President Rodrigo Duterte is the new Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) 2017 Chair. He accepted the 2017 ASEAN Chairmanship on Thursday at the closing ceremony of the 28th – 29th ASEAN Summits in Vientiane, Laos. Read on to learn more about it.
Here are three fast facts about Duterte as the new ASEAN 2017 Chair.
1. Lao People's Democratic Republic (PDR) Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith officially turned over the ASEAN Chairmanship to the Republic of the Philippines on Thursday.
“Your Excellency, President Rodrigo Duterte, on this auspicious occasion, I have the honour to hand over the ASEAN Chairmanship to the Republic of the Philippines starting from the 1st of January 2017,” ASEAN cited Lao PDR Prime Minister Sisoulit as saying.
“I trust that under the Philippines' ASEAN Chairmanship in 2017, in addition to the meaningful celebration of the 50th Anniversary of ASEAN, the ASEAN Community will continue to gain new achievements in order to turn the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 into reality with concrete outcomes,” he added.
Sisoulit promised his country’s full support for the Philippines' ASEAN Chairmanship in 2017.
2. After accepting the 2017 ASEAN Chairmanship, Duterte delivered a speech at the 2016 ASEAN Summit’s closing ceremony.
President Duterte said that he will highlight ASEAN as a global player with the people’s interest at its core. He will also showcase it as a model of regionalism.
“The Philippines is ready and willing to steer and guide the Association,” CNN Philippines reported him as saying. “But crucial to the realization of our goals is the cooperation and support of all ASEAN member-states and our dialogue partners.”
He said that the country will enhance cooperation and pursue iniative with its global partners to ensure that the citizens of ASEAN will be peaceful, secure, stable and will have growth.
3 . The theme for the ASEAN 2017 Summit in Manila is “Partnering for Change, Engaging the World.”
“Our theme ‘Partnering for Change, Engaging the World’ captures our resolve to consolidate our community for our peoples with the sense of togetherness and common identity, ready and able to take our rightful place in the global community of nations,” Duterte said.
He also spoke about the 50th anniversary of the founding of the ASEAN, which coincides with the Philippines-ASEAN chairmanship. ASEAN was founded on Aug. 8, 1967.
“It will be an occasion for us to set the tone for the next 50 years," he added.
The ASEAN Summit 2016 theme in Laos is “Turning Vision into Reality for a Dynamic ASEAN Community.”
“It has been a great honor and pleasure for the Lao PDR to host and welcome Leaders of ASEAN Member States, ASEAN’s Dialogue Partners, Secretary-General of the United Nations, Secretary-General of ASEAN, and all distinguished guests and delegates in Vientiane,” Lao PDR Prime Minister Sisoulit said in his closing remarks.
After attending the 28th – 29th ASEAN Summits in Laos, President Duterte will proceed to Indonesia for a working visit.
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