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PBBM vows to promote, protect PH interests in the 42nd Asean Summit in Indonesia

ASEAN Summit 2023

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. vowed to promote and to protect the country’s interests before the 42nd Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and Related Summits in Labuan Bajo, Indonesia.

“I will join other Leaders of ASEAN to advance our community-building efforts in the region and ensure the well-being and security of our people, in line with Indonesia’s chairmanship theme of “ASEAN Matters: Epicentrum of Growth,’” the President said in his departure speech at the Maharlika in Villamor Air Base, Pasay City on Tuesday.

Marcos added he would push for continued efforts toward economic growth, food and energy security, investment, combating transnational crimes and protecting migrant workers in crisis situations, among others.

The President said he and other ASEAN leaders will also exchange views on pressing issues of common concern such as developments in the South China Sea and the situation in Myanmar.

”I am always optimistic because all the interactions that we have had with the different leaders of ASEAN Member States, and for that matter APEC and all the APEC plus conferences that we’ve had, there seems to be a very clear area of commonality,” Marcos said.

“And as the theme of this ASEAN Summit is clearly manifesting, it is once again towards economic growth and to recognize that ASEAN and Southeast Asia have been the partners that the other parts of the world – and I speak therefore of India, I speak of China, I speak of the European Union, the United States, Latin America, even some elements of Africa – look to Southeast Asia as the growth center for the global economy.”

The 10-member ASEAN will be joined by Timor-Leste, attending the summit for the first time as an observer.

“I’m looking forward to a bilateral meeting with the leaders of Timor-Leste so that we can discuss their prospective membership in ASEAN,” Marcos said.

While in the regional meeting, the chief executive will also be participating in the 15th Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines-East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) Summit as well as various interfaces of the ASEAN Leaders with the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA), and Representatives from the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC), ASEAN Youth, and the High-Level Task Force on the ASEAN Community Post-2025 Vision.

“In these meetings, we will have the opportunity to highlight the importance of strengthening cooperation in the BIMP-EAGA sub-region to sustain its thriving economy, the strong partnership between the executive and legislative bodies of ASEAN, the pivotal role of private sector and the youth in advancing growth and shaping the future as well as the future direction of the ASEAN Vision,” Marcos said.

“I look forward to our productive engagements with our ASEAN partners,” he added.

Marcos is attending the 42nd ASEAN Summit at the invitation of Indonesian President Joko Widodo, this year’s ASEAN Summit chair. | PND

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