Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN)

Association des nations de l'Asie du Sud-Est (ANASE)
Asociación de Naciones del Asia Sudoriental

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8 Aug 1967, Bangkok (Thailand), at a meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the five founding Member States (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore (Singapore) and Thailand), on signature of the ASEAN Declaration (Bangkok Declaration). Previous regional organizations Association of South-East Asia (ASA) and Maphilindo subsequently amalgamated with ASEAN. Brunei Darussalam adhered on 1 Jan 1984, Vietnam on 28 July 1995, Laos and Myanmar on 23 July 1997 and Cambodia on 30 Apr 1999. Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC) and Declaration of ASEAN Concord were signed by member governments at first Summit, 24 Feb 1976, Bali (Indonesia). A second Summit was held in Aug 1977, Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) and the third Summit, Dec 1987, Manila (Philippines), resulting in the Manila Declaration. 'Protocol Amending the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation' enabled countries outside the ASEAN region to accede. At 4th Summit, 27-29 Jan 1992, Singapore, Heads of Government signed the Singapore Declaration and a Framework Agreement on Enhancing ASEAN Economic Cooperation; member countries also signed the Agreement on the Common Effective Preferential Tariff (CEPT), the main tool to establish ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA). Agreement on the establishment of a permanent Secretariat (in Jakarta) concluded 24 Feb 1976. Agreement on ASEAN Preferential Trading Arrangements (PTA) signed Feb 1977. Statutes registered in '1/UNTS 22341'. Agreement on the establishment of ASEAN Secretariat registered in '1/UNTS 22342'. Current Charter signed, 20 Nov 2007, and entered into force 15 Dec 2008, following which ASEAN operates under a new legal framework with new organs.


Accelerate economic growth, social progress and cultural development in the region through joint endeavours in the spirit of equality and partnership in order to strengthen the foundation for a prosperous and peaceful community of Southeast Asian Nations; promote regional peace and stability through abiding respect for justice and the rule of law in the relationship among countries of the region and adherence to the principles of the United Nations Charter; promote active collaboration and mutual assistance on matters of common interest in economic, social, cultural, technical, scientific and administrative fields; provide assistance to each other in the form of training and research facilities in educational, professional, technical and administrative spheres; collaborate more effectively for the greater utilization of agriculture and industries, expansion of trade, including the study of problems of international commodity trade, improvement of transportation and communications facilities and raising of living standards; promote Southeast Asian studies; maintain close and beneficial cooperation with existing international and regional organizations with similar aims and purposes and explore all avenues for even closer cooperation.

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'ASEAN Vision 2020' adopted 1997. At 9th Summit, 2003, resolved to set up ASEAN Community. Commitment affirmed at 12th ASEAN Summit, 2007, when 'Cebu Declaration of the Establishment of an ASEAN Community by 2015' was signed. ASEAN Community is comprised of 3 pillars, each with its own Blueprint: ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC); ASEAN Economic Community (AEC); ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC).

At 10th Summit, the 'Vientiane Action Programme (VAP)' was also adopted, a 6-year plan to realize the end goals of the ASEAN Vision 2020 and the Declaration of ASEAN Concord II. The VAP focuses on deepening regional integration and narrowing the development gap within ASEAN, particularly the least developed Member Countries. ASEAN Development Fund (ADF) was established to support the implementation of the VAP and future action programmes.

I: 'ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC)'

Blueprint adopted at 14th ASEAN Summit, 1 Mar 2009, Cha-Am (Thailand). Aims to ensure that countries in the region live at peace with one another and with the world in a just, democratic and harmonious environment. Key characteristics: A Rules-based Community of shared values and norms; A Cohesive, Peace, Stable and Resilient Region with shared responsibility for comprehensive security; A Dynamic and Outward-looking Region in an increasingly integrated and interdependent world. Actions include: ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR); upholding existing political instruments such as Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC), Treaty on the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-free Zone (Treaty on SEANWFZ), Declaration on Zone of Peace, Freedom and Neutrality (ZOPFAN) and Declaration on the Conduct of Parties (DOC) in the South China Sea; ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF).

II: 'ASEAN Economic Community (AEC)'

Blueprint adopted at 13th ASEAN Summit, 20 Nov 2007, Vientiane (Laos). Aims for economic integration, bases on a convergence of interests of ASEAN Member Countries to deepen and broaden economic integration through existing and new initiatives with clear timelines. Key elements (4): Single Market and Production Base; Competitive Economic Region; Equitable Economic Development; Integration into the Global Economy. Treaties and actions include: ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) and its Agreement on the Common Effective Preferential Tariff (CEPT); ASEAN Investment Area (AIA); ASEAN Agreement on Customs; ASEAN Framework Agreement on Intellectual Property Cooperation; ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services (AFAS); ASEAN Framework Agreement on the Facilitation of Goods in Transit; ASEAN Framework Agreement on Multimodal Transport; ASEAN Framework Agreement on the Facilitation of Inter-state Transport; ASEAN Single Aviation Market; ASEAN Power Grid - overlooked by Forum of Heads of ASEAN Power Utilities/Authorities (HAPUA), and Trans-ASEAN Gas Pipeline (TAGP); E-ASEAN Framework Agreement.

III: 'ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASSC)'

Blueprint adopted at 14th ASEAN Summit, 1 Mar 2009, Cha-Am (Thailand). Aims to contribute to realizing an ASEAN Community that is people-centred and socially responsible so as to achieve enduring solidarity and unity, by forging a common identity and building a caring and sharing society inclusive and harmonious where well-being, livelihood and welfare are enhanced. Key characteristics: Human Development; Social Welfare and Protection; Social Justice and Rights; Ensuring Environmental Sustainability; Building the ASEAN Identity; Narrowing the Development Gap. Actions and Treaties include: ASEAN Occupational Safety and Health Network (ASEAN-OSHNET); ASEAN Agreement on Transboundary Haze Pollution; ASEAN Agreement on the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources.


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English, Indonesian, Malay, Khmer, Tamil, Myanmar, Lao, Filipino, Thai, Vietnamese.


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Relations with Inter-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 68 inter-governmental organizations.
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Relations with Non-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 117 non-governmental organizations.
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Members in 10 countries
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Type I Classification

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Type II Classification

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Subjects *

  • Government
    • Intergovernmental Communities

UN Sustainable Development Goals **



Last News Received

2. Aug 2018
* Subject classification is derived from the organization names and aims.
** UN SDGs are linked to the subject classification.

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