JAKARTA, 12 May 2017 President of Chile Michelle Bachelet reiterated Chile’s commitment to strengthen relations with ASEAN during her official visit to the ASEAN Secretariat today where she met with Secretary-General of ASEAN Le Luong Minh.

In welcoming President Bachelet, Secretary-General Minh congratulated Chile on its accession to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia in September last year and underlined the importance of TAC as a strong foundation for closer cooperation and confidence building.

The importance of furthering ASEAN-Chile economic cooperation was highlighted at the Meeting where President Bachelet underlined the need to promote bilateral and multilateral trade and investment, encouraged the development of global value chain and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises as well as advancing e-commerce among others. Both sides also underscored the importance of enhancing connectivity and tourism between the two regions. In this regard, Chile expressed interest in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, which is an important framework ASEAN and its Free Trade Agreement partners are negotiating to boost global economic growth and deepen regional economic integration.

Secretary-General Minh appreciated Chile’s active role in the Pacific Alliance as its current Pro-tempore President and welcomed the successful convening of the 3rd ASEAN-Pacific Alliance Ministerial Meeting in September last year and the adoption of the ASEAN-Pacific Alliance Framework for Cooperation at the Meeting.

Both sides noted the importance of implementing the Framework for Cooperation through concrete activities in the areas of economics, education and people-to-people contacts, science, technology and innovation, and sustainable development.

President Bachelet is the first Chilean Leader to visit the ASEAN Secretariat. She was also accompanied by Chile’s Foreign Minister Heraldo Munoz.