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International Issues

Regional dialogue and cooperation - ASEM

The Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) is an informal process of dialogue and co-operation launched in 1996. From an initial membership of 25 countries, it now brings together 51 partners, including the 27 European Union (EU) Member States, the European Commission, 22 Asian countries and Norway and Switzerland. The ASEM dialogue addresses political, economic and cultural issues, with the objective of strengthening the relationship between the two regions in a spirit of equal partnership.

The European Commission and the Presidency of the European Union co-ordinate the ASEM process together with co-coordinators on the Asian side - currently Brunei and China.

The 10th Asia Europe Summit (ASEM 10) took place in Milan (Italy) in October 2014.

ASEM and the environment

The theme of the 10th ASEM Summit was "Responsible Partnership for Growth and Security". Leaders reaffirmed their commitment to further cooperation with the view to better addressing the challenges posed by the environmental impact of economic development and to pursue efforts at all levels towards reaching the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015.

Environment Ministerial meetings are also organised under the ASEM umbrella. The fourth and most recent ASEM environment ministerial meeting was hosted by Mongolia in May 2012. The meeting focused on sustainable water and forestry management.

ASEM InfoBoard