The proliferation of multilateral security processes and institutions in the Asia Pacific in the wake of the Cold War is a testament to the region's constructive and collegial spirit toward addressing security challenges. The formation of the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) in 1994 paved the way for the region to approach security in a cooperative and inclusive manner. Although the ARF offered a novel departure from competitive security structures, and was followed by processes such as the East Asia Summit (EAS) and the ASEAN Defence Ministerial Meeting Plus (ADMM Plus), the US-led 'hub and spokes' system continues to be viewed by some states in the region as a stabilizing force.
In light of the scale and complexity of security challenges confronting the region, CSCAP considered it timely to review the regional security architecture and offer recommendations to strengthen and improve on the existing regional security arrangements and processes.
This memorandum was produced by the CSCAP Study Group on Regional Security Architecture and was approved by the 41st CSCAP Steering Committee Meeting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on 5 June 2014.