BACOLOD CITY–Every Filipino, as a citizen of Southeast Asia, can benefit from the six thematic priorities for ASEAN 2017 identified by the Duterte administration as the Philippines assumes the chairmanship this year.
This was underscored by Assistant Secretary Kissinger Reyes of the Presidential Communications Operations Office during the media briefing here Tuesday, ahead of the 15th Meeting of the ASEAN Senior Officials/Ministers Responsible for Information (SOMRI) on March 22 to 23 at the SMX Convention Center Bacolod.
The six thematic priorities for ASEAN 2017 under the theme “Partnering for Change, Engaging the World” are the following:
-A people-oriented, people-centered ASEAN
-Peace and stability in the region
-Maritime security and cooperation
-Inclusive, innovation-led growth
-ASEAN: A model of regionalism, a global player
These priorities were carefully selected to ensure that critical regional and international issues would be addressed, and that the Community’s efforts would enable positive change in all three ASEAN pillars, which include political security, economic, and socio-cultural.
Reyes said the focus of “a people-oriented, people-centered ASEAN” is the welfare of every ASEAN citizen while for “peace and stability in the region,” the Philippines, as the chair of ASEAN 2017, will work with other member-states in identifying measures that will complement the community’s ongoing efforts to counter violent extremism and transnational crimes.
In terms of “inclusive, innovation-led growth,” Reyes said, “We are promoting entrepreneurship,” adding that through this, entrepreneurs can be equipped to be able to compete globally.
“Those are some examples that (could) help people (in the ASEAN Community),” Reyes added.
The six priorities are the result of consultations and planning workshops with all relevant Philippine government agencies.
The lead agencies of the Philippines for the three pillars of the ASEAN Community are the Department of Foreign Affairs for ASEAN Political-Security Community; the Department of Trade and Industry for the ASEAN Economic Community; and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community.