Manila [Philippines], August 6 (ANI): Addressing Foreign ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Minister of State for External Affairs V. K. Singh said that ASEAN occupies a central place in the security architecture of the Asia-Pacific region and the ability to harmonize larger interests of the world beyond it.
Singh made the opening remarks at the 15th ASEAN-India Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Manila where Foreign ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and their counterparts from other Asian and Pacific nations will discuss security issues of the Asia Pacific region.
“From the Indian perspective, ASEAN occupies a central place in the security architecture of the Asia-Pacific region. It is our view that precisely because ASEAN represents the cultural, commercial and physical cross-roads of the region, it has a unique ability to reflect and harmonize larger interests of the world beyond it,” Singh said.
“During these 50 years, ASEAN had put behind it many of the post-decolonization debates of this region. It navigated the Cold War very adeptly to usher in an era of high economic growth that served as a model to others. Weathering the impact of the Asian financial crisis in 1997, it then went on to expand its footprint through the East Asia Summit process,” Singh further said.
“It is my privilege to be participating in this Special ASEAN India Foreign Ministers Meeting. I compliment Philippines for the excellent arrangements and hospitality extended to me and my delegation. I look forward to attending the Grand ceremony on 8th August to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the Bangkok Declaration which gave rise to ASEAN,” he added.
Elaborating about the India-Philippines bilateral ties, Singh said, “On our 25th anniversary, the flower of our relationship, which spans thirty dialogue mechanisms including an annual summit and seven ministerial dialogues, is in full blossom, with the strategic, political, economic and cultural petals aglow.”
Foreign ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and their counterparts from other Asian and Pacific nations will meet in the Philippines from Sunday to Tuesday to tackle regional issues. (ANI)