What is ASEAN?
ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) was established August 8, 1967 in Bangkok, Thailand, with the “Declaration of ASEAN” (Bangkok Declaration) by the Founding countries namely Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.
Brunei Darussalam then joined the group January 7, 1984, Viet Nam, July 28, 1995, Laos and Myanmar July 23, 1997, and finally Cambodia April 30, 1999.
Goals and Objectives
As written in the Declaration of ASEAN, ASEAN’s goals and objectives are:
– To accelerate economic growth, social progress and cultural development in the region through joint initiatives in the spirit of equality and partnership in order to strengthen the foundation for a prosperous and peaceful community of nations in Asia Southeast;
– To promote peace and stability in the region by respecting justice, the law and relations between countries;
– To promote active collaboration and mutual assistance on common interest in the economic, social, cultural, technical, scientific and administrative field;
– To provide assistance in the form of training and research in education, profession, technic and administration;
– To collaborate more effectively for the greater utilization of their agriculture and industry, the expansion of their trade, including the study of problems about international commodity trade, the improvement of transportation and means of communication and raising the standard of living of the population;
– To promote Southeast Asian studies;
– To maintain a close cooperation with existing international and regional organizations with similar objectives and goals, and to explore all even closer cooperation opportunities between them.
The ASEAN members adopted the following fundamental principles, as contained in the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia of 1976:
– Mutual respect for the independence, sovereignty, equality, territorial integrity and national identity of all nations;
– The right of every country to lead its national existence free from external interference, subversion or coercion;
– Non-interference in the internal affairs of other members;
– Settlement of disputes or disputes by peaceful means;
– Effective cooperation among themselves.
The ASEAN Charter
The ASEAN Charter provides a solid foundation for the Community by providing legal status and institutional framework for the region. It also codifies the norms, rules and values; sets clear objectives for members.
The ASEAN Charter entered on December 15, 2008. A gathering of foreign ministers from member countries was held at the ASEAN Secretariat in Jakarta to mark this very historic occasion.
The region will now operate under a new legal framework and implement a number of new bodies to strengthen the community development process.
Indeed, the ASEAN Charter became a legally binding agreement between the 10 Member States of ASEAN.
For more information, visit the official website