The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission Federica Mogherini together with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Singapore Vivian Balakrishnan co-chaired the Ministerial Meeting between EU foreign ministers and their counterparts from the 10 Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in Brussels and the ASEAN Secretary General.
"We agreed in principle to upgrade our relation to a strategic partnership," High Representative Federica Mogherini announced. "It is a recognition of the strategic partnership we already have in many fields." Mogherini explained that "it is an important signal showing that the two most advanced and most successful integration processes in the world stand firmly behind multilateralism and a rule-based global order."
Both sides discussed key global challenges and issues affecting Europe and Southeast Asia. The HR/VP also stressed the importance and potential benefits for Europe and Asia of increased cooperation in the fields of trade and investment, security and climate action.
They also debated how to strengthen EU-ASEAN connectivity, including by encouraging the conclusion of a region-to-region Comprehensive Air Transport Agreement. They also welcomed the establishment of a joint working group between the EU and relevant ASEAN Member States to address issues relating to palm oil.