Speechs in the year
Tarikh/Date 	: 	05/08/94 

    There  are times in the affairs of mankind when history
takes a definite turn.  This could be such a time.  For much
of  world's  history,  Asia  was   the   centre   of   human
civilisation.      Asia   contributed  considerably  to  the
development of the human society and its civilisation.  Asia
led in the arts and the sciences and the sum total of  human
2.      Asia  had  its share of wars and violence but by and
large it was more peaceful than Europe ever was.    Although
history  books  seem  to suggest that Asian empires appeared
and disappeared with startling rapidity, in fact  they  were
durable,  each  lasting hundreds of years.  And the Imperial
courts patronised the arts and the sciences, causing them to
bloom.  There may be people who think that just because  the
Cold  War is over there is no more history, that history has
come to  an  end.    I  don't  pretend  to  understand  this
conclusion.  But I think you will agree with me that the end
of the Cold War marks the beginning of a new era.
3.      You as other movers and makers of East Asia's future
should prepare to play a role in  the  making  of  this  new
history,  history  in which Asia once again becomes the most
important cradle of human civilisation.
4.   Asian history has for too many hundreds of  years  been
an  appendage  of European history.  Our lives have for much
too long been too dependent on the events and aspirations of
nations elsewhere.
5.        It  is   time   to   dedicate   ourselves   to   a
non-confrontationist,  non-Xenophobic  Asian  Resurgence,  a
movement driven not by the outside or by resentment or anger
but by our  own  ambitions  for  our  own  people,  our  own
countries  and  our  own  region.    It  is  time  to commit
ourselves to that  long  and  awesome  process  whose  final
destination  should  be  a  durable  and comprehensive Asian
Renaissance founded on the finest traditions of Asia and  on
Asian ethics.
6.     The challenges are enormous.  Much will depend on how
much peace, how much stability and how  much  prosperity  we
can  generate  for  our  people  and  for  the region in the
decades to come.
7.      Obviously,  Asia  must  advance  over  the  broadest
geographical front.
8.   But I suspect that much of the inspiration, the impetus
and  the  drive for an Asian Renaissance, if it ever were to
come, will come from East Asia.
9.    Certainly we in East Asia  can  look  back  with  some
degree  of  pride  on what we have been able to achieve over
the last few decades.   It has  been  a  period  of  massive
trials,  tribulations  and transformations.   Fortunately it
has also been a time of achievements most remarkable.
10.  Most of the region is now a marketplace -- filled  with
the  ringing  sound  not of bugles and bullets but of bazaar
bargaining and stock market babble,  of  pile-driving  steam
hammers,  of roads and harbours and magnificent edifices, of
progress and growth.
11.  There are still disputes and threats and  words  spoken
in  anger.  But the forces that are at work are not those of
war and conquest but those of the market.
12.  But not for a century and  a  half  has  the  strategic
environment  of  East  Asia been as good as it is today.  We
can take reasonable satisfaction from this.
13.  Let us nevertheless all regard what we have achieved as
only the first installment  towards  the  Asian  Renaissance
that I speak of.
14.    Let  me  now  turn  to  the  third  leg  of the Asian
Resurgence  that  has  already  begun  and  the  most  basic
foundation of the Asian Resurgence yet to come: our dynamism
and prosperity.
15.   After all the current talk of "the East Asian Economic
Miracle", it is important to remind ourselves how  often  in
the  past,  the  leaders in the East threw up their hands in
despair, as they  predicted  not  "an  East  Asian  Economic
Miracle" but "the East Asian economic morass".
16.  At one point or another, every economy in East Asia has
been assumed to be economies without hope.  A ton of learned
treatises  explained  why  we  were  condemned  to  economic
stagnation or worse.  Even Japan had grave doubts about  the
future  of  the  Japanese economy. Indonesia and South Korea
were regarded very much in the way that the worst sub-Sahara
African countries are regarded today.
17.  The learned analysts have been confounded.  This region
of yesterday's "dominoes" is now clearly a region of humming
dynamos.  We will be the primary source of tomorrow's growth
and dynamism for the rest of the world.
18.   But there can be no resting  on  laurels.    The  vast
proportion  of  our  peoples  are still poor.   For them the
Economic  Miracle,  the  economic  growth  rates  are  quite
irrelevant.  They have no share in it.
19.    But  first  let  us  ensure that the present peaceful
relation between East Asian states is prolonged.  We did not
really work towards it.  But let us not let the accident  of
peace  be  allowed  to end in another accident, that of war.
We must now actively promote  peace  between  us  and  peace
among us.
20.    I  think it was the ancient Romans who said, "To have
peace you must prepare for  war."    But  really  we  cannot
afford  to  spend so much on military preparedness.  Today's
weapon systems are just too costly.  We will be  bankrupting
ourselves  trying  to deter each other.  We will be creating
tensions and  tensions  between  nations  do  not  encourage
economic  investments  and  long term development plans.  We
will not have the money for development.
21.  It should be the adage of the modern East  Asian  that:
if  you want peace, prepare for peace, work for peace, fight
for peace -- fight  for  peace  with  the  resolve  and  the
resources  that  are  generally  reserved by nations for the
prosecution of war.
22.  In the cause of cooperative  peace  --  cooperation  to
build   an  East  Asian  region  of  peace,  friendship  and
tranquility -- obviously there are many things  we  must  be
prepared  to  do  unilaterally.   Reassuring our neighbours,
abiding by the rules  of  international  law,    negotiation
instead  of  confrontation,  ensuring domestic stability and
order, behaving with  sensitivity  and  responsibility,  and
leading by example.
23.      Because   it   does   not   have   the  glamour  of
multilateralism, what is forgotten is that a great deal does
hinge on the development of good bilateral relations.    All
of  East  Asia will become a region of amity and goodwill if
we can build a seamless web of friendly bilateral relations.
24.  There are things that we can do at the  United  Nations
and  at  the  global  level  in pursuit of our commitment to
cooperative peace.  There are contributions to  be  made  at
the  minilateral  level, in terms of the smaller region, and
in terms of the bigger region of East Asia.  We in the ASEAN
Community can never afford to neglect ASEAN.  ASEAN can be a
base and an example of a much wider East Asian Cooperation.
25.  Choosing to build an East Asian region  of  peace  does
not  mean  turning away from other concerns, other interests
and other regions.  We should not.  Indeed we could not, for
all of us are trading nations.  We  need  the  rest  of  the
world.    The richer they are the better customers they will
26.  Fortunately, nations can do many  things  at  the  same
time.    The nations of East Asia have no choice but to do a
great many things at the same time if they wish to make  the
necessary  contribution  to peace, if they are committed, as
they should be, to peace.
27.  We have almost all done well if not very well.  An East
Asian regional economy, integrating at a remarkable rate, is
rising at breath-taking  speed.  The  integration  has  been
private  sector  driven,  a  source  of  real strength.   In
purchasing power parity terms,  East  Asia  is  already  the
largest  regional  economy  in  the  world,  bigger than the
Western European or the  NAFTA  regional  economy.    In  US
dollar  terms,  we  will  enter  the  21st century being the
largest regional economy in the world.
28.   Will we enter  the  21st  century  as  the  object  of
international  economic  relations  or  as a full subject of
international economic relations?  Will we be  "the  prize",
the  victim,  the  economic battlefield of the 21st century,
with no say in the wider world, whose rules will be  decided
elsewhere?   Or will we be full-fledged actors, able to play
our rightful role in global economics, and able to make  the
contribution  we  must  to the healthiest development of the
commonwealth of man?
29.   On the issue of  peace,   I   have   spoken   of   the
criticality    of   self   help   and   unilateral   action.
I    have    also    stressed   the   need  for  cooperation
between us.
30.    On  the  issue of prosperity, also, let me stress the
importance of self help and individual action.
31.  Just as I believe in the importance of ensuring an East
Asian system of cooperative peace,  I  believe  in  an  East
Asian system of cooperative prosperity.
32.    We  will compete against each other.  We must compete
against each other.  But we must also  cooperate  with  each
other.    And  we  must  establish  processes of cooperative
prosperity with each other, especially  as  our  competition
mounts,   especially   as   our   enormous   interdependence
33.   This is why I proposed  the  idea  of  the  East  Asia
Economic Group, now called the East Asia Economic Caucus.
34.      Since   the   campaign   of   lies  and  deliberate
disinformation on the EAEG  or  EAEC  concept  has  been  so
strong,  let  me  for the umpteenth time explain what is the
35.  Malaysia is opposed to the creation of  a  preferential
trading  arrangement,  or  a  free  trade area, or a customs
union, or an economic union for East Asia.  What we wish  to
see  is  the establishment of a loose consultative forum for
East Asia.  This forum should have both a  regional  and  an
extra-regional agenda.
36.    In  pursuit  of the regional agenda, the economies of
East Asia should meet at the ministerial  level  to  discuss
how  we  can  enrich  our regional economic cooperation.  In
pursuit of the external, extra-regional  agenda,  we  should
discuss   how   we   can   cooperate   to  ensure  an  open,
non-protectionist,  healthy  global  trading  and   economic
37.  Second, although regional trade is crucially important,
we  should not be confined to trade.  There is much that can
be done with regard to optimising joint  development  zones,
trans-border  investment,  technology sharing, tourism, even
labour  flows.     The  areas  for   cooperation   --   from
privatisation  to infrastructure development -- are too many
to enumerate.
38.  Third, on matters related to world trade,  we  must  be
champions of free and fair trade.
39.      Fourth,   we  must  champion  the  cause  of  "open
regionalism".   If we agree  to  do  something  on  regional
trade, we must ensure no new or higher measure of protection
and   discrimination  should  be  introduced  against  those
outside East Asia.  When others decide to  do  something  on
regional trade, we should act to ensure that they too adhere
to the principle of open regionalism.
40.    Fifth,  we  should  aspire  to  be  a  model for true
North-South cooperation.
41.    Sixth,  we  must  contribute  to  the  security   and
well-being on the part of all the economies of the region.
42.   Seventh, whatever cooperation we embark upon should be
grounded  in  the  principles  of  mutual  benefit,   mutual
respect,  egalitarianism, consensus and democracy.  Each one
of these basic principles is basic in itself.
43.  At the same time that we pursue these ends,  we  should
ensure  that  we  are  not confrontationist, that we are not
bullied and intimidated and that we  do  not  damage  ASEAN,
APEC,  and  other established processes; we should not allow
others to divide the Pacific, ASEAN or East  Asia;  we  must
not  be  cowed from speaking out against racism, exclusivism
and attempts to create closed trading blocs.
44.  And finally let us not be afraid to uphold and  defend
Asian  values.    We  are fortunate in that we could see the
results of the experiments with new ideologies and values by
others.   While the democratic western  liberals  may  claim
victory over the socialist/communist ideologies of the East,
the  West  itself  is  far  from  being  the  ideal society.
Materialism  and  extreme  hedonism  has  resulted  in   the
collapse  of  the  family  and  the institution of marriage.
Homosexuality is of course  found in all societies but  when
it  is  accepted  and  even glorified then the practice will
spread even among those not ambiguously created  by  nature.
Now  the  law  permits  men  to marry men and women to marry
women.   Worst still incest, marriage  between  brother  and
sister  is  no  longer  condemned.    And  soon  father  and
daughter, mother and son will pair off.
45.   Individual freedom knows no  limit.  In  the  name  of
individual  freedom  anything  can be done, even if it hurts
the community.  Liberal democracy is sacrosanct and may  not
be  tampered  with  even  when  it  is  obviously destroying
society and more.   And  all  the  while  new  freedoms  are
invented and old values derided.
46.    Asian  values  are  old  and orthodox.   The old, the
parents, the teachers, they are respected.    The  community
comes  before the individual.  The family is extended and is
responsible for its members, not the Government.  These  are
but  some  of the values which we accept and practise.  They
have not destroyed our society.  Indeed they have helped  us
to  maintain a balance in the contest between evil and good,
in a world that is getting ever more confused.    We  should
hang  on  to them despite the sneers of the liberals and the
47.  I think I owe it to you to explain why I believe in the
East Asian future that I have advocated above.
48.  What I am suggesting for East Asia is what has  already
worked for ASEAN.
49.    After a quarter century, the ASEAN Community is now a
haven of peace, of stability and of prosperity.
50.  History can never be made to repeat itself. But it  can
be a great teacher and the source of  great inspirations.
51.   I ask you now: why not an East Asian zone of peace, of
stability, of prosperity?  If we achieve it, we  may  change
the  course  of history; directly, the future of more than a
quarter of mankind in the East, indirectly, the  destiny  of
52.    An Asian Renaissance will not come in my lifetime.  I
pray that it will come in yours.