As globalization has lowered barriers to international commerce, transnational organized crime has flourished. In East Asia, some of the more common forms of transnational crime are human trafficking, money laundering and the smuggling of illicit materials ranging from drugs to timber and wildlife to weapons. Combating transnational crime, which generates billions of dollars and threatens human security worldwide, requires swift, multifaceted and collaborative responses from a variety of countries.
On June 30, the Brookings Institution hosted a discussion with four visiting fellows in the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies (CNAPS). The discussion focused on human trafficking across the China-Myanmar border and in Taiwan, money laundering in Hong Kong and the smuggling of illicit materials in Southeast Asia, including nuclear technology. The visiting fellows offered suggestions for domestic and international strategies to counter these crimes. Vanda Felbab-Brown, a fellow with the 21st Century Defense Initiative at Brookings, moderated the conversation and discussed how to mitigate illegal logging and illegal trade in wildlife in Asia. At the event she released a new paper, “The Disappearing Act: The Illicit Trade in Wildlife in Asia.”
After the program, panelists took audience questions.