45 years of partnership

The year 2022 marks 45 years of partnership between the EU and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The EU’s relationship with ASEAN was elevated to a Strategic Partnership in December 2020.

In 2021, the EU recognised the centrality of ASEAN in the EU Strategy for Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific. The strategy voices the EU’s commitments to contribute to the region’s stability, security, prosperity and sustainable development, in line with the principles of democracy, rule of law, human rights and international law.

EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy / Vice President of the European Commission, Josep Borrell, and Executive Vice President of the European Commission for the Green Deal, Frans Timmermans, visited the ASEAN Secretariat in 2021. These high-level visits are one element of the EUASEAN Strategic Partnership action which is based on shared values and interests, and a common goal to jointly address global challenges.

I am a strong believer in enhancing the cooperation between the EU and ASEAN. So coming closer together, working together, on shaping our commun future is something I am very much looking forward to.”

Frans Timmermans,

Executive Vice President of the
European Commission for the Green Deal


Priority areas of the EU Strategy
for Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific :

Priority areas

EU-ASEAN cooperation is aligned with the


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Political and security cooperation

As a founding member of the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), the EU is committed to increasing its cooperation with ASEAN on political and security issues. The growing number of visits and dialogue events reflects the mutual goal to increase regional security and stability.

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Economic cooperation

The EU is working towards improving trade-related regulatory and policy frameworks, intellectual property rights, standards, customs and transport, and civil aviation. The ultimate objective is to accelerate regional economic integration and improve livelihoods in the ASEAN region.

Socio-cultural cooperation

EU cooperation addresses higher education, health, land use and forestry, disaster management and preparedness, biodiversity protection and the effective management of protected areas, sustainable urbanisation, sustainable agriculture, and improving labour conditions for migrant women.