The ASEAN leaders will meet with their dialogue partners at the year-end summit in September, two months earlier than usual, according to an informed diplomatic source.
The source said that Indonesia has already set the timetable for important fixtures during its chairmanship, including all the ASEAN-related summits.
After the ASEAN ministerial retreat on February 3rd and 4th at the ASEAN Secretariat, the annual ASEAN Ministerial meeting will be held on July 11th-15th.
There will be two summits, the first one, the 42nd, among the ASEAN members on May 9th-11th, followed by a second, the 43rd, and The East Asia Summit on September 5th-7th with dialogue partners, two months ahead of normal.
The source said that the dates were fixed in September to align with the dates set by India, which holds the current presidency of the G20. Jakarta hosted the G20 last year.
At the early February retreat, Indonesia will lay out the ASEAN agenda, as well as the chair’s priorities. These include various aspects of human-related security, such as food, health, energy, financial stability and supply-chain resilience. Regional and international issues will also feature high on this year’s agenda, including the Myanmar crisis, the ongoing war in Ukraine, the Korean Peninsula and the South China Sea, to name just a few.
At her recent annual press conference on Indonesia’s foreign policy, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi also reiterated that ASEAN must be prepared for ASEAN 2045, in which the new chair is playing an important role in terms of shaping the vision.
She added that ASEAN centrality must be reinforced to maintain peace and stability in Southeast Asia and the Indo Pacific. Cooperation in tackling cross-border crime and human rights dialogues must be strengthened.
For Myanmar, Indonesia has set up an Office of the ASEAN Special Envoy, which will be headed by Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi.