JAKARTA, 29 November 2019 — Youth leaders, academics, and change makers of ASEAN and Australia gathered at the Australian Embassy in Jakarta to attend the ASEAN-Australia Young Leaders Forum.

The forum was organised as part of the Australia Now! ASEAN programme, with the support of the Australian Mission to ASEAN and the ASEAN-Australia Strategic Youth Partnership.

Forty outstanding young leaders, out of the 900 applicants, were selected from across ASEAN Member States and Australia, to join the forum. The forum targeted to deepen the youths’ knowledge and understanding on ASEAN-Australia relations, develop intercultural understanding, and build networks.

In his keynote address, ASEAN Secretary-General Dato Lim Jock Hoi highlighted the long-standing dialogue relations between the two regions, particularly Australia’s steadfast support in education and people-to-people exchange, as well as participation in the negotiation for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.

“Today’s youth are more vibrant, more innovative and even bolder than ever. The youth can actually participate in commercial activities to take advantage of the opportunities made available by the regional trade agreement,” said Secretary-General Dato Lim Jock Hoi.

Jane Duke, Australian Ambassador to ASEAN, called the forum an opportunity to promote understanding and networks among the ASEAN and Australian youth, as neighbours in the Indo-Pacific region.

The 4-day youth-led programme was structured around speaker panels, cultural activities and skills development workshops, including a visit to the ASEAN Secretariat.

Panelists at the forum included  Ambassador Phasporn Sangasubana, Permanent Representative of Thailand to ASEAN, Jose Tavares, Director-General of ASEAN Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Indonesia, and Adelina Kamal, Executive Director of the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on Disaster Management AHA Centre.

Representatives from the Australian National University, University of Western Australia, University of Indonesia, AsiaLink, Tokopedia, and Grab were also in attendance.

The keynote speech of Secretary-General Lim is available here.