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Tánaiste attends ASEM Foreign Ministers Meeting in Madrid

Tánaiste attends ASEM Foreign Ministers Meeting in Madrid
Asia & Europe - Together for Effective Multilateralism

The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Simon Coveney T.D., will attend the 14th Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM) Foreign Minister’s Meeting (FMM) on 15-16 December in Madrid.

ASEM is the main forum for dialogue and cooperation between Asia and Europe. Its biannual Foreign Ministers Meeting is one the largest gathering of its kind. There are 53 partners in ASEM, with 21 countries from Asia Pacific, including the largest countries in the region such as China, India, Japan and Australia. The meeting will be inaugurated by His Majesty King Felipe VI, and chaired by the newly-appointed EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Mr. Josep Borrell.

Speaking in advance of the meeting, the Tánaiste said:

“The Government has prioritised developing relations with our partners in Asia, in line with our ambitions to double our impact through the Global Ireland programme. ASEM is a key forum in which to meet with my counterparts and to hold open and informal discussions on areas of global interest. I look forward to underlining Ireland’s commitment to the rules-based international order, the importance we attach to a multilateral system centred on the UN, and the peaceful settlement of disputes.

“Having consulted my government colleagues, I will shortly launch Ireland’s new strategy for the region, Global Ireland: Delivering in the Asia Pacific Region to 2025. Ireland is increasing its presence there and now has 15 embassies and consulates in 11 countries throughout the region. This is set to rise further with the opening of a new embassy in Manila in 2020, and then a third consulate in China. Ireland’s economic agencies, the IDA, Enterprise Ireland, Bord Bia and Tourism Ireland, are also increasing their presence, and we are seeing greater engagement with the region across the whole of our government.

“In addition to using ASEM as a forum in which to find common ground on some of the most pressing global issues – including climate change, cybersecurity and gender equality – it is also an opportunity to demonstrate to our partners from Asia Pacific how Ireland remains at the heart of the EU. I look forward to providing my counterparts with an update on European developments, including Brexit, and I will also avail of this gathering to present Ireland’s candidature for the UN Security Council.”


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