Asean Summit: Heavy workload awaits leaders starting to arrive today

  • Nation
  • Friday, 20 Nov 2015

KUALA LUMPUR: A gruelling workload and hectic pace awaits 18 heads of states and governments who will be arriving here today to attend the 27th Asean Summit and related summits.

The two days in Kuala Lumpur is no holiday for them, with 10 summits and 59 documents to pore over.

The workload for leaders and delegates are always hectic in any Asean Summit. More so this time around as the regional body, under Malaysia’s chairmanship is preparing to welcome the arrival of an Asean Community by the end of next month.

United States President Barack Obama, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi will be among the leaders of Asean’s eight dialogue partners who will have their fair share of the workload.

From tomorrow to Sunday, they will aim to adopt, sign, endorse or issue 59 documents. These include the Asean Convention Against Trafficking in Persons especially Women and Children, the East Asia Summit Declaration on the Global Movement of Moderates and the East Asia Summit Declaration on Countering Violent Extremism.

Apart from the Asean Summit, other summits which will be held are the East Asia Summit involving all 18 leaders and the Asean Plus Three Summit involving Asean with China, Japan and Korea.

Then there are the six Asean Plus One summits comprising separate meetings between Asean and China, India, the United States, South Korea, Japan and New Zealand, as well as a summit with the United Nations which will be represented by its secretary general Ban Ki-moon.

Asean Summits have always been packed to the brim with meetings, with leaders expected to attend many back-to-back meetings and bilateral sessions.

As the host of the Asean Summit, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak will have a lot on his plate.

The Prime Minister will be chairing all the summits and plenary sessions and is expected to take part in bilateral meetings with several counterparts from today until Sunday.

Najib will be meeting Obama, Li, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Australia’s Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Ban.

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