May 03, 2017

Castro, Wagner Introduce Resolution Recognizing ASEAN’s 50th Anniversary and the 40th Anniversary of U.S.-ASEAN Relations

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Congressional Caucus on ASEAN founding co-chairs Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20) and Congresswoman Ann Wagner (MO-02) introduced a resolution recognizing the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and highlighting member nations’ contributions to stability, prosperity, and peace in Southeast Asia. The resolution also marks the 40th anniversary of U.S.-ASEAN relations and recognizes the positive outcomes of that engagement. 

“As part of his administration’s pivot to Asia, President Obama made it a priority for the United States to strengthen ties with ASEAN members, elevating the U.S.-ASEAN relationship to a strategic partnership. The Congressional Caucus on ASEAN seeks to build on that progress and foster even closer relations between the United States and ASEAN,” said Rep. Castro, who is a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. “As we mark the 50th anniversary of ASEAN’s formation and welcome ASEAN foreign ministers to Washington, D.C., this resolution recognizes the strength of the U.S.-ASEAN economic and strategic partnership and the importance of increased engagement between the United States and ASEAN member states. Working together, the United States and ASEAN can address pressing issues like the North Korean threat, maritime disputes, human trafficking, access to education, and food security. Our nations will become safer and more prosperous if we deepen our relationships.”

Among its provisions, the resolution reaffirms the enhancement of United States-ASEAN economic engagement; recognizes the value of  ASEAN working with economic, political, and security partners such as Australia, Canada, the European Union, India, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, the Republic of Korea, and  Taiwan both inside of and outside of Asia; opposes actions by any country to prevent any other country from exercising its sovereign rights to the resources of the exclusive economic zone; and encourages President Trump to communicate to ASEAN leaders the importance of protecting human rights. 

“Today, I am proud to join Congressman Castro in introducing this resolution to recognize the 50th anniversary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations,” said Rep. Wagner, who is a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. “In January, we started the bipartisan Congressional Caucus on ASEAN to expand dialogue and engagement with our Southeast Asian peers, and we are delighted to reaffirm the special relationship between ASEAN and the United States. From trade to maritime security, from business to human rights, the U.S.-ASEAN strategic partnership is one of America’s most important, and I issue a hearty welcome to the ASEAN foreign ministers in Washington this week.”

Full text of the resolution is available here: LINK