Avery Poole

Dr Avery Poole is a Lecturer in International Relations in the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne

President Joko Widodo made an appeal to Southeast Asian unity in the face of regional instability as the ASEAN Summit kicked off in Laos this week. Dr Avery Poole writes that this may bode well for Indonesia’s traditional leadership role in ASEAN but we are unlikely to see significant progress on key regional governance challenges.

President Joko Widodo is often portrayed as more inward looking than his predecessor, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. This would seem to be reflected in the Indonesian approach toward ASEAN under Jokowi. But as Dr Avery Poole argues, the reality is more complex.

One candidate accuses the Australian Government of “phobia”, the other of a “lack of trust”. As Avery Poole explains, the signals for Australia-Indonesia relations are not good, regardless of who wins on 9 July.