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ASEAN Leaders Gather in Labuan Bajo for 42nd Summit

The 42nd ASEAN Summit and Related Meetings kicked off today in Labuan Bajo, a tropical resort town in East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia. The summit is hosted by Indonesia, which holds the ASEAN Chairmanship for 2023 under the theme “ASEAN Matters: Epicentrum of Growth”.

The summit brings together the leaders of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and their dialogue partners, including China, Japan, South Korea, India, Australia, New Zealand, and the United States. The summit will also feature interface sessions with representatives of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly, ASEAN Youth, ASEAN Business Advisory Council, and High-Level Task Force on ASEAN Community’s Post-2025 Vision.

The summit agenda covers various issues of regional and global importance, such as the ongoing ASEAN community-building efforts and the post-2025 vision, ASEAN’s relations with external partners, and regional and international developments, including the implementation of the Five-Point Consensus on Myanmar.

The summit will also witness the signing of several agreements and declarations, such as the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework and its Implementation Plan, the ASEAN Digital Masterplan 2025, the ASEAN Declaration on Human Capital Development for a Changing World of Work, and the ASEAN Declaration on Strengthening Cooperation in Combating Transnational Crime.

At the sidelines of the summit, several sub-regional meetings will take place, such as the 15th Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle Summit (IMT-GT Summit) and the 15th Brunei Darussalam–Indonesia– Malaysia–Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) Summit.

The summit is expected to conclude tomorrow with a joint statement by the ASEAN leaders and a press conference by Indonesian President Joko Widodo as the ASEAN Chair.

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