GUWAHATI, 3 February 2019 – ASEAN and Indian youth representatives met at the 2nd ASEAN-India Youth Summit to strengthen connectivity and continue fostering mutual understanding in Guwahati, Assam, India.

Held under the theme “Connectivity is the Pathway to Shared Prosperity,” the summit provided a platform for around 200 youths from ASEAN and India to discuss cultural and historical linkages, skills development for youth, and North East as India’s Gateway to ASEAN.

“Fostering youth connectivity and the values of shared prosperity among youth can be nurtured by encouraging their participation in meaningful community building activities across the ASEAN and India region,” said Deputy Secretary-General for ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Kung Phoak at the inaugural session.

In light of the ASEAN-India Tourism Cooperation Year 2019, the inaugural session also highlighted well-known cultural linkages between ASEAN Member States and India, and the strategic role of tourism in binding people, including the youth, together. “This world should be built by the dreams of the young people,” said Tourism Minister of India K.J. Alphons.

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said that there was a need for the youth to understand the purpose of connectivity. He encouraged all attending Indian youth delegates to establish communication with fellow youth from ASEAN Member States to move forward the existing connectivity between ASEAN and India. For their contribution to the strengthening of ASEAN-India relations, one youth from each ASEAN Member State will be presented with the ASEAN-India Youth Awards as well.

The ASEAN-India Youth Summit was established to facilitate socio-cultural exchanges between countries in the region, and to further strengthen the values of tolerance, pluralism and diversity. The Summit is organised by the India Foundation and the Indian Ministry of External Affairs with funding from the ASEAN-India Fund. The summit is a continuation of the 1st ASEAN India Youth Summit held in 2017 in Bhopal, India to commemorate 25 Years of ASEAN-India Relations.