MANILA, Apr 17 (Mabuhay) — President Benigno S. Aquino III will join his counterparts at the 22nd Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit that will be held in Brunei Darussalam from April 24 to 25, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced on Wednesday.
In a briefing in Malacanang, DFA Spokesperson Raul Hernandez said this Summit, which also marks the 46th year of ASEAN’s existence, will serve as a follow up to the 21st ASEAN Summit and Related Summits in Phnom Penh, Cambodia from November 17 to 20, 2012.
Among the topics the Philippines will continue to advocate during the Summint, Hernandez said, include maritime security and cooperation, the full implementation of the Declaration of the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, the early conclusion of a substantive and legally binding Code of Conduct and the review of the ASEAN Charter “with the objective of streamlining the work and meetings of ASEAN.”
“In the 22nd ASEAN Summit, the Philippines will continue to advocate maritime security and cooperation, to push for the full and effective implementation of the Declaration of the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, for the early conclusion of a substantive and legally binding Code of Conduct, and to review the ASEAN Charter with the objective of streamlining the work and meetings of ASEAN,” Hernandez said.
He said the Summit will begin on the evening of April 24 with a working dinner hosted by His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei Darussalam. The following day will have the Summit’s Retreat Session which Hernandez said, “will revolve around the following agenda items: the ASEAN community 2015; the ASEAN’s central role and the regional architecture; ASEAN’s future direction; and exchange of views on regional and international issues.”
Aside from the Summit, the President is expected to meet with leaders from Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia comprising the East ASEAN Growth Area for the 9th BIMP-EAGA Summit. (MNS)