FORMER president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo cited the increased prosperity in Southeast Asia but said that while it would continue to grow in the next 50 years, it should not ignore issues that would have an impact on the lives of people in the region, particularly global warming and terrorism.
“Asean which has now expanded from 5 to 10 countries, including Cambodia, has kept the peace, expanded our economies and became closer together through trade, diplomacy and greater connectivity. We are proud of what Asean has achieved in the past 50 years in terms of peace, security and economic growth,” said Arroyo in a speech at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) Business and Investments Summit on Tuesday, the second day of the 31st Asean Summit and Related Meetings.
“We see a more peaceful world overall, but at the same time we see more nations with nuclear capability and yes, there will still be attempts of terrorism. We see a clearer environment, at the same time however, global warming will continue to affect government policies, economic model and our lives themselves,” said Arroyo who is now a member of the House of Representatives.
The former president said that since the threat of terrorism would continue, Asean countries should “look after each other and fight terrorism.”
“The challenge for Asean is to look after each other in terms of security by cooperating to counter suppress terrorism,” she said.