The ASEAN Secretariat held its latest update and exchange of ideas with the Indonesian Parliament.

Indonesia is the current chair of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA).

The country’s Inter-Parliamentary Cooperation Agency (Badan Kerjasama Antar Parlemen or BKSAP) of the Indonesian House of Representatives hosted a seminar with the theme “AIPA: Enhancing the ASEAN Transformation into a Solid Community”. The seminar was held at Operation Room, Nusantara Building, at the Indonesian House of Representatives Headquarters.

In his opening remarks, Dr. Marzuki Alie, Head of Indonesian House of Representatives, and President of AIPA (2011 – 2012) shared AIPA’s vision under his presidency.

AIPA seeks to enhance its contribution in building an ASEAN Community 2015; foster a visionary, intensive, cooperative, and effective engagement between AIPA and ASEAN; as well as strengthen AIPA’s relationship with the peoples of ASEAN.

The Seminar was moderated by Dr. KH. Surahman Hidayat, MA, Head of BKSAP; and presented three speakers who shared their expertise on the theme.

Speaking on ASEAN’s efforts “Towards an ASEAN Community 2015,” ASEAN Deputy Secretary-General, Mr. Bagas Hapsoro, explained about ASEAN’s modalities and instruments towards an ASEAN Community 2015. He also briefed his audience on current challenges confronting the region, challenges posed for each of the three pillars of the ASEAN Community, and how these challenges can be addressed. DSG Bagas highlighted the active role of all ASEAN stakeholders – particularly AIPA as parliamentarians and partners of the government – in ensuring the successful realisation of the aims and purposes of the ASEAN Charter, and the ASEAN Community 2015 as a people centred community.

Mr. Foster Gultom, Secretary, Directorate General ASEAN Cooperation of Ministry of Foreign Affairs Indonesia, outlined policies which have been implemented by the Indonesian Government efforts towards achieving the ASEAN Community 2015.

Professor Hikmahanto Juwana from University of Indonesia, gave a critical academic perspective on how the ASEAN Community could be implemented to reach the grass roots in terms of policy and implementation. He emphasised on the importance of the readiness of human resources – Indonesia in particular – in order to be competitive in facing the ASEAN Community 2015.

The Seminar attracted participants from Members of Indonesian Parliament, Ambassadors to the Republic of Indonesia and to ASEAN, as well as lecturers and students, namely from University of Indonesia, Gadjah Mada University, Prof. Dr. Moestopo University, and Institute of Social and Political Sciences.