Summit Room, Busan Exhibition and Convention Center (BEXCO), Busan, South Korea
November 26, 2019

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, accompanied by some of his Cabinet Secretaries and government officials, convened with Republic of Korea (ROK) President Moon Jae-in and other Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Leaders for the first session of the 2019 ASEAN-ROK Commemorative Summit at the Busan Exhibition and Convention Center (BEXCO) in Busan, South Korea.

With the theme, ‘ASEAN-ROK 30&30,’ the leaders discussed the achievements of the ASEAN–ROK dialogue partnership in the last 30 years and the further plans for future cooperation.

In his opening remarks, South Korean President Moon said that ASEAN and ROK have been forging a relationship of mutual prosperity while preparing for the Asia-Pacific era.

“I have very high regard for the fact that our cooperation has expanded beyond the economy and trade into all fronts, including politics, security, society and culture. I believe what enabled us to overcome the East Asian foreign exchange crisis and the global financial crisis was the strength of the ties and trust we have built together,” he said.

The South Korean leader deemed ASEAN as an invaluable partner for Korea, and spelled out that his New Southern Policy seeks to create a ‘people-centered community of peace and prosperity’ in cooperation with the regional bloc.

“Now, 30 years after the establishment of relations between ASEAN and Korea, trade, investment and people-to-people exchanges have significantly increased: 20 times, 70 times and 40 times, respectively,” he added.

Furthermore, President Moon tackled the challenges that the world is facing such as protectionism, transnational crime and the Fourth Industrial Revolution. He assured that their cooperation and solidarity can help them prevail over these challenges.

“Cooperation and solidarity must be further strengthened. Over the coming 30 years, we must build a more solid relationship in order to become a mutually beneficial community that realizes Partnership for Peace, Prosperity for People,’ the South Korean President underscored.

He expressed his aspiration for the 21st century to be the era of Asia, and assured that the ‘Asian Spirit’ that embraces all is the wisdom that Asia imparts to the entire world.

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