This year's ASEAN Chair Brunei Darussalam is convening a bi-annual gathering of ASEAN leaders to discuss the progress towards the realisation of the ASEAN Community by 2015, according to the ASEAN Secretariat.

With two years before the deadline, the implementation of the roadmap for an ASEAN community showed considerable gains across all the three pillars of the community, setting the stage for meeting the 2015 targets.

With the theme "Our People, Our Future Together", the 23rd ASEAN summit will discuss ways to consolidate these gains to meet the 2015 target of having an economically integrated, politically cohesive and socially responsible ASEAN community and to ensure ASEAN's position in the global community by 2015 and beyond.

The ASEAN leaders will meet with their counterparts and leaders of ASEAN's dialogue partners to discuss wide-ranging cooperation in the political-security, economic and socio-cultural spheres, which are undertaken through ASEAN-led mechanisms.

The 23rd ASEAN Summit will also see the turn-over of ASEAN Chairmanship to Myanmar who will assume leadership for the first time on January 1, 2014.

Secretary-General of ASEAN Le Luong Minh said: "The 23rd ASEAN summit marks a very productive year of ASEAN Community building. In my annual report to our ASEAN leaders, we are very pleased to note that we have seen a more concerted effort to assess and prioritise our work across the three pillars.

"For 2014, we will remain focused on expediting the implementation of the remaining 2015 targets and ensuring greater convergence of the three community pillars -- where peace, stability and development are, at the same time, each other’s conditions and driving force. By 2015 and beyond, it is our aim to ensure not only the continuity and sustainability of the existing momentum, but also to set the foundation for such concerted progress in a more challenging environment, with enhanced external interest and engagement in the region, and in much larger East Asian and Asia Pacific contexts."

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was established in 1967. ASEAN comprises Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. The ASEAN Summit is the supreme policy-making body of the bloc.-VNA