Biden to host ASEAN summit for Southeast Asian leaders

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) – US President Joe Biden will host a Special Summit for leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in Washington next month, the Washington Examiner reports.

ASEAN is a political and economic union of 10 Southeast Asian member states, whose key objectives include the acceleration of economic growth and the promotion of regional peace and stability. The member states are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, and the Philippines.

Announcing the Washington summit on Saturday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement that the Biden administration recognizes ASEAN’s “central role in delivering sustainable solutions to the region’s most pressing challenges.”

Accordingly, Psaki said: “It is a top priority for the Biden-Harris Administration to serve as a strong, reliable partner in Southeast Asia. Our shared aspirations for the region will continue to underpin our common commitment to advance an Indo-Pacific that is free and open, secure, connected, and resilient.”

“[The summit] will build on President Biden’s participation in the October 2021 US-Asean Summit, where the President announced US$102 million (S$138.5 million) in new initiatives to expand our engagement with Asean on Covid-19 recovery and health security, fighting the climate crisis, stimulating broad-based economic growth, promoting gender equality, and deepening people-to-people ties,” Psaki added.

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