The article argues that regionalism in East Asia since the end of the Cold War has been largely shaped by the interactions of China-US relations, influencing and determining the development and transformation of economic and political cooperation and integration in the region. The paper intends to offer a framework for understanding the historical inter-connections between China-US relations in East Asia during different periods and their dynamic nexus with the evolution of the regional integration process. The theoretical reflection of the paper posits that the neo-functionalism theory, which is largely generated and shaped by the historical evolution of the EU political project, cannot be applied as an overall conceptual framework in understanding regionalism in East Asia. Conventional theories of international relations driven by power rivalry, realism, geopolitics, political economy, balance of power, etc, still have a determining effect East Asia in defining “functions”, influencing the process and determining the outcome
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