Shangri-La Dialogue Transatlantic Seminar
In partnership with the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), GMF hosted an annual high-level seminar on the afternoon following the official Shangri-La Dialogue program in Singapore. The event brought together leading policymakers and strategic thinkers from Asia, Europe, and the United States for a discussion on transatlantic relations and the Asia-Pacific. This unique roundtable involved a select subset of some of the most influential Shangri-La Dialogue attendees from the West and Asia, who gathered in an informal, conversational format in contrast to the major plenary and breakout sessions of the Dialogue. As the only regular forum at which transatlantic defense officials and thought leaders gather in Asia, the Shangri-La Dialogue provided an ideal platform to deepen the transatlantic dimension of the debate on security issues in Asia. The seminar provided an opportunity to explore common threads in the strategic concerns of the Atlantic and Asia-Pacific policy communities, which still frequently operate on parallel tracks. Some of the cross-cutting issues that have important ramifications for both the transatlantic and Asian strategic environments, such as terrorism and nuclear security, are longstanding, while others, such as navigating China’s rise as a military power, prospects for partnership with India, the future of Afghanistan, cyber security, and the prosecution of maritime disputes, are either intensifying or are new developments.
The annual seminar titled, “Asia, the West, and the Changing International Order,” featured free-flowing discussion on several critical issues: the security aspects of infrastructure projects and connectivity in continental Asia, maritime security, China’s land reclamation projects in the South China Sea, ISIS and the threat of religious extremism, and global leadership in today’s changing international order. The discussions have also explored the common strategic concerns of the U.S., EU, and Asian countries in the Middle East. Participants have included former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt, former CIA Director General David Petraeus, former U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry, Vice Chief of Staff Lieutenant General Koji Yamazaki, National Intelligence Council Chairman Gregory Treverton, World Economic Forum Managing Director Espen Barth Eide, Foundation for Strategic Research (France) Director Camille Grand, and many other high-level representatives from Australia, Bangladesh, Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Myanmar, Norway, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, Thailand, the United Kingdom, the United States, Vietnam, as well as the European Commission, European Parliament, European External Action Service, and NATO.