Asean envoys give thumbs-up to Malaysia’s chairmanship

KUALA LUMPUR, (PNA/Bernama) — Asean envoys in Malaysia marked the 47th anniversary of the organization on Friday, with glowing recognition of the country’s ability when it assumes the chairmanship next year.

Malaysia’s experience and stature as a founding member would augur well for the organization which is set to herald the creation of an Asean Community by the end of 2015, they said in responses to Bernama in conjunction with Asean Day.

“We look forward to Malaysia’s wise leadership in the launch of the Asean Community next year and the articulation of a post-2015 Asean vision,” said Philippine Ambassador to Malaysia Eduardo Malaya.

Cambodian Ambassador to Malaysia Princess Norodom Arunrasmy said Malaysia, being a founding member of Asean, had the experience in steering the organization to carry out its action plans and maintaining the momentum.

“We, in Asean are working towards the establishment of the Asean Community by the end of 2015. Many things to do, but the Asean member countries are committed to push ahead,” she said.

Laotian Ambassador to Malaysia Khamphan Anlavan said he strongly believed Malaysia would deliver an excellent chairmanship in 2015 and serve as a highly significant mover for the Asean Community at the end of the year.

“I believe Malaysia is able to play a remarkably active role as a chair of Asean in making it successful and addressing the challenges faced, with and rich of experiences gained throughout Asean establishment,” he said.

Vietnam Ambassador to Malaysia Prof Dr Nguyen Hong Thao said both opportunities and challenges await Asean and Malaysia when it chaired the organisation in 2015.

“We are fully confident that Malaysia, as one of the founders and experienced members of Asean, with its wisdom and time-tested capacity, will be able to lead Asean to successfully turn into a community, as well as chart the right directions for Asean to move forward in the post-2015 period.

On his hopes for Asean, Malaya said true integration could be achieved only with awareness and appreciation for Asean among the peoples in the region, especially the youth.

“My vision for Asean is a region which is economically prosperous and politically stable, and more importantly, whose peoples have transcended their respective nationalities and can proudly proclaim, ‘I am Asean’,” he said.

Princess Arunrasmy said Asean had played a very important role for peace in Cambodia in the 80’s and 90’s.

“Asean has brought peace and prosperity to Southeast Asia and it is important to maintain this continued progress and stability,” she said of her Asean hope.

Khamphan hoped Asean would grow as a more energetic community with all members continuing to live in harmony as one community and embracing each other’s diversity in culture, languages and religions.

“I hope Asean will continue to give priority and cooperate on narrowing the development gap within Asean and address the challenges we may face and make all our visions achievable,” he said.

Thao said the driving forces propelling Asean lay within their own strengths and should be enhanced through maximising the opportunities.

“Asean has been our family throughout the last 47 years and will be our shared destiny for the next 50 years and more,” he added.