Policy & History

Originally established on August 8, 1967, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is now comprised of ten member states (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam).

At the 12th ASEAN Summit in January 2007, the Leaders affirmed their strong commitment to accelerate the establishment of an ASEAN Community and signed the Cebu Declaration on the Acceleration of the Establishment of an ASEAN Community by 2015. The establishment of ASEAN Community is a historic milestone and a culmination of ASEAN’s resilience and dynamism throughout a journey of nearly half a century, and signals to the world how far and how well the ASEAN Member States have achieved in coming together as one community. The ASEAN Community is comprised of three pillars, namely the ASEAN Political-Security Community, ASEAN Economic Community and ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community.

With the slogan of “One Vision. One Identity. One Community”, the ASEAN Community ascertains that the goal of ASEAN’s founding fathers of improving the lives of its people is reflected on the region’s economic and cultural development, social progress, regional peace and security, collaboration, mutual assistance in training and research, improvement of living standards, promotion of Southeast Asian studies and cooperation with regional and international organizations.



Organizational Structure

Though ASEAN has many different working groups to coordinate efforts across numerous sectors and programs, an ASEAN Secretariat is located in Jakarta, Indonesia. The Secretariat (ASEC) provides logistical and support services to ASEAN working groups, representative bodies, and other ASEAN entities.

With the signing of the ASEAN Charter, ASEAN Member-States established Permanent Missions to ASEAN in Jakarta. Each Mission is headed by an Ambassador to ASEAN. These Ambassadors serve on the Council of Permanent Representatives (CPR) and are charged with local decision-making duties and coordinating with their respective governments.

For more ASEAN history, please visit ASEAN Secretariat website.