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ASEAN Summit: Preparations In Full Swing In Manila

12 November 2017

The 31st Summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and related meetings will be held on Monday in Manila of the Philippines. The Philippines, the rotating chair of ASEAN for 2017, has set this year's theme as "Partnering for Change, Engaging the World".

State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi led the Myanmar delegation, and has arrived in Manila on Saturday. In addition to leaders of the 10 ASEAN member countries, leaders of about 20 countries and international organizations, including China, the United States, Russian, the European Union and the United Nations, will gather in Manila for the summit.

A series of preparatory meetings have been held from Friday to Sunday, setting agenda for the summit. The Philippine Foreign Affairs spokesman told the press on Friday that the leaders will discuss about the region's issues of common concerns, including trade and investment facilitation, economic innovative growth, cracking down on cyber crimes, anti-terrorism, humanitarian aid and disaster-relief, as well as connectivity. The first leaders’ meeting on Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) will be held during the summit.

Leaders of 16 member states will review the progress the negotiation had made, hear evaluation reports by trade ministers from the participating states, in order to give guidelines for further negotiation. In addition, 20th ASEAN-China Summit and 20th ASEAN Plus Three (APT) Summit will also be held, as an effort to explore development direction of future cooperation between ASEAN and other countries under the current cooperation mechanism.

The summit has attracted media from across the world, with more than 2,700 journalists registered for the summit. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of ASEAN, which is focused on economic integration and growth, and consensus-building.