In an increasingly interconnected world, understanding and addressing geopolitical dynamics is crucial for global stability, economic prosperity, and international cooperation. The session on "Navigating Geopolitical Complexities: Trends and Perspectives" delved into the intricate web of geopolitical forces shaping today's international landscape. ASEAN-centric geopolitical buffer could serve the U.S. and China’s interest, and the region’s relevance by repositioning itself between the great powers as a bridge will play an important role. Meanwhile, recent trends highlight the increasing scrutiny and cautious approach towards Chinese FDI, and given the strategic applications of AI, this technology is now a key factor in the ongoing competition between the United States and China. A consequence of the trend toward greater digital sovereignty—which then drives the trend further—is increasing fear of being cut off from critical digital components such as computer chips and a lack of control over the international flow of citizens’ data. More recently, AI is viewed by some political leaders as a technology that potentially carries greater geopolitical significance than previous technological shifts. Against this backdrop, the session covered:
1. How economic interdependence influences geopolitical relationships, trade patterns, and the potential for both cooperation?
2. How will countries in ASEAN align in the geopolitical dynamics by analyzing the changing dynamics of power among nation-states and regions, considering the rise of new global players and shifts in traditional power centers?
3. How do we balance access to innovation versus safety?