ASEM works through meetings and activities organised at different levels.
The ASEM Summit is a meeting between the 51 Heads of State or Government, the President of the European Council, the President of the European Commission, and the Secretary-General of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The summits are held every second year, alternating between Asia and Europe.
Ministerial Meetings are organised in-between the ASEM Summits, gathering ministers of foreign affairs, finance, economics, labour and employment, culture, education, transport and environment. Occasionally other ministerial conferences are held on specific issues and areas that are not covered by the main ministerial meetings.
Senior Officials' Meetings (SOM) bring together high-level civil servants from the Foreign Ministries of all ASEM partners for the overall coordination of the ASEM process. Sectoral SOMs are also held in preparation of the various Ministerial meetings.
Activities and initiatives are organised by ASEM partners on a wide range of issues of mutual interest. A full overview of all ASEM meetings can be found at the ASEM InfoBoard: http://www.aseminfoboard.org/
At the 12th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Summit, which took place on 18 and 19 October 2018 in Brussels, leaders addressed the topics of connectivity and support for multilateralism under the heading "Europe and Asia: global partners for global challenges".
The next Summit will be held in Cambodia on the 25-26 November 2021. https://www.aseminfoboard.org/events/13th-asem-summit-asem13
ASEM has no secretariat. Foreign ministers and their senior officials have an overall coordinating role within the ASEM process. They are assisted in this by an informal group of coordinators: two from the Asian side (currently Singapore representing the ASEAN and Russia the non-ASEAN (NESA) countries) and two from the European side (the European External Action Service (EEAS) as the permanent coordinator and the rotating EU Presidency).
The ASEM Family
The Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) is an international non-profit organisation, based in Singapore, with the aim to promote cultural ties and foster people-to-people contacts between both civil society and business leaders from the two regions.
The Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership (ASEP) promotes cooperation between parliaments in Europe and Asia and offers parliamentarians an opportunity to influence the ASEM process.
The Asia-Europe Peoples’ Forum (AEPF) is the ‘grass roots’ level of ASEM and serves as an interregional network of civil society and societal movements across Asia and Europe.
The Asia-Europe Business Forum (AEBF) aims to enhance business-to-business dialogue
and cooperation between the two regions and to provide opportunity for interaction between business and political leaders.
The Asia-Europe Labour Forum (AELF) consists of trade union centres that engage the ASEM process to make social justice and development central in the agenda of ASEM Ministers and Heads of State.
The ASEM Cultural Festival takes place each year in the sidelines of the Summits or the Foreign Ministers meetings to strengthen inter-cultural dialogue among ASEM partners.