Ten Southeast Asian leaders signed a landmark charter at the ASEAN summit today that puts the region on the path to creating a regional economic bloc by 2015. The bloc is modeled after the European Union—with free movement of goods, services, and investments in the region—but won’t include a common currency or tight integration. The charter also enshrines a commitment to democracy and human rights, even though the signers included a monarch and several military rulers. (Reuters)
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The Bottom Line
November 20, 2007
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