Education Ministers from the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organisation (SEAMEO) member countries and representatives from regional organisations gathered in Pattaya, Thailand on May 7 for the 48th SEAMEO Council Confernce.

At the opening session, Vietnamese Minister of Education and Training Pham Vu Luan, who was the President of the SEAMEO Council (2013-2015), highlighted the role of the organisation in boosting regional cooperation in education, science and culture.

This year’s conference, which is also marking the 50 th anniversary of the founding of SEAMEO, is contributing to realising the commitment of regional leaders to accelerate the formation of an ASEAN Community in 2015, Minister Luan said.

During the first plenary session, Thai Minister of Education Narong Pipatanasai was selected to be the new SEAMEO President.

He highlighted 2015 as an important period for SEAMEO’s goals in sustainable development objectives such as fostering community integration, vocational training and applying advanced training programmes.

SEAMEO, a trans-governmental organisation in Southeast Asia, was established in 1965. Its 11 members are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste and Vietnam.

SEAMEO has 20 regional centres and a network to conduct its research and training programmes in different areas including education, science and culture.-VNA