World Leaders To Converge In KL For ASEAN Meetings

17 November 2015
(Click Malaysian Digest for original post)

KUALA LUMPUR - World leaders, including United States President Barack Obama are scheduled to join Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak as Malaysia hosts the 27th ASEAN Summit and Related Summits this week.

There is much to talk about as regional leaders and their counterparts from ASEAN dialogue partners, meet in the Malaysian capital from Nov 18 to 22.

But topping the agenda will be the birth of the ASEAN Community on Dec 31, 2015, a milestone event in the history of the 48-year-old organisation that will be marked in Kuala Lumpur with the signing of a declaration by the region's leaders.

They are also expected to issue another document charting the way forward for ASEAN Community in the next 10 years, until 2025. The 10-nation bloc comprises Brunei Darusalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Southeast Asian leaders will also hold summits with their dialogue partners.

ASEAN's dialogue partners are China, Japan, South Korea, India, Russia, Australia, New Zealand, the United States, as well as the United Nations.

The series of high-profile meetings in the Malaysian capital, including the 10th East Asia Summit, will take place as the world community grapples with the aftermath of Friday's deadly attacks in Paris which left more than 100 people killed, drawing international condemnation.

In this regard, leaders huddled in the colossal halls of the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, the venue of the ASEAN and ASEAN-related meetings, are likely to train their sights on further efforts to combat terrorism and extremism.

Also likely to be on the menu are matters pertaining to the contentious South China Sea issue, irregular movement of persons and the seasonal haze problem affecting the region.

A host of other events are being organised on the sidelines of the main ASEAN meetings, including the ASEAN Civil Service Innovation Conference, ASEAN Young Leader's Summit and ASEAN Business and Investment Summit 2015.

The spouse programme also features a number of interesting events, such as the session on 'Voices of ASEAN Women: Exploring Business Opportunities for Rural Women'.

ASEAN's diverse culinary and cultural offerings will also be highlighted during the Kuala Lumpur gathering.