Curtain Raiser – ‘ASEAN Corner’ at ISSI being inaugurated tomorrow

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Curtain Raiser
‘ASEAN Corner’ at ISSI being inaugurated tomorrow

The Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI) has established an ‘ASEAN Corner’ which will be inaugurated in a formal ceremony by the Foreign Minister and ASEAN Envoys on 23 October 2023.

The inauguration would be followed by a Roundtable Discussion, titled: “Forging Partnerships: Exploring the Future Prospects of Pakistan-ASEAN Relations. The event is being organized by ISSI’s China Pakistan Study Centre (CPSC).

The establishment of ‘ASEAN Corner’ at ISSI is based on the conviction that a deeper understanding of ASEAN and its role, place and relevance in the region and the world is of crucial importance.

The initiative, agreed between ISSI and ASEAN Committee in Islamabad (ACI) during their structured interaction in January 2023, is part of the efforts to forge a closer partnership between Pakistan and ASEAN.

ASEAN and Pakistan share a long-standing and growing relationship, built on the pillars of economic cooperation and regional stability. Pakistan’s strategic location as a bridge between South Asia and the Middle East complements ASEAN’s focus on trade and connectivity across diverse regions. Moreover, mutual collaboration extends to various sectors — including industry, investment, agriculture, education, science and technology, tourism, and counterterrorism efforts, reinforcing their commitment to economic development and regional security. As the world faces evolving geopolitical dynamics, the partnership between ASEAN and Pakistan remains vital for fostering peace and prosperity in the Asian region.

Despite geographical distance, ASEAN and Pakistan have nurtured a strong and mutually beneficial relationship over the years. Pakistan’s ‘Vision East Asia’ policy reflects its resolve to deepen cooperation with ASEAN across myriad fields. ASEAN, on the other hand, values Pakistan as a significant partner in its external relations. The two sides continue to strengthen mutual bonds through enhanced diplomatic engagement, joint ventures, and people-to-people exchanges. In the face of global challenges, the ASEAN-Pakistan relationship serves as a testament to the regional cooperation and shared aspirations for a stable and prosperous Asia.

Within this backdrop, the inauguration of the ‘ASEAN Corner’ at ISSI is an important step. It is envisaged that the print and electronic resources accumulated at the ‘ASEAN Corner’ would enable researchers, academics, scholars and practitioners to deepen their understanding of Southeast Asia’s political, economic, and security dynamics and propose ideas for broader and more substantive engagement.

Furthermore, the Roundtable Discussion following the inauguration ceremony involves high-level diplomats from ASEAN, senior officials from Pakistan, and business representatives. The event aims to bringing together academics and practitioners to analyze Pakistan’s evolving ties with ASEAN and offering insights into regional challenges and opportunities. Their expertise will help put forth policy recommendations on upgrading Pakistan’s partnership with ASEAN.

The inaugural ceremony will include the unveiling of the plaque of the ‘ASEAN Corner’ by the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, Ambassador Jalil Abbas Jilani, accompanied by the Heads of ASEAN Missions in Islamabad.