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Reception held to mark 50th Anniversary of ASEAN formation
September 28, 2017, 5:50 pm

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), a reception was hosted by the nine ambassadors in Kuwait of ASEAN member countries on 27 September at the Jumeirah Messilah Beach Hotel.

The ambassadors hosting the event were: the 2017 Chairman of the ASEAN Committee in Kuwait (ACK), Ambassador of Philippines H.E. Renato P. O. Villa; Ambassador of Brunei Darussalam H.E. P.A.A. Aliuddin; Ambassador of Kingdom of Cambodia H.E. Tan Bunpa; Ambassador of Indonesia H.E. Tatang Budie Utama Razak, Ambassador of Lao People's Democratic Republic H.E. Phouangkeo Langsy; Ambassador of Malaysia H.E. Dato Ahmad Rozian Abd. Ghani; Ambassador of Myanmar H.E. Aye Khaing; Ambassador of the Kingdom of Thailand H.E. Dusit Manapan and the Ambassador of Vietnam H.E. Nguyen Hong Thao.

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Khaled Al-Jarallah, who was the chief guest on the occasion, lauded the deep-rooted relations between the ASEAN and GCC states, and called for a wider economic and technological partnership between the two blocs. “The State of Kuwait seizes this opportunity to call for deeper cooperation and stronger bonds between Asian and Gulf Cooperation Council nations," said the minister.

He pointed out that the ASEAN foundation was instrumental in boosting economic integration among its member states. He noted that the pan-ASEAN trade exchange has climbed to 35 percent of their total trade with the external world, and recalled Kuwait's endeavors to strengthen cooperation with the ASEAN organization and its member countries.

Elaborating on the mutually beneficial opportunities shared by the two blocs, Minister Al-Jarallah mentioned the memorandum of understanding signed between the ASEAN and the GCC in Manama in June 2009 helped give impetus to mutual cooperation in a variety of domains including trade, investment, food security, tourism and energy.

He noted that ASEAN member states are among the largest trade partners to the GCC states, and that the ASEAN-GCC trade exchange in the past decade jumped to nearly US$127 billion. He added that 80 percent of the petroleum exports from GCC states go to ASEAN states and 50 percent of ASEAN electronic exports are to GCC states. In addition, the GCC states are embarking on several partnerships in the petroleum sector with several ASEAN states to enhance economic cooperation between the two blocs, he added.

Minister Al-Jarallah also highlighted that Kuwait had hosted the First Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) Summit in Kuwait aimed at enhancing cooperation among Asian nations, and is also the permanent headquarters for the ACD Secretariat.

The event was attended by a large gathering of members of the diplomatic corps, special invitees and media personnel.

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