It is not enough for the EU to be a bystander or to ‘outsource’ its security policy towards the Indo-Pacific to the US and regional partners. The EU should approach Indo-Pacific security challenges proactively, seeking to influence developments in the regionDr Nicola Leveringhaus and Professor Ramon Pacheco Pardo
28 January 2022
Academics present report on key Indo-Pacific region to European Union
A report examining the future of the European Union’s role in the key Indo-Pacific region was presented to a committee of MEPs by King’s College London academics.
Dr Nicola Leveringhaus and Professor Ramon Pacheco Pardo co-authored an in-depth analysis at the request of the EU’s Sub-Committee on Security and Defence and presented its findings to European Parliament members at a meeting on 27 January.
The report, Security and Defence in the Indo-Pacific: What Is at Stake for the EU and its Strategy?, assessed the short and longer-term strategic options for the EU in terms of security and defence in the region and presented a series of recommendations for policy-makers to consider.
In their report, Prof Pacheco Pardo, head of the Department of European and International Studies, and Dr Leveringhaus, senior lecturer in the Department of War Studies, warned that the security challenges of the Indo-Pacific had a “direct impact” on the EU.
They said: “The region might not be in the immediate European neighbourhood, but its growing importance to the world economy, simmering tensions, increasing links with Europe, the rise of China, and Sino-American competition are among the reasons why the EU must ensure it is a security player in the region.
“It is not enough for the EU to be a bystander or to ‘outsource’ its security policy towards the Indo-Pacific to the US and regional partners. The EU should approach Indo-Pacific security challenges proactively, seeking to influence developments in the region.”
The report’s key recommendations focussed on maritime capacity, cyber security, partnership building with nations and institutions such as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and the approach to China.
The meeting was attended by MEPs from the Foreign Affairs committee, the Security and Defence Sub-committee, and the parliament's delegations for relations with Australia and New Zealand, China, India, Japan, the Korean Peninsula, and Southeast Asia and ASEAN.