Italy hopes to deepen relations with ASEAN hinh anh 1Italian President Sergio Mattarella (Photo: AP/VNA)
Jakarta (VNA) - Italy hopes to deepen its relationship with ASEAN and pledges to work with other members of the EU to promote ASEAN-EU dialogues.

Italian President Sergio Mattarella made the statement at a recent meeting with ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh in Jakarta, Indonesia.

He acknowledged Italy’s excellent rapport with ASEAN and expressed confidence that his visit to regional countries would help improve existing, mutually beneficial ties.

The President said he sees similarities in the EU’s and ASEAN’s integration processes. They have both focused on peace, stability and economic development.

He firmly believed in the future of the ASEAN-EU strategic partnership. He said Italy was committed to working with the bloc in politics, security, trade, investment and connectivity.

Secretary General Le Luong Minh welcomed the Italian President’s first visit to the ASEAN Secretariat and recalled Italy’s successful hosting of the 10 th Asia-Europe (ASEM) Summit in October 2014 in Milan, which helped develop dialogue and cooperation among Asian and European countries.

He also hailed Italy’s important role in promoting dialogue relations between ASEAN and the EU, adding that the agreements reached by the two sides aim to deepen bilateral relations, including possibly establishing an ASEAN-EU Strategic Partnership.

He further cited the decision made by ASEAN and EU in March 2015 to resume region-to-region Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations after the launch of the ASEAN Community at the end of this year.-VNA