At present, for Thailand and its Asean counterparts, there is much to be happy about. The countries have managed to buck the economic woes from the West.
In addition, Asean has also seen a US re-engagement that will contribute to the balance of power, the upcoming Asean Economic Community in 2015, and the latest and probably foremost development, Myanmar on the rise.
Since the Myanmar elections of 2010, the world has been taken by surprise. Presently, the transition in Myanmar look promising. The old regime itself has put great efforts into transforming Myanmar. The democratisation process began at the same time as the Arab Spring was rampant in the Middle East. The release of Aung San Suu Kyi and political prisoners and the drafting of the highly anticipated foreign investment bill are positive developments that bode well for Myanmar and the region. Moreover, foreign observers were elated by the result of the by-elections in April 2012 which gave the National League for Democracy (NLD), the main opposition party, 43 out of 44 representative seats for which they contested. Albeit not adequate to give the NLD a parliamentary majority, the election outcome reflects a gradual shift in power from a cadre of military elites to the people.
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