1. Calling Nominations for ASEAN Champions of Biodiversity, ASEAN Secretariat, 30 April 2010
  2. Keeping the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) 2015 in Sight, Singapore, 29 April 2010
  3. Increasing Clean Energy Development in ASEAN, ASEAN Secretariat, 19 April 2010
  4. Secretary-General of ASEAN Briefs Diplomatic Community on 16th Summit Outcomes, ASEAN Secretariat, 16 April 2010
  5. ASEAN Women Week Kicks Off, ASEAN Secretariat, 14 April 2010
  6. UNIFEM Renews Commitment to Support ASEAN on Gender Issues, ASEAN Secretariat, 12 April 2010
  7. Post-Summit Briefing, Presented by Secretary-General of ASEAN, Ha Noi, 9 April 2010
  8. 16th ASEAN Summit Concludes, Ha Noi, 9 April 2010
  9. You are Invited: Post-Summit Briefing by ASEAN SG Surin Pitsuwan, Ha Noi, 8 April 2010
  10. From Vision to Action: 16th ASEAN Summit Kicks off, Ha Noi, 8 April 2010
  11. Protocol on Dispute Settlement Mechanisms Signed, Ha Noi, 8 April 2010
  12. Communication Plan for ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Adopted, Ha Noi, 7 April 2010
  13. Inaugurated: ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children, Ha Noi, 7 April 2010
  14. 16th ASEAN Summit to Convene This Week, ASEAN Secretariat, 5 April 2010


Calling Nominations for ASEAN Champions of Biodiversity
ASEAN Secretariat, 30 April 2010

Regional biodiversity conservation and advocacy projects now stand a chance to win an ASEAN-wide recognition programme. The programme aims to identify leaders among the private/corporate sector, media and youth, from which a cadre of champions will be selected to serve as Ambassadors of Goodwill for biodiversity.

The “ASEAN Champions of Biodiversity” will award the winners token cash prizes, in addition to year-round opportunities to speak before business, youth, and media leaders, and during forums, workshops and conferences in ASEAN Member States sponsored by the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) and the ASEAN Foundation. The winners will also be recognised in October 2010 in time for the Tenth Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity. A publication of best practices will also be produced based on the stories of the winners and finalists.

The ASEAN Secretariat, the European Union, the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity and UNESCO (the United Nations Environmental, Scientific and Cultural Organization) are key partners for the project.

The deadline for submission of nominations is 15 July 2010. For more information, visit www.aseanbiodiversity.org



Keeping the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) 2015 in Sight
Singapore, 29 April 2010

With just six years remaining before the realisation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015, a greater sense of urgency is necessary to achieve the goal of the AEC and to continue to maintain ASEAN’s centrality, said the Deputy Secretary-General (DSG) of the ASEAN Economic Community today.

“The building of the AEC will need strong leadership, vision, political will, as well as strong mechanisms and institutions to support coordination and implementation, both at the regional and national levels,“ said DSG S. Pushpanathan at the ASEAN Roundtable 2010 held in Singapore. He also called for the transformation of the mindset of ASEAN countries from “national interest to regional action” to “regional interest to national action”.

Themed “Achieving the AEC 2015: Challenges for Member Countries”, the forum brings together some 200 representatives from the academia and research institutes, government officials and media in the region to examine and look at the challenges that the ASEAN countries are facing in attaining this goal.

In his keynote address, DSG Pushpanathan said that “the prospects for ASEAN and AEC are bright.” After an anaemic 1.5% growth in 2009, ASEAN is expected to achieve a combined growth of 4.9% to 5.6% this year. ASEAN has also made significant progress towards achieving the AEC since the adoption of the AEC Blueprint in 2007, a document which sets up the measures that ASEAN countries should implement in order to achieve this goal. Some of the achievements include zero tariffs among the ASEAN-6 countries; enhanced trade facilitation measures; realisation of the ASEAN-China, ASEAN-Korea and Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreements; and further liberalisation in services.

Despite the progress, DSG Pushpanathan recognised that challenges abound. He emphasised that the private sector must be the principal driver of regional economic integration and proposed holding more regular sector-specific dialogues with the business community and to open up some technical meetings of ASEAN in the economic arena to the business community.

The ASEAN Roundtable 2010 is organised by the ASEAN Studies Centre, the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies and Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung.

For the Keynote Address by DSG Pushpanathan, please click here.



Increasing Clean Energy Development in ASEAN
ASEAN Secretariat, 19 April 2010

The United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) and the ASEAN Secretariat will convene an ASEAN Clean Energy, Trade, Technology and Investment Forum in Manila on 20-21 April 2010. The Forum comes in the wake of President Obama’s commitment in 2009 to the ASEAN Leaders to explore cooperation in renewable and alternative energy.

Discussions at the Forum will be on the diversification of the energy supplies of ASEAN Member States; financing access to clean energy; deploying low carbon, green buildings; and energy efficiency through innovative technologies. Clean energy projects and business opportunities are also on the agenda.

Prioritising activities to promote alternative energy resource development and energy conservation projects worldwide, USTDA has committed more than $44 million in support of the energy sector, accounting for 45 percent of its total commitments in the ASEAN region.

The USTDA advances economic development and US commercial interests in developing and middle-income countries. The agency funds technical assistance, feasibility studies, training, orientation visits and business workshops to support development of modern infrastructure and a fair and open trading environment.



Secretary-General of ASEAN Briefs Diplomatic Community on 16th Summit Outcomes
ASEAN Secretariat, 16 April 2010

The Secretary-General of ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, today shared the major outcomes of the 16th ASEAN Summit with members of the diplomatic community and representatives from international organisations. Members of the media were also present at the briefing held at the ASEAN Secretariat. The 16th ASEAN Summit was recently held in Ha Noi, from 8 to 9 April 2010.

Dr Surin said that the Briefing is an attempt to make ASEAN more accessible to the people. He also said that such a Briefing is a way to thank the ASEAN stakeholders for their support for the ASEAN community building efforts.

Among the highlights of the Summit, the Secretary-General touched on the ASEAN Leaders’ determination to maintain ASEAN’s central role in the emerging regional architecture and the inauguration of the ASEAN Commission on Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children.

The Briefing concluded with a question and answer session.



ASEAN Women Week Kicks Off
ASEAN Secretariat, 14 April 2010

Leading up to its 1st anniversary on 22 April 2010, the ASEAN Secretariat Women’s Wing (AWW) is hosting the ASEAN Women Week, a series of week-long programmes comprising talk shows, workshops, discussions and networking meetings.

The ASEAN Women Week, which kicked off today with a celebration at the ASEAN Secretariat, was inaugurated by the Secretary-General of ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, who, in his remarks said that women and children in the region are “half of ASEAN and the future of ASEAN”. Also present at the event was Indonesia’s State Minister for Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection, H.E. Linda Gumelar.

The event also introduced the ASEAN Women Solidarity Song and the ASEAN Women Scholar Awards to an audience of government officials, heads of Missions, international organisations, public and private sector representatives, and women-led NGOs. At the function, the Awards were given to students of Universitas Indonesia who need financial assistance to complete their dissertation or advanced studies. Dr Surin said that in the future, AWW could explore similar scholarship programmes for overseas universities.

AWW is a non-profit entity whose activities aim to boost awareness of ASEAN and of the cultures of ASEAN among women and children in the region. The Patron of AWW is Mrs Alisa Pitsuwan, while the President is Mrs Venilla Pushpanathan.

For further information, please click here.



UNIFEM Renews Commitment to Support ASEAN on Gender Issues
ASEAN Secretariat, 12 April 2010

The Secretary General of ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, had a meeting today with Regional Programme Director, United Nation Fund for Women (UNIFEM) East and Southeast Asia, Dr Jean D’Chunha and exchanged views on a range of issues relating to gender equality and the empowerment of women in ASEAN. They also discussed the implementation of various regional and international instruments. such as the United Nations Convention on Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (BPFA), and the 2004 Declaration on the Advancement of Women (DEVAW).

During the meeting, Dr D’Chunha reaffirmed UNIFEM’s commitment to work closely with ASEAN in the implementation of the ASEAN-UNIFEM Framework for Cooperation which was signed in June 2006. She said that she is satisfied that a number of activities have been implemented under the Framework and that UNIFEM will continue to engage the ASEAN Committee on Women (ACW) and relevant CSOs in the region.

Moreover, Dr D’Chunha added that UNIFEM is interested to explore how it could assist the work of the newly established ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children (ACWC). UNIFEM is also interested to support the capacity of the ASEAN Secretariat in its role as the secretariat of the ACWC. UNIFEM would also like explore the possibility of working with the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) on gender mainstreaming in its work programme. Noting that ASEAN is currently developing an instrument to protect and promote the rights of migrant workers, Dr D’Chunha said UNIFEM could also work with ASEAN in addressing the gender aspect in the instrument.

Dr Surin welcomed the various new initiatives of UNIFEM and encouraged UNIFEM to continue its work to promote the awareness of all levels of ASEAN societies, including students, on gender issues and to also undertake research work at grass-root levels to address specific issues, needs and problems that ASEAN is facing relating to the overall well-being of women.



Post-Summit Briefing, Presented by Secretary-General of ASEAN
Ha Noi, 9 April 2010

Following the conclusion of the 16th ASEAN Summit that took place in Ha Noi on 8-9 April 2010, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, Secretary-General of ASEAN, presented an overview of the major outcomes from the Summit on 9 April 2010 (Friday), 3:00-4:30 p.m. (GMT+7).

Speaking from the Vietnam Development Information Center in Ha Noi, Dr Surin interacted with senior government officials, Ambassadors, the media, civil society, academia, private and business sectors, and international organisations in seven countries — Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam — using the Global Development Learning Network (GDLN)’s video-conference facilities.

The Briefing was organised by the ASEAN Secretariat in collaboration with the World Bank and GDLN in the Asia Pacific.

To watch the video of the Briefing, please go to http://210.137.74.228/viewerportal/vmc/channel.do?channelId=1973981624.



16th ASEAN Summit Concludes, Ha Noi, 9 April 2010
Ha Noi, 9 April 2010

The 16th ASEAN Summit, held in Ha Noi from 8 to 9 April 2010, with the theme “Towards the ASEAN Community: From Vision to Action”, drew to a close this morning with a Retreat Session for the ASEAN Leaders at the National Convention Center. The discussions followed on from yesterday’s Plenary Session and also the Working Dinner. The Summit was attended by the ASEAN Leaders, while Thailand was represented by its Foreign Minister.

The Retreat was followed by a press conference by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung of Viet Nam. The ASEAN Leaders and the Secretary-General of ASEAN then called on President Nguyen Minh Triet who also hosted a lunch at the Presidential Palace.

In a Chairman’s Statement of the Summit released after the Retreat, the Leaders expressed satisfaction with the progress in implementing the ASEAN Charter and the Roadmap for the ASEAN Community and reaffirmed their strong commitment to speed up the effective implementation through concrete measures and activities.

The Leaders agreed that ASEAN would act swiftly at the national, regional and global levels to achieve sustained economic recovery and development for ASEAN in the aftermath of the global economic and financial crisis. In the Statement, they also said that they would focus efforts on ensuring financial stability, fostering regional infrastructure development and connectivity, promoting sustainable development and narrowing the development gap. In this regard, they adopted the ASEAN Leaders’ Statement on Sustained Recovery and Development. The Leaders highlighted the need to promote Green Growth, including the development of green technology, its application and investment.

ASEAN Connectivity was high on the agenda of the 16th ASEAN Summit, and the Leaders took note of the on-going efforts in developing a Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity, which is to be submitted to the 17th ASEAN Summit in October 2010. The first meeting of the High Level Task Force on ASEAN Connectivity which was held on 9-10 March 2010 in Ha Noi had produced the key elements and principles for the Master Plan. The Leaders emphasised that priority should be given to enhancing intra-ASEAN connectivity, including the need to complete the missing air, sea and land transportation links in Mekong and other sub-regions of ASEAN building on achievements of existing frameworks. It was further reaffirmed that priority would be given to transport, information communication technology (ICT), energy and cross border facilitation for the smooth movement of people,  goods and services.

In the area of climate change, the Leaders also reaffirmed their strong commitment to intensify efforts to address climate change and in this regard adopted the ASEAN Leaders’ Statement on Joint Response to Climate Change. An ASEAN Action Plan on Climate Change will be explored.

The issue of ASEAN Centrality continued to be on the agenda of the Summit and the Leaders stressed the importance of and determination to maintain ASEAN’s central role in the emerging regional architecture. They agreed to adopt a two-pronged approach with priority given to the acceleration of ASEAN’s integration and community building while intensifying ASEAN’s external relations and ensuring ASEAN’s role as the driving force in regional cooperation frameworks. The Leaders also said that any new regional framework or process should be complementary to and built upon existing regional mechanisms and the principle of ASEAN’s centrality.

The Leaders further endorsed the exchange between Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam in their turns for the ASEAN Chairmanship and welcomed Indonesia as the ASEAN Chair in 2011.

Please click here for the:



You are Invited: Post-Summit Briefing by ASEAN SG Surin Pitsuwan
Ha Noi, 8 April 2010

Following the conclusion of the 16th ASEAN Summit taking place in Ha Noi, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, Secretary-General of ASEAN, will present an overview of the major outcomes from the Summit on 9 April 2010 (Friday), 2:30-4:30 p.m. (GMT+7).

Speaking from the Vietnam Development Information Center in Ha Noi, Dr Surin will interact with members of the public, media, civil society, academia, private and business sectors, and international organisations in seven countries — Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam — using the Global Development Learning Network (GDLN)’s video-conference facilities.

A video streaming of the briefing is publicly available at http://streaming.jointokyo.org.

This Post-Summit Briefing is organised by the ASEAN Secretariat in collaboration with the World Bank and GDLN in the Asia Pacific.

Note: Minimum Client Requirements to view TDLC web-streaming: Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Vista®, Mac OS®, Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher, Firefox® 2.0 or higher, Safari®3.2.1, Microsoft Silverlight 1.1 or higher.



From Vision to Action: 16th ASEAN Summit Kicks off, Ha Noi, 8 April 2010
Ha Noi, 8 April 2010

The singing of the ASEAN Anthem and a speech by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung of Viet Nam marked the official start of the 16th ASEAN Summit in Ha Noi this afternoon. There was also a rousing display of music and dance, adding colour and vibrancy to the Opening Ceremony.

In his Opening Statement, PM Nguyen Tan Dung stressed that the most important thing for ASEAN to carry out now would be to join hands in action, implementing concrete steps and measures to materialise the set goals and plans.

“The overall theme for the year 2010 – ‘Towards the ASEAN Community: From Vision to Action’ – underlines ASEAN’s focus and strong sense of action for this year and beyond,” said the Prime Minister, who is the current ASEAN Chair. Viet Nam’s Chairmanship of ASEAN in 2010 coincides with the 15th anniversary of its accession to the Association. The last time Viet Nam hosted the Summit was in 1998.

Noting the responsibility of the ASEAN Summit process to set directions and solutions, the Prime Minister called for the finalisation of related legal documents in the implementation of the ASEAN Charter and to give proper guidance to accelerate the implementation of agreements ASEAN community-building. The Prime Minister said that “it would be important to promote the ‘culture of compliance’, strengthen coordination of implementing agencies and the mobilisation of resources.”

Due to the connectivity and inter-dependency of economies, the Prime Minister also called on ASEAN to push up the region’s economic integration and find a suitable model for sustainable economic development, enhance East Asia economic and financial cooperation where ASEAN plays a central role and actively contribute to the common efforts of the international community through global solutions.

After the Opening Ceremony, the ASEAN Leaders convened in plenary session, where a wide-range of issues including the implementation of the ASEAN Charter and Roadmap for an ASEAN Community and ASEAN Connectivity were discussed. The ASEAN Leaders will proceed to a Working Dinner later this evening and continue their discussions in Retreat session tomorrow morning. Climate change and other regional and international issues are also on the agenda. A Chairman’s Statement will be issued tomorrow.

Earlier, the ASEAN Heads of Government/State had a meeting with representatives of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA). The meeting, which started during the 14th ASEAN Summit, is part of the commitment of the ASEAN Leaders to build a people-centred ASEAN through greater participation of the people in the region’s community-building process.

Click here for the full speech of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung.



Protocol on Dispute Settlement Mechanisms Signed
Ha Noi, 8 April 2010

The Foreign Ministers of ASEAN today signed the Protocol to the ASEAN Charter on Dispute Settlement Mechanisms, further signaling ASEAN’s transformation into a rules-based organisation. The Protocol aims to put in place a mechanism to help ASEAN Member States resolve disputes concerning the interpretation or application of the ASEAN Charter. The Protocol also applies to other ASEAN instruments which do not specifically provide for dispute settlement mechanisms.

The Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Viet Nam, H.E. Pham Gia Khiem, in his statement, said that the Foreign Ministers of ASEAN had reaffirmed their commitment to finalise three other instruments, namely the rules for references to the ASEAN Summit; the procedures for authorisation under international law and domestic law; and the rules of procedure for requesting the ASEAN Secretariat to interpret the ASEAN Charter, of which the first one shall become an integral part of the Protocol. The Foreign Ministers have now tasked their senior officials to complete the drafting of the instruments as soon as possible, and to submit a progress report at the 43rd ASEAN Ministerial Meeting in July 2010 in Ha Noi.

The Protocol would now be subjected to the respective internal procedures of the ASEAN Member States after the adoption and inclusion of the rules for references to the ASEAN Summit in the Protocol.

The signing of the Protocol, which would facilitate the implementation of the ASEAN Charter, follows that of the Agreement on the Privileges and Immunities of ASEAN that was signed by the Foreign Ministers in October 2009 in Cha-Am Hua Hin, Thailand.

The signing ceremony was held at the National Convention Center after the conclusion of the 6th Meeting of the ASEAN Coordinating Council (ACC) which is mandated to prepare for the 16th ASEAN Summit. Cognisant of the need for enhancing ASEAN identity, the ACC adopted the Guidelines on the Use of the ASEAN Anthem, Name and Emblem. The ACC also called for the development of an ASEAN Communications Strategy in order to convey to both the ASEAN peoples and the world community about ASEAN. The ACC stressed that a people knowledgeable of ASEAN’s purposes and principles would be in a better position to contribute towards the ASEAN Community-building process.



Progress Achieved in AEC Implementation
Ha Noi, 7 April 2010

In the first two years of the implementation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), 73.6% of the targets set in the AEC Blueprint has been achieved. The rate of progress, contained in a new publication, “ASEAN Economic Community Scorecard”, was tabled at the 3rd AEC Council held in Ha Noi today in the run-up to the 16th ASEAN Summit to be held here. The scorecard mechanism was developed to monitor the implementation of measures listed in the AEC Blueprint. The report is the first AEC Scorecard and covers the 2008-2009 period.

The rate of progress includes the implementation of various measures, activities and related initiatives in the four key AEC components, namely the creation of a single market and production base; the establishment of a competitive economic region; equitable economic development; and integration into the global economy.

Introducing the report at the meeting, the Secretary-General of ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, said that the report which has been made available at www.asean.org represents concerted efforts to include the ownership and participation of all stakeholders including the business community in the realisation of the AEC. Inputs and suggestions from the ASEAN business community and peoples will help to enhance the information base on AEC and contribute to a better understanding of the ways forward toward realising the goals of AEC.

The scorecard also highlighted the increase in the number of ASEAN legal instruments related to the AEC such as agreements and protocols. As of 31 December 2009, 91 out of 124 AEC legal instruments have entered into force, which represents 73% of all AEC-related legal instruments compared to 50% in 2002. The scorecard also highlighted several measures such as the national single window project which would have to be implemented expeditiously. To facilitate the full operationalisation of national single window, ASEAN is looking at signing an Memorandum of Understanding for the ASEAN Single Window Pilot Project in June this year.

For the AEC Scorecard, please click here.



Communication Plan for ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Adopted
Ha Noi, 7 April 2010

A Communication Plan for the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC) to enhance public awareness and shape their perceptions, and generate greater participation of the public in building the ASCC by 2015, was adopted in Ha Noi today. The ASCC Communication Plan, which was adopted at the 3rd Meeting of the ASCC Council aims to illustrate the relevancy and need for the ASCC to the general public.

The Communication Plan also explains the impact and benefits in terms of what the ASCC will do to realise an ASEAN Community that is people-centred and socially responsible. A call to action to the stakeholders to support the ASCC is also highlighted.

The ASCC Council had also welcomed the inauguration of the ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children (ACWC) which was held earlier in the day. The ACWC set to work immediately after its inauguration with its first meeting held after the inauguration ceremony and will continue on 8 April.

The ASCC Council is part of a series of meetings running up to the 16th ASEAN Summit which is to be held in Ha Noi from 8 to 9 April 2010. Preparations go into high gear this evening with a working dinner of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers ahead of the arrival of the ASEAN Heads of State/Government tomorrow.



Inaugurated: ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children
Ha Noi, 7 April 2010

The ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children (ACWC) was inaugurated today in a ceremony held in Ha Noi in the lead-up towards the 16th ASEAN Summit.

The inauguration of the Commission was officiated by the Prime Minister of Viet Nam, H.E. Nguyen Tan Dung, and the Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, H.E. Mrs Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan. The inauguration comes within the framework of the 3rd Meeting of the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Council (ASCC), which was convened at the National Convention Centre in Ha Noi. It was witnessed by the ASEAN Ministers responsible for ASCC and for Social Welfare and Development, in addition to representatives from the Committee of Permanent Representatives to ASEAN (CPR), the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR), the ASEAN Senior Officials Meeting on Social Welfare and Development and the ASEAN Committee on Women. Representatives from several UN agencies such as UNICEF and UNIFEM and from relevant ministries in Viet Nam were also present.

The establishment of the ACWC is to promote and protect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and children in ASEAN. It will take into consideration the different historical, political socio-cultural, religious and economic context in the region and the balances between rights and responsibilities.

Speaking after the inauguration ceremony, the Secretary-General of ASEAN said that “the Commission is the fulfillment of the aspirations of the ASEAN Leaders. There are two groups that ASEAN likes to see have their rights and privileges promoted and protected and they are women and children.”

“If we wish to become a sharing and caring community, we have to take care of the women and children. We have to open up the space so that they feel ownership of ASEAN community-building efforts,” he added.

The establishment of the ACWC is also aimed to promote the well-being, development, empowerment and participation of women and children in the ASEAN Community building process which contribute to the realisation of the purposes of ASEAN as set out in the ASEAN Charter.

At the 14th ASEAN Summit on 28 February – 1 March 2009, the ASEAN Leaders adopted the Cha-am Hua Hin Declaration on the Roadmap for the ASEAN Community (2009-2015) which includes the ASEAN Political Security Community (APSC) Blueprint and the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC) Blueprint that reiterated the establishment of an ASEAN commission on the promotion and protection of the rights of women and children as an important measure to ensure equitable development for women and children. The Terms of Reference of the ACWC was agreed upon by the Ministers responsible for Social Welfare and Development prior to the 15th ASEAN Summit last year.

The functions of the ACWC are, among others, to promote the implementation of international instruments, ASEAN instruments and other instruments related to the rights of women and children and develop policies, programs and innovative strategies to promote and protect the rights of women and children to complement the building of the ASEAN Community. It would also promote public awareness and education of the rights of women and children in ASEAN.

Each ASEAN Member State is to appoint two representatives to the ACWC – one representative on women’s rights and one representative on children’s rights. When appointing their representatives to the ACWC, Member States are to give due consideration to competence in the field of the rights of women and children, integrity and gender equality.

On the international front, all ASEAN Member States have ratified and are parties to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).

For the speech by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, please click here.



16th ASEAN Summit to Convene This Week
ASEAN Secretariat, 5 April 2010

The 16th ASEAN Summit is scheduled to convene on 8 and 9 April 2010 in Ha Noi, Viet Nam. Preceded by a series of preparatory meetings of senior officials early this week, the Summit which would bring together the ASEAN Heads of Government/State, would also involve meetings involving the Ministers responsible for the ASEAN Economic and Socio-Cultural Community Councils as well as the Coordinating Council.

The agenda of the Summit include the implementation of the ASEAN Charter and the Roadmap for an ASEAN Community 2009–2015; ASEAN Connectivity, climate change and other regional and international issues.

The 16th ASEAN Summit will see the inauguration of the ASEAN Commission on Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children by the ASCC Minister. The ACWC is further expected to meet and get to work immediately after its inauguration.

An ASEAN Statement on Joint Response to Climate Change and an ASEAN Statement on Sustained Recovery and Development are also expected to be adopted.

The Summit is the first out of the two Summits hosted this year by Viet Nam, as the current ASEAN Chair. Following the entry into force of the ASEAN Charter, ASEAN will now convene Summits twice a year. At the next Summit in October 2010, ASEAN Leaders will meet their counterparts from the East Asia Summit countries, namely China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, India, Australia and New Zealand.

For more information on the 16th ASEAN Summit, please visit http://asean2010.vn/asean_en/news/46.