Explaining subregional cooperation: Events, concepts and the Mekong basin
This chapter examines the events in the global sphere and in Northeast and Southeast Asia that led to subregional cooperation in the Mekong basin. The ﬁrst section examines the major events during and after the Cold War. It analyses the changes in the global power structure, which was reﬂected in changes in the regional power structure and led to the emergence of the socalled ‘new regionalism’ in subregional cooperation in Northeast and Southeast Asia. The second section then sets out to explain these concepts with relevance to subregional cooperation: the theoretical concepts of region, regionalism, regionalization, new regionalism and subregionalism, and the foreign policy implications of the new global and regional settings, including the issue of actors other than the central government who are active in the ﬁeld of foreign relations. The third part explains these concepts in relation to the Mekong basin, and the ﬁnal section provides a short conclusion emphasizing the major theme of this study: the mutual inﬂuences of subregionalism and foreign policy in Mekong basin governance.