Le Luong Minh takes office as Secretary General of ASEAN

Web.HCYU. 10.01.2013. On January 9, the newly-appointed Secretary General of ASEAN Le Luong Minh assumed office at the ASEAN headquarters in Jakarta, Indonesia, after Mr. Surin Pitsuwan’s term ended. Source:CPV.

The ceremony was witnessed by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Indonesia, Dr R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa; and the outgoing Secretary General of the ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan. Also witnessing the ceremony were representatives from the diplomatic corps, international organisations, academics, business community as well as media.

From left to right : ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Indonesia, Dr R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa and outgoing Secretary General of the ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan (Photo: asean.org)
From left to right : ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Indonesia, Dr R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa and outgoing Secretary General of the ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan (Photo: asean.org)

Spokesman Luong Thanh Nghi of the Vietnam's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that at the 45th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting (AMM 45), Vietnam officially nominated Deputy Foreign Minister Le Luong Minh as the next Secretary General.

Le Luong Minh was born in 1952. He graduated from the Institute of Foreign Affairs in Hanoi (Vietnam), and the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi (India). He was appointed as Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister in December 2008 and has served in the Foreign Affairs Ministry in various capacities before that, including as Deputy Director General, then as Director General for International Organizations, and as Director General for Multilateral Economic Cooperation.

Since February 17, 2004, he has been Vietnam's Ambassador to the UN in New York City, and was head of the Vietnamese Mission to the UN when Vietnam was the non-permanent member of the UN Security Council from 2008-1009.

“When I first walked into the ASEAN Secretariat building last September during my informal visit, I was at first sight struck by a feeling of togetherness. I saw in the lobby not only the flags of the ten ASEAN member states, but also those of ASEAN’s partners. It is this feeling of togetherness that has made ASEAN a proud and strong organization—strong in itself and in its will for cooperation. It is the same feeling of togetherness I am experiencing here today and I thank you all for honoring this handover ceremony with your valuable presence,” Mr Minh said in his first speech as the new Secretary General of ASEAN.

“Despite the many challenges, I fully believe that ASEAN will emerge triumphant. The ASEAN Secretariat will continue to play active roles in supporting and coordinating with Member States to help facilitate and drive the establishment of the ASEAN Community. There is room to improve policy implementation across the political-security, economic, and socio-cultural pillars, streamline the performance of our institutions, further prioritise issues with a view to improving national and regional coordination. The work of the Secretariat will be geared in this direction,” he further added.

According to the principles of ASEAN, the Secretary General position is nominated alternately among the 10 member countries. The term of this position lasts for five years. After Thailand, it is Vietnam’s turn to nominate its representative to this position and Vietnam nominated Deputy Foreign Minister Le Luong Minh.

The five-year tenure of Mr Minh will be from 1 January 2013 to 31 December 2017. His appointment was formally endorsed by the ASEAN Leaders at the 21st ASEAN Summit in Cambodia in November 2012.

“The next five years will be an exciting and critical one. I and we in the secretariat are prepared to work closely with ASEAN Member States to ensure that we are able to deliver our major commitments and objectives. As I am joining your journey, I look forward to enjoying more than your physical company," he closed his speech.

Earlier, Mr Le Luong Minh arrived in Jakarta on January 6 to prepare for taking office at the ASEAN headquarter with nearly 300 staffs.


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