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The 42nd Singapore Lecture by His Excellency Moon Jae-in, President of The Republic of Korea, “ROK and ASEAN: Partners for Achieving Peace and Co-prosperity in East Asia”

South Korean President Moon Jae-in wants to elevate ROK-ASEAN relations to the same level as South Korea’s relations with the US, China, Japan and Russia. 

Friday, 13 July 2018 – South Korean President Moon gave a powerful and hopeful speech about the coming “Age of Asia” once South Korea and North Korea are no longer divided by ideology.


South Korean President Moon Jae-in delivering the 42nd Singapore Lecture (Credit: ISEAS=Yusof Ishak Institute)



On his first state visit to Singapore, President Moon delivered the 42nd Singapore Lecture. Entitled ROK and ASEAN: Partners for Achieving Peace and Co-prosperity in East Asia. President Moon congratulated Singapore and ASEAN for building peace and unity within diversity. He passionately argued that both Singapore and ASEAN are models for inter-Korean relations in this new period of inter-Korean cooperation underpinned by the recent inter-Korean summits and the 12 June Trump-Kim Summit held in Singapore.

President Moon explained how his government’s New Southern Policy was centred on significantly enhancing ROK-ASEAN relations across all fields, and how this would help support peace and prosperity on the Korean peninsula. President Moon singled out the importance of ASEAN for helping set the conditions for the current phase of inter-Korea relations and the promise it holds to ending the legacies of the Cold War in Asia. North Korea’s membership in the ASEAN Regional Forum over the last two decades was vital for North Korea’s communication with the international community.

Reflecting on his own history as a war refugee, President Moon impressed upon the audience how desperate South Korea is for peace and how this goal is now much closer for South Korea, East Asia and the world.


From left to right: Mr Choi Shing Kwok, Director of ISEAS; DPM Teo Chee Hean, Chairman of Lecture; South Korean President Moon Jae-in; and Professor Wang Gungwu, Chairman of the ISEAS Board of Trustees (Credit: ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute)

The 42nd Singapore Lecture, hosted by ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute, was chaired and moderated by DPM and Coordinating Minister for National Security, Mr Teo Chee Hean.

At the end of the lecture, Professor Wang Gungwu, Chairman Board of Trustees of the ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute, and Mr Choi Shing Kwok, Director, ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute; presented President Moon Jae-in with a pottery piece crafted by one of Singapore's foremost potters, Mr Chua Soo Kim, entitled “Earth, Ocean, Sunset”. The Earth, Ocean, Sunset is part of his Blue Planet series and is inspired by the colours of nature.


The memento presented to President Moon Jae-in was a pottery piece entitled “Earth, Ocean, Sunset”, crafted by one of Singapore's foremost potters, Mr Chua Soo Kim (Credit: ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute)

More than 600 people, including diplomats, government officials, business leaders, academics, students and members of the media, attended the lecture.



A large audience attended the lecture (Credit: ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute)

For Media Coverage, click here.
For the full transcript of DPM Teo Chee Hean's Opening Address, click here.
To view the official English translation of the Lecture by His Excellency Moon Jae-in, click here.
For photos of the event, click here.