Antimicrobial susceptibility of 996 isolates of Streptococcus pneumoniae from clinical specimens was investigated in 11 Asian countries from September 1996 to June 1997. Korea had the greatest frequency of nonsusceptible strains to penicillin with 79.7%, followed by Japan (65.3%), Vietnam (60.8%), Thailand (57.9%), Sri Lanka (41.2%), Taiwan (38.7%), Singapore (23.1%), Indonesia (21.0%), China (9.8%), Malaysia (9.0%), and India (3.8%). Serotypes 23F and 19F were the most common. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) of 154 isolates from Asian countries showed several major PFGE patterns. The serotype 23F Spanish clone shared the same PFGE pattern with strains from Korea, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Malaysia. Fingerprinting analysis of pbp1a, pbp2x, and pbp2b genes of 12 strains from six countries also showed identical fingerprints of penicillin-binding protein genes in most strains. These data suggest the possible introduction and spread of international epidemic clones into Asian countries and the increasing problems of pneumococcal drug resistance in Asian countries for the first time.