A ceremony was held in Ho Chi Minh City on August 8 to mark the 47th anniversary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

Addressing the event, Phan Thi Hong Xuan, President of the Vietnam-Southeast Asia Friendship Association in the city, noted that since it was founded in 1967, the association has been an indispensable factor for peace, stability and development in the region.

ASEAN has played the role as a momentum for dialogues, cooperation and connectivity among its member countries as well as in Southeast Asia and Asia-Pacific.

At the same time, the bloc is also a large market with great potential, along with its diversity of cultural identities, politics and socio-economics, she said.

Xuan held that in the context of complicated regional and international relations with many emerging challenges, ASEAN should strengthen its regional connectivity and its intra-bloc solidarity for the successful building of an ASEAN Community by 2015 and for peace, stability of each member and the whole region.

On behalf of Consulate-Generals of ASEAN member states in Ho Chi Minh City, Lao Consul-General Southideth Phommalat said the association has become a momentum for the global economic development, adding that an ASEAN Community will create a playground for countries with common commitments to the sustainable development as well as peace and prosperity in the region.

Vietnam’s representatives August 8 also participated in a number of events abroad to mark the 47 th anniversary of the association.

In Malaysia’s capital Kuala Lumpur, Vietnamese youths joined about 1,000 counterparts from the host country and ASEAN members in a food and culture festival aiming to boost the close friendship among ASEAN youngsters.

In Buenos Aires, Vietnamese Ambassador to Argentina attended a get-together held by Argentine Foreign Ministry to mark the event.

ASEAN groups ten member countries, namely Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Laos, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.-VNA