President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. will assert the significance of ASEAN centrality amid the geopolitical issues in the region, according to an official of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).
Marcos is scheduled to participate in the 42nd ASEAN Summit, which will be held in Indonesia next month.
"The President is expected to assert the importance of demonstrating ASEAN’s centrality in the region amidst geopolitical rivalries and advancing the Philippines’ priorities in ASEAN through regional and multilateral cooperation," said ASEAN Affairs Assistant Secretary Angelito Nayan.
Nayan said this includes discussions on food security, education, and disaster resiliency, among others, with other ASEAN leaders.
The Department of Foreign Affairs said this year’s Summit has the theme: “ASEAN Matters: Epicentrum of Growth."
According to DFA spokesperson Teresita Daza, the ASEAN Summit "provides a platform for ASEAN leaders to discuss and exchange views on key regional issues and build consensus on matters of mutual interest and provide policy directions on ASEAN community-building efforts."
She said the opening ceremony would be held on May 10, which will be followed by a plenary session as well as a series of interfaces among ASEAN leaders, representatives, and delegates of relevant ASEAN bodies.
Daza also said the ASEAN leaders are expected to adopt a roadmap on Timor Leste’s full membership in ASEAN during the Summit.
Meanwhile, Daza said Marcos would also participate in the 15th Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asian Growth Area or BIMP-EAGA Summit, which will convene on May 11.
"The BIMP-EAGA Summit will be chaired by Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim of Malaysia, and here, during this meeting, the President will discuss developments and the BIMP-EAGA Vision 2025 towards promoting economic development, strengthening connectivity and the sustainable management of natural resources in the sub-region," she said.
"Expected after the meeting are some 16 outcome documents which are being targeted to be issued, adopted or noted during the meeting," she added. —VAL, GMA Integrated News