President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday debuted as host of the Association of Southeast Asian Nation (Asean) Summit in Manila.
Duterte, together with his partner Cielito Avanceña, welcomed fellow Asean leaders as they gathered at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City.
Asean leaders at the Summit were Myanmar state counselor Aung San Suu Kyi, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, President Tran Dai Quang of Vietnam, Laos Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, Brunei’s Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, Cambodia’s Prime Minister Hun Sen, Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo, and Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak.
Duterte presided over the Asean Summit Plenary session at the PICC, which was followed by the Leaders’ Retreat at the Coconut Palace.
The leaders are expected to discuss the implementation of the Asean Community Vision 2025, external relations and future directions.
Regional and international issues are also expected to be discussed as the leaders sign the Asean declaration on the roles of the civil service.
The leaders will also meet with representatives of the Asean Inter-Parliamentary Assembly and Asea youth.
The 10-member regional bloc was established in Bangkok, Thailand on August 8, 1967. Its five founding members — Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand — signed the Asean declaration. Catherine Valente