His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu'izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar 'Ali Saifuddien Sa'adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, yesterday afternoon joined the 13th Asia-Europe Meeting, ASEM Summit, which was held virtually from Baitul Mesyuarah, Istana Nurul Iman.
At the Summit, His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam in his titah highlights that this meeting which coincides with ASEM's 25th anniversary provides a good opportunity to reflect on its value and significance.
When ASEM Leaders gathered at the first Summit, His Majesty recalls that they recognised the huge potential in linking Asia and Europe to achieve greater growth and prosperity. This partnership is vital now as Member Partners recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
In this regard, His Majesty underlines the importance to align digital connectivity efforts to the needs of the peoples and business. Therefore, Brunei is pleased that this effort will be advanced through the ASEM Connectivity initiative.
His Majesty also stresses that timely and equitable access to vaccines as well as recognising vaccines as listed in the WHO's Emergency Use Listing is important in resuming safe travel to forge educational, social and cultural links.
Lastly, His Majesty states that the issue of mental health should also be addressed to prevent long-term impacts to the economy and the people; and underlines that Brunei sees huge potential for ASEM to cooperate in this area through the sharing of expertise and best practices.
Earlier in the Meeting, opening remarks were delivered by His Excellency Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, as Chair of the 13th ASEM Summit; His Excellency Mr. Charles Michel, President of the European Council, as the Regional Coordinator for European Group; Her Excellency Mrs. Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, as the Regional Coordinator for European Group; His Excellency Mr. Mikhail Mishustin, Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, as the Regional Coordinator for NESA Group; His Excellency Mr. Janez Janša, Prime Minister of the Republic of Slovenia, as the EU Council Presidency and Regional Coordinator for European Group; and His Excellency Prayut Chan- o- cha, Prime Minister of Thailand, as the Regional Coordinator for ASEAN Group.
At the Summit, the leaders observed statements by stakeholders of ASEM.