Pakistan Institute of Development Economics



Economic Theory and Regional Economic Integration of Asia

The problems and prospects of regional economic cooperation or integration in Asia are today a hotly debated subject, discussed at very different levels in different quarters. In an ECAFE paper entitled “The . Scope for Regional Economic Cooperation in Asia and the Far East”,1 the view was advanced that cooperation implying coordination of economic policy as a whole is already on Asia’s agenda of practical politics. After the economic rationale of cooperation in varied forms had been considered in a general way, an appeal was directed to policy-makers in the Asian region to establish a suitable framework for cooperation within which concrete blueprints of cooperative schemes could be worked out. It is significant that, at the Conference of Asian Economic Planners which discussed that paper among others, there was no disagreement in principle about the need for increased economic cooperation among the countries in Asia and the Far East. There was disagreement only as to what extent of cooperation in relation to the time perspective and what practical forms of it were most desirable—matters concerning which the Conference was by its nature prevented from making a decision and into which further exploration could be made through intergovernmental consultation.

Hiroshi Kitamura

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