEM is not always visible since concrete developments may occur elsewhere in a more formal setting.        

A Policy-Making Laboratory        

ASEM is a policy-making laboratory. By promoting an open and inclusive dialogue, ASEM has allowed its participants to develop and test new ideas for future policy-making. By creating a permanent process of consultation, ASEM has helped to streamline the international agenda. As a forum promoting an open and informal dialogue, ASEM provides an opportunity to work towards negotiated solutions, especially in areas of disagreement.        

It provides additional consultation opportunities before official negotiations take place at a multilateral conference. Because ASEM remains an informal dialogue-based process, there is no formal or structured agenda. One specific institution, the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), has been created in response to Summit decisions.        

ASEM also creates opportunities for exchanging experiences and share knowledge. It facilitates some transfer of technology to Asian countries who have shown interest in the European regional integration developments. In the meantime, European partners can gain a better understanding of regional developments in Asia and the perspectives of Asia's regional integration. ASEM helps to build common knowledge on specific issues too. This feature might play a growing role in an enlarged ASEM, especially on trans-national and security issues, in particular for the fight against international terrorism.        

Managing Growing Europe-Asia Relations        

ASEM was established as a new process between Asia-Europe, which complements existing Europe-Asia relations. ASEM is not a substitute for other bilateral or multilateral fora between Asia and Europe, and it can best work to facilitate and stimulate progress in other for a. As a new layer of dialogue and cooperation, ASEM has enhanced synergies in Europe-Asia relations. ASEM has also served as catalyst for overall Asia-Europe relations and complements other levels of relations between the two regions.        

ASEM has helped Europe and Asia to have a more global vision of the two regions. By remaining an informal dialogue-based process, ASEM aims to promote overall Asia-Europe relations on international and inter-regional issues of common interest. By bringing together different cultures and civilisations, ASEM is a unique process to foster common understanding and dialogue