Officials and diplomats from the 10 ASEAN member countries gathered at a conference in Jakarta, Indonesia to debate the bloc’s sustainable development goals (SDGs) on September 2.

The conference was co-organised by the ASEAN Secretariat, the French Embassy in Indonesia and the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) in Singapore, with financial support from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), Germany’s Hanns Seidel Foundation and the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES).

Opening the event, ASEAN’s Deputy Secretary General for Community and Corporate Affairs, AKP Mochtan, called upon delegates to frankly discuss their concerns on sustainable development obstacles in order to achieve regional integration and build the projected ASEAN community by 2015.

At the conference, Prof. Emil Salim, the Indonesian President’s adviser for environment and sustainable development, highlighted the bloc’s key issues on food and energy security and educational quality in the process of dealing with SDGs.

ASEAN is made up of Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Malaysia, Brunei, the Philippines and Vietnam.-VNA