The recently-concluded 27th ASEAN Summit witnessed the signing of the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on the establishment of the ASEAN Community. In addition to agreeing to declare the establishment of the ASEAN Community on 31 December 2015, the member states also affirmed their commitment to implement the ASEAN 2025 Agenda. The member states also saw Malaysia passing on the ASEAN chairmanship baton to Lao PDR at the summit. While Laos is gearing up to welcome an exciting year of summits and high level meetings, there are doubts on whether the momentum towards building a more cohesive and integrated ASEAN, accumulated over the past decades, will continue in this next phase of community building. Questions have arisen, among others, as to ASEAN’s continued ability to manage internal conflicts as well as the regional balance of power, the feasibility of the ASEAN Economic Community, and the ever-elusive common ASEAN identity.
What will be Lao PDR’s priorities and goals of community building? What can ASEAN member states expect from its chairmanship? What will Lao PDR’s contribution be in promoting peace, stability and development in the region? This lecture will provide a preview of Lao PDR’s goals and priorities for ASEAN in 2016 under its chairmanship.
Ambassador Yong Chanthalangsy is the Director-General of the Institute of Foreign Affairs under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lao PDR and the Chair of the ASEAN Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ASEAN-ISIS) network. He was also formerly Lao Permanent Representative to the United Nations.
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