Berlin Conference on Asian Security 2010

Military Trends in Asia: Capabilities, Strategies, Regional and Global Implications

A conference jointly organised by Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP), Berlin,
Federal Ministry of Defence, Berlin,
and Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Jakarta

Berlin, SWP, September 29 - October 2, 2010

Venue: Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, Ludwigkirchplatz 3-4, D-10719 Berlin (Wilmersdorf)
Contact: Gudrun Wacker (++49-30-88007-265)

In all organizational matters: Petra Rettig, Conference Secretariat (phone: ++49-30-88007-121) petra.rettig(at)

The Fifth Berlin Conference on Asian Security (BCAS) will serve as a forum for exchange between academics and practitioners from Europe, North America and Asia. Its aim is to generate new ideas and discuss policy implications of evolving dynamics. The Asia Pacific is not only characterized by its dynamic economic developments but also by numerous overlapping traditional and non-traditional security challenges. Due to the economic rise of China and India, power shifts can be observed. Despite the absence of larger military conflicts in the region, Asian countries have invested significantly in the build-up of their military forces. Opacity in military doctrines and actual capacities is prevalent. This year's BCAS will address current military trends in Asia. Modernization efforts will be outlined and underlying threat perceptions identified. In this context the important role of the United States and its bilateral alliances will be addressed. At the same time, regional actors are not isolated from international developments and have to cope with new global initiatives, like US President Barack Obama's visionary goal of »Global Zero«. They also have to define their position vis-à-vis existing frameworks, such as NATO, or within regional security arrangements.

Wednesday, 29 September 2010
Arrival of participants

Thursday, 30 September 2010


Opening Remarks
Volker Perthes, Director, SWP


Session I: Regional Arms Race and Implications for Conflict Constellations
The first session will frame the debate, regional developments will be analyzed. What factors are driving contemporary defence programmes in Asia? How do China's and India's rise in military power affect developments in neighbouring countries? What are the threat perceptions underlying military planning?
Chair: Volker Perthes (SWP, Berlin)
Zhu Feng (Beijing University), Regional Arms Race and Implications for Conflict Constellations
Akutsu Hiroyasu (National Institute for Defense Studies, Tokyo), The Arms Race and Factors behind Security Strategy/Policy and Defense Planning in Asia: A Japanese Perspective
Dipankar Banerjee (Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies, New Delhi), Arms Race in Asia And its Implications for Conflict Constellations - A View from Delhi
Christian Le Mière (International Institute for Strategic Studies, London), Regional arms race and implications for conflict constellations


plenary debate


coffee break, SWP lobby


Session II: Maritime Ambitions and Maritime Security
The importance of the Asian navies and their ambitions in global maritime security will be presented. What are the implications of blue-water ambitions of various countries? How does the protection of economic and strategic interests along important sea routes (Strait of Malacca, Horn of Africa) drive maritime developments? What role can sophisticated technologies (e.g. aircraft carrier plans, submarine proliferation) play in shifting power balances in the region?
Chair: Christian Wagner (SWP, Berlin)
Su Hao (China Foreign Affairs University, Beijing), An Inquiry into the East Asian Maritime Security Order: Can Disorder be Turned into Order?
Rahul Roy-Chaudhury (International Institute for Strategic Studies, London), Maritime Ambitions and Maritime Security: India
Mohd Nizam Basiron (Maritime Institute of Malaysia), Southeast Asian navies: national interests, regional competition and cooperation and international obligations
Valérie Niquet (Fondation pour la Recherche Stratégique, Paris), Asian navies’ modernization: the factors and consequences of modernization


plenary debate


buffet lunch, SWP lobby


Session III: The US Military Presence and the Future of Security Partnerships
US military presence still plays an important role in the Asia Pacific. How is the role of the United States perceived by regional actors? How are traditional alliances of the US and regional stability affected by current developments in Sino-US relations? Can indications for a US »return to Asia« be observed under the new US administration?
Chair: Gudrun Wacker (SWP, Berlin)
Douglas Paal (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Washington), The U.S. Military Presence and the Future of Military Partnerships
Tan Seng Chye (S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Singapore), The US Military Presence and Future Security Partnerships in the Asia Pacific —Challenges and Prospects
Martin Wagener (University of Trier)
Heino Klinck (Italian MoD Center for High Defense Studies) [comment]


plenary debate


coffee break, SWP lobby


Session IV: The Future of NATO: Cooperation and its Limits
The fourth session will analyze the regional situation within an international context. The relationship to NATO as one of the most important security political actors is of high relevance for various Asian nations. How could NATO's new security concept affect Asia? What do Asian partners expect from NATO's outreach efforts? What is the potential of NATO cooperation with China and India?
Chair: Markus Kaim (SWP, Berlin)
Tsuruoka Michito (National Institute for Defense Studies, Tokyo), NATO and Japan: A View from Tokyo
Cui Hongjian (China Institute of International Studies, Beijing), NATO’s New Concept and its Existence in Asia: Relevance for China
Robert Ayson (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand), The Future of NATO: Cooperation and its Limits – an Australasian Perspective
Andrew Small (German Marshall Fund of the United States, Brussels), NATO and the Asian powers: Cooperation and its Limits


plenary debate


buffet dinner, SWP lobby

Friday, 1 October 2010


Session V: Global Zero: Asian Responses
This session will identify regional responses to Obama's initiative of »Global Zero«. What are recent nuclear developments in the region? Does the build-up of capacities challenge the existing provisions of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty? What are the perspectives for a nuclear-free Asia-Pacific? What role does North Korea play and how can non-proliferation efforts be supported? How could comprehensive counter-terrorism strategies limit the threat posed by non-state actors?
Chair: Sophie Brune (SWP, Berlin)
Ben Rhode (International Institute for Strategic Studies, London), Global Zero: The Significance of North Korea
Akiyama Nobumasa (Hitotsubashi University, Tokyo), Toward Regional Stability with a Reduced Role of Nuclear Weapons and Mutilateralization of Nuclear Disarmament: An Agenda for a “World Free of Nuclear Weapons” in the East Asian Context
Shen Dingli (Fudan University, Shanghai), Global Zero: A Chinese View
Varun Sahni (University of Jammu, India), Barack Obama’s ‘Global Zero’ and the Rajiv Gandhi Action Plan of 1988: Pragmatic Idealism and the New Realist Commonsense


plenary debate


coffee break, SWP lobby


Session VI: Regional Formats of Military and Security Cooperation
To close the circle we will return the debate to the regional realm. The emergence of a number of new regional initiatives in the security realm can be observed. How far are military-to-military contacts established between Asian nations? What are the implications of a growing confidence in regional solutions and security arrangements (e.g. SCO)? What role can joint exercises and confidence building measures play for regional stability (e.g. cross-Strait relations)?
Chair: Howard Loewen (SWP, Berlin)
Riefqi Muna (Centre for Strategic and International Studies, Jakarta), Regional Format of Military and Security Cooperation: ASEAN's Contribution to the Process
Francis Yi-hua Kan (Chengchi University, Taipei), Prospects of Confidence-Building Measures across the Taiwan Strait and Implications for Regional Security
Jaeho Hwang (Hankuk University, Soul), Sino-South Korean Military Relations: Moving towards Strategic Cooperative Partnership


buffet lunch, SWP lobby


plenary debate


coffee break, SWP lobby


Concluding session - Roundtable discussion
The concluding session will sum up the results of the conference and draw conclusions from the previous debates. In this session policy recommendations for Asia, North America and Europe will be formulated.
Chair: Gudrun Wacker
Tomasz Kozlowski (European Commission, Brussels)
Bonnie Glaser (Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington)
Riefqi Muna
Su Hao
Tsuruoka Michito
Dipankar Banerjee


plenary debate


Closing remarks and end of conference


Transfer to hotel including sightseeing tour


Closing dinner at Ritz-Carlton

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