ASEAN marks 46th anniversary
|ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh.— VNA/VNS Photo
JAKATA (VNS) — A formal ceremony was held at the ASEAN headquarters in the Indonesian capital city, Jakarta, yesterday to mark the 46th founding anniversary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh was joined by Indonesian Deputy Foreign Minister Wardana and representatives of ASEAN members and partner countries at the event.
Opening the ceremony, the ASEAN Secretary General said the event marked a milestone on the bloc's path towards peace, security, stability, equality, democracy, development and prosperity.
Reviewing the association's 46-year journey, ASEAN Secretary General Minh emphasised that people are the centre in building and developing the ASEAN Community which, he said, has been made clear in the group's theme "Our People, Our Future Together" this year.
Apart from opportunities, ASEAN will have to face greater challenges when the deadline of forming the ASEAN Community by 2015 is nearing, Minh said.
Given this, he called on ASEAN member countries to increase intra-bloc solidarity and co-operation in order to cope with regional and global challenges, including those in food and energy security, climate change, maritime security, smuggling, and drug and trans-border crimes.
Addressing the event, Indonesian Deputy Foreign Minister Wardana said the 10-member group has shown off its enormous vitality through closer, more comprehensive and effective co-operation between the member countries.
The bloc's common voice has been raised significantly in the world arena, he said, stressing ASEAN's important and central role in ensuring peace, security and stability in the region.
President of the Committee of Permanent Representatives to ASEAN Emaleen Abd Rahman Teo, who is also Brunei's Ambassador to ASEAN, said the bloc has proven itself as one of the most successful regional organisations in the world over the past 46 years.
She emphasised the need to encourage young generations to get involved in the group's integration process and the formation of the ASEAN Community as the youth makes up 60 per cent of the ASEAN population. — VNA