The Asia-Pacific region is undergoing a strategic shift in a period of global uncertainty. China is emerging as a confident and powerful actor, while the United States is perceived as having diminished influence. The region’s geography — a predominantly maritime continent composed of several semi-enclosed seas — means that the Asia-Pacific is afflicted with undefined maritime boundaries at a time of growing state interest in rent earned from the sea. Notwithstanding its status as the world’s most economically vibrant region, the Asia-Pacific confronts a number of strategic challenges that are the source of considerable uncertainty.

Canada and Australia — resource-based economies with a record of bilateral and institutional engagement in the region, and important US allies — have an interest in these challenges, and in ensuring regional strategic stability that promotes economic growth.

  • James Manicom

    James Manicom is a CIGI research fellow, contributing to the development of the global security & politics program. Previously, he held fellowships at the Ocean Policy Research Foundation in Tokyo and the Balsillie School of International Affairs. James’ current research explores Arctic governance, East Asian security, and China's role in ocean governance.

The three papers in this series, co-published with the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), are part of a two-year project between CIGI and ASPI exploring the possibilities for Canadian and Australian cooperation in promoting strengthened security and regional governance in the Asia-Pacific. The project will culminate in a special report that will contribute to discussions at the February 2014 Australia-Canada Economic Leadership Forum in Melbourne. The report will be presented later in 2014 to both Australian and Canadian governments.