Arrival Statement of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. Upon His Return from the 42nd ASEAN Summit in Labuan Bajo, Indonesia

Location Villamor Air Base, Pasay City

Thank you, Secretary Ben Diokno.

All the members of the Cabinet who are here with us today.

Coming home accompanying us was of course the former President and now Majority Floor Leader President GMA; and the Speaker of the House, Speaker Martin Romualdez; the Executive Secretary Chief Luke; and of course our ever-present welcoming committee Pasay City Mayor Imelda Calixto-Rubiano; the AFP Chief of Staff General Andy Centino; Major Service Commanders; the Philippine Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Abu; and the best dressed at the coro — one of the best dressed at the coronation of King Charles, our First Lady, First Lady Liza Marcos [applause]; fellow workers in government; ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon.

I am happy to report on the outcomes of the Philippines’ participation in the 42nd [ASEAN] Summit held in Labuan Bajo, Indonesia on the 10th of May to the 11th 2023.

During our meetings with ASEAN Leaders, I emphasized the importance of upholding the international rules-based system which has underpinned regional security, peace and order in our region.

I expressed our commitment to the principles of free trade and the multilateral trading system, called for enhanced support for “nano” businesses, MSMEs, and their integration into the global economy. We continue to work towards long-term food and energy security; and to address the impacts of climate change, amongst other things.

The Philippines expressed support for the community-building efforts of ASEAN, including the strengthening of ASEAN’s institutions.

The Leaders also discussed regional and international developments.

During the discussions on the situation in Myanmar, I called for Myanmar to adhere to the Five-Point Consensus and expressed support for Indonesia’s enhanced initiatives in the implementation of the Five-Point Consensus.

We also came to an agreement that we would adjust our approach on the situation in Myanmar and to try to engage Myanmar at every level and to all the political factions that are active and are involved in that crisis situation in Myanmar. We came to this conclusion simply because we say what we have done? We have laid out the Five-Point Consensus and we put it forward to Myanmar but it has been two years and there has been no movement and we decided we must try – we must do it in other way. And there are many members who have experience in these long ongoing political negotiations and the advice is to engage everyone equally. And that is what we intend to do.

I of course expressed our deep concern regarding the humanitarian crisis and the continued economic impacts of the Russia-Ukraine war. This contributes to global food and
energy insecurity.

On the South China Sea, I reaffirmed the Philippines’ commitment to the peaceful resolution of disputes and advocated for a rules-based maritime order anchored on the 1982 UNCLOS.

On Timor-Leste, I conveyed that ASEAN should support Timor-Leste in its efforts towards full ASEAN membership, which we regard as just a matter of time as they had come to the Summit as an observer status.

I participated in Leaders’ Interfaces with the ASEAN Leaders with the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA), and Representatives from the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC), the ASEAN Youth, and the High-Level Task Force on the ASEAN Community Post-2025 Vision.

This Task Force has been given the job of charting the roadmap until 2025 for the transformation of the regional economy and the parts that each country will play in that resurgence.

I encouraged also our ASEAN’s External Partners to increase their levels of engagement in the BIMP-EAGA, which is a joint aggrupation of Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines, and to support its role – the BIMP-EAGA’s role – as a major catalyst in galvanizing economic development and enhancing connectivity in this vibrant sub-region.

I once again thank our host, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, for extending such hospitality to our delegation.

I look forward to continue working with the Chair, Indonesia and other ASEAN Member States as well as ASEAN’s external partners for the 43rd ASEAN Summit and Related Summits which will happen in September of 2023 in Jakarta. We will meet to advance our shared goals for a peaceful, secure, and more prosperous region.

I believe that the Summit was a success and that it charted new directions that were initiated by the chairman, President Widodo, and with the concurrence of all the Member States. And many new ideas were ventilated and many of those were adopted and we will see – hopefully see some progress on the political front and certainly on the economic front.

Thank you very much and good afternoon. [applause]



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