The East Asia Summit (EAS) is a meeting of 18 regional leaders for strategic dialogue and cooperation on the key political, security, and economic challenges facing the Indo-Pacific region.
The EAS comprises the ten member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) – Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam – along with Australia, China, Japan, India, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, Russia and the United States.
The EAS membership represents around 54% of the world's population and accounts for 58% of global GDP. The EAS includes 8 of Australia's top 10 trading partners. EAS countries receive around 74% of Australia's total exports.
EAS in Regional Architecture
The EAS is an ASEAN-centred forum; it can only be chaired by an ASEAN member. The following diagram shows how ASEAN fits at the centre of regional organisations and initiatives such as the EAS and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
Text version of diagram
The chair of ASEAN is also the chair of the EAS. The role of the ASEAN chair rotates annually between the ten ASEAN member states. The chair sets priorities for the year and hosts most EAS meetings.
- Current chair: 2018 Singapore
- Past chairs: 2017 Philippines 2016 Laos
- Future chairs: 2019 Thailand, 2020 Vietnam
- 1974: Australia became ASEAN's first dialogue partner
- 1994: Australia joined the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF)
- 2005: Australia acceded to the ASEAN Treaty of Amity and Cooperation
- 2005: Australia participated, as a founding member, in the inaugural EAS in Kuala Lumpur
- 2011: The US and Russia joined the EAS
- 2014: Australia elevated to Strategic Partnership with ASEAN
- 2015: The Kuala Lumpur Declaration on the 10th Anniversary of the EAS was issued
- 2018: ASEAN-Australia Special Summit
Key EAS Meetings in 2018
- May, August and October: EAS Senior Officials' Meetings
- August: EAS Foreign Ministers' Meeting
- September: EAS Economic Ministers' Meeting
- November: EAS Leaders' Summit
Recent EAS Initiatives led by Australia
- 2018 EAS International Disaster Assistance Workshop in Perth (co-hosted by Indonesia)
- 2017 EAS Leaders' Statement on Anti-money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (co-sponsored by Indonesia and Myanmar)
- 2016 EAS Leaders' Statement on Non-Proliferation (co-sponsored by Myanmar)
- 2015 EAS Leaders' Statement on Countering Violent Extremism (co-sponsored by Malaysia and the Republic of Korea)
- 2014 EAS Leaders' Statement on Rapid Disaster Response (co-sponsored by the Philippines)
- 2019 EAS Seminar on Maritime Security and International Law (to be held)
- 2017 EAS Non-Proliferation Seminar in Melbourne, co-hosted by Thailand
- 2016 EAS Maritime Security Cooperation Seminar in Sydney, co-hosted by Indonesia
- 2015 EAS Search and Rescue Lessons Learned Seminar in Sydney, co-hosted by Thailand
Key Australian Officials
EAS Institutional Support
The EAS Ambassadors are based in Jakarta and meet regularly through the EAS Ambassadors' Meeting in Jakarta (EAMJ) to discuss emerging issues, prepare for EAS meetings, and take forward decisions by EAS leaders. The recent creation of a dedicated EAS Unit within the ASEAN Secretariat in Jakarta also supports the monitoring and implementation of decisions by EAS leaders.