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La Trobe academics to speak ahead of ASEAN Summit

La Trobe University 3 mins read

This year is the 50th anniversary of ASEAN-Australian relations. The 2024 ASEAN-Australian Special Summit will be held in Melbourne, March 4 – 6, with La Trobe Asia playing a vital role in organising the maritime pillar for the summit. La Trobe academics are taking part to speak about maritime security. This is the second time Australia will host leaders of ASEAN member states.

Australia's partnership with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is vital engagement with the Southeast Asia region. Australia and ASEAN member states are connected through economies; a shared interest in a region that is stable, peaceful, and prosperous; and people-to people connections.

The Summit will bring leaders together to look ahead to the next 50 years of ASEAN-Australia cooperation. The Special Summit will also bring together emerging leaders and experts to strengthen economic, climate and clean energy, and maritime cooperation efforts.

Topics for the summit include:

  • The ocean economy and maritime security issues; perspectives on regional maritime challenges and opportunities.

  • Business, Emerging Leaders, Climate and Clean Energy, and Maritime Cooperation.

  • Greater trade and investment between Australia and Southeast Asia and the collective green energy transition.

  • Ways to strengthen two-way trade and investment.

  • Long-term challenges that ASEAN and Australia jointly face and identifying areas for further cooperation.

  • Opportunities to further the energy transition across the region.

La Trobe academics speaking at the conference are available for interviews:

Professor Bec Strating
Convenor of the 2024 ASEAN-Australia Special Summit Maritime Cooperation Forum (March 3) and Director of La Trobe Asia and lead of the Blue Security consortium, which has partnered with the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit Taskforce and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to organise and delivers activities within the maritime pillar of the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit.


Director of La Trobe Asia and Professor of International Relations at La Trobe
E: M: 0400 287 758

Professor Strating can discuss the following topics:

  • Australian foreign policy
  • Australian defence policy
  • Maritime politics and security in Asia
  • Australian relations with Southeast Asia
  • Maritime security and disputes in Southeast Asia

The following can be attributed to Professor Bec Strating:

The Summit highlights the importance of Australia’s multifaceted relationships with the countries of Southeast Asia and ASEAN as an institution. Maritime conflict and contestation will again be front and centre of regional and global security in 2024. Maritime and sovereignty disputes and contestation in key domains such as the South and East China Seas will again play an important role shaping Asia’s security order in 2024 and beyond. Australia recognises the importance of relations with ASEAN states to address the vast range of non-traditional security challenges emerging in and from the surrounding oceans and seas, supporting vital blue economies and humanitarian interests, and ensuring a maritime order centred upon international law of the sea.”


Nick Bisley
Speaker at the ASEAN maritime conference (March 3)

Dean Humanities and Social Sciences School Operations
E: M: 0422 980 870

Professor Bisley can discuss the following topics:

  • Asia’s regional institutions
  • Great power politics in Asia
  • Asia’s international relations
  • Australian foreign and defence policy
  • Globalisation and trade in Asia

The following can be attributed to Professor Nick Bisley:


“This special summit indicates not only that Australia and ASEAN have a long history – Australia was the Southeast Asian group’s first dialogue partner – but that Australia sees engagement with ASEAN as critical to its interests. It’s also a good reminder that while regional politics has become heavily fixated on US-China rivalry, there’s a lot more going on in the region and there’s many ways that a country like Australia can advance its interests in Asia.”

For any other media enquiries, please contact the Media Team at La Trobe University on

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