ASEAN Community building process

0 CommentsPrint E-mail Xinhua, October 29, 2010
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The 17th Association Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit will be held in Vietnamese capital city of Hanoi on Thursday, marking a new step in the ASEAN integration. "Towards the ASEAN Community: from vision to action" is the theme of the 17th ASEAN Summit.

ASEAN, as stipulated in the ASEAN Charter that entered into December 2008, comprises three pillars, namely the ASEAN Political- Security Community, ASEAN Economic Community, and ASEAN Socio- Cultural Community. The ASEAN Charter provides guide to ASEAN people to move forward to one vision, one identity and one community.

The idea of a free trade area among ASEAN was raised at the fourth ASEAN Summit in 1992. ASEAN leaders expect to push forward cooperation level and economic integration through trade liberalization, so as to enhance the overall strength of ASEAN.

Following Asian Financial Crisis, ASEAN countries shared a strong feeling that only by building various mechanisms within the region, could ASEAN countries be resilient to challenges from outside and ensure regional security and stability. Hence, an idea of ASEAN Community was born.

At the 9th ASEAN Summit in 2003, the ASEAN Leaders decided that an ASEAN Community shall be established. At the 10th ASEAN Summit in 2004, ASEAN leaders adopted the Plans of Action of the ASEAN Security Community and ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community.

At the 12th ASEAN Summit in January 2007, the leaders affirmed their strong commitment to accelerating the establishment of an ASEAN Community by 2015 and signed the Cebu Declaration on the Acceleration of the Establishment of an ASEAN Community by 2015.

At the 13th ASEAN Summit in November 2007, ASEAN leaders signed the ASEAN Charter and The Declaration on the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint

At the 14th ASEAN Summit in February 2009, ASEAN leaders signed the Cha-am Hua Hin Declaration on the Roadmap for an ASEAN Community (2009-2015).

At the 16th ASEAN Summit in April 2010, ASEAN countries signed the Protocol to the ASEAN Charter on Dispute Settlement Mechanisms, which is expected to help facilitate the implementation of ASEAN Charter and Community building.

To enhance capacity building, ASEAN has set up ASEAN Coordinating Council and three ASEAN Community Councils including the ASEAN Political-Security Community Council, ASEAN Economic Community Council and ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Council.

ASEAN, established in 1967, groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

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