PASAY CITY, 7 September 2017 – ASEAN Economic Ministers (AEM) gather today in Pasay City, Philippines, for the 49th AEM Meeting and Related Meetings, which will be held from 7 to 11 September. The ministers paid a courtesy call on Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte yesterday. Mr. Ramon Lopez, the Philippines’ Secretary of Trade and Industry will chair the series of meetings.

Under the overall theme of “Partnering for Change, Engaging the World,” the Philippines, as ASEAN Chair for 2017, has adopted the theme of “Inclusive, Innovation-led Growth” for the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The 49th AEM Meeting will deliberate, among others, on ASEAN economic performance, the priority economic deliverables under the Philippines’ ASEAN Chairmanship, implementation of the AEC, and ASEAN external economic relations.

The 49th AEM Meeting will be held back to back with the AEM-31st ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) Council Meeting and the AEM-20th ASEAN Investment Area Council Meeting.

Following the 49th AEM Meeting, the ASEAN ministers will meet with their counterparts from Dialogue Partner countries namely Australia and New Zealand (Closer Economic Relations), Canada, China, Hong Kong-China, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, Russia and the United States, as well as with private sector representatives from the ASEAN Business Advisory Council and other regional business councils.

Meanwhile, the 5th East Asia Economic Ministers’ Meeting will be held on 9 September; the 20th ASEAN Plus Three Consultations and the 5th Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Ministerial Meeting are scheduled on 10 September; while the 9th Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Viet Nam (CLMV) Economic Ministers’ Meeting will be held on 11 September.