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South Korea’s diplomatic and security focus has inevitably been on North-east Asia and its difficult relationship with its northern neighbour, but South Korea also has a role to play in the broader Asian Pacific region. This paper analyses South Korea’s increasing economic, political and cultural links with the region and its role in the development of Asian Pacific regionalism. Utilising the concept of ‘middle power’, it argues that, while clearly South Korea cannot ignore what is happening in its immediate geographical environment, it does have the economic and political resources to enable it to take advantage of the opportunities for greater interactions with other parts of the Asian Pacific region, if the political will exists.


CAPS Working Paper Series No.172 (Aug 06)

Recommended Citation

Bridges, B. (2006).From ASPAC to EAS : South Korea and the Asian Pacific Region (CAPS Working Paper Series No.172). Retrieved from Lingnan University website: