PHL to further promote cooperation with ASEAN regional partners, says DFA exec

ANGELES CITY, Pampanga-- The Philippines, as chair of ASEAN 2017, will further promote cooperation with the regional partners to attain the vision of an integrated, peaceful and stable Association of South East Asian Nations community.

Zaldy Patron, executive director of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), in his welcome message during the pillar launch of the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community at the Marquee Mall here Tuesday, said the Philippines will work more closely with the ASEAN neighboring countries to effect possible change in the lives of the people within the region.

"We will also strengthen ASEAN partnership with the rest of the world in terms of addressing mutual benefits and interests while upholding ASEAN's neutrality, unity and solidarity," Patron said.

He said the Philippines, as hosts to the 30th and 31st Summit, has the responsibility to focus on agenda topics that will specifically highlight what the community needs, anchored on the three pillars, namely ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community, ASEAN Economic Community and ASEAN Political-Security Community.

Patron also said that there are six thematic priorities which were laid down by President Rodrigo Duterte and these are "A People-Oriented; People Centered ASEAN; Peace And Stability in the Region; Maritime Security and Cooperation; Inclusive, Innovation-Led Growth; Resilient ASEAN and ASEAN: A Model Of Regionalism, A Global Player.

"The Philippines will be pushing for specific advocacies and initiatives to be fleshed out into these six thematic priorities. We will be advancing our causes as we host close to 120 meetings this year, including two ASEAN Summits, 15 Ministerial Meetings and 31 Senior Officials' Meetings," he said.

In addition, Patron said the Philippines will organize various commemorative activities for the ASEAN's 50th year. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency