Natural Partners

A partnership of equals

The EU and ASEAN are committed partners in sustainable development and enjoy mutually beneficial cooperation in areas such as economic integration, connectivity, the environment and climate change mitigation and education.

As the EU increasingly takes on the role of a global security actor and engages in ASEAN-led processes, EU-ASEAN cooperation continues to expand into new fields such as maritime security, counterterrorism and transnational crime.

Dialogue meeting in Brussels
The second ASEAN-EU Dialogue on Sustainable Development, held in Brussels on 10 February 2020, opened with statements by Jutta Urpilainen, European Commissioner for International Partnerships, and H.E. Don Pramudwinai, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand, the ASEAN Coordinator on Sustainable Development Cooperation.

Connectivity, which is central to the EU’s approach in its strengthening relationship with ASEAN, provides a new way to develop practical forms of cooperation which benefit all citizens in both regions. The EU’s approach is based on the principles of cooperation, collaboration, equality, fair negotiation and participation. Both regions share the same objectives of peace and security, increased trade and resilience, and greater prosperity for all.

Recognising the impressive progress made in the implementation of the EUASEAN Plan of Action for 2018-2022, in January 2019 the 22nd EU-ASEAN meeting of Foreign Ministers agreed, in principle, to upgrade EU-ASEAN relations to the level of a Strategic Partnership. This will allow increased engagement on key regional and global issues.

Graphic - 3 Pillars

The strengthening of EU-ASEAN relations will continue to be driven by shared values and interests, a mutual desire to cooperate on addressing common challenges, and a commitment on both sides to the rules-based international order.

Graphic - Natural partners
Graphic - 2019 Highlights