The European Union and the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) are upgrading their relationship to a Strategic Partnership. This decision was taken by EU and ASEAN countries’ Foreign Ministers at the EU-ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on 21 January 2019.
EU-ASEAN (consisting of Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar (Burma), Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam) relations date back to 1977 when official “Dialogue Relations” began.
At the recent meeting, EU and ASEAN foreign ministers discussed cooperation on regional and international issues, including global challenges such as climate change and strengthening the rule-based multilateral system.
Foreign ministers addressed priority areas for 2019 such as enhanced security cooperation, including counterterrorism, transnational crime, maritime security and cybersecurity.
They also discussed how to strengthen EU-ASEAN cooperation on connectivity. Foreign ministers also exchanged views on recent developments in the EU and in the ASEAN countries.