Ladies and Gentlemen,
On behalf of the Royal Thai Embassy in Manila, allow me to express my warmest welcome to all of you at the Thai residence tonight. It is my pleasure to exchange and share view with you on the development of ASEAN as it enters into the fourth decade. ?
For the first time in 41 years of regional cooperation, the creation of the? ASEAN charter represents a momentous occasion for ASEAN Member States to reiterate its commitment to community-building in ASEAN. The ASEAN charter? signifies its role as a regional player in the future by establishing the legal and institutional framework for ASEAN.
Let me now share with you all the important task assigned to the High Level Legal Experts? Group (HLEG) as they are now meeting in Manila. I am confident that this meeting will provide the impetus that will put direction to a stronger ASEAN community in the future encompassing ASEAN?s economic, political, social and cultural role. For us, as the present chairman of ASEAN during July 2008 ? December 2009, Thailand attaches high importance in materializing the ASEAN Charter. To take active part in the process, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand has assigned our two distinguished Ambassadors, Ambassador Vasin Teeravechyan and Ambassador Dr. Thanes Sucharikul, to work with all of you. With the fruits of your hard work on this aspect, your recommendations shall be further submitted to the ASEAN Foreign Ministers at the 14th ASEAN Summit in Bangkok in December, for guidance and direction.
Indeed, with your vast experience and in-depth knowledge as the resource persons of HLEG, I truly appreciate your contribution and firmly believe that your hard work will bring about the success of ASEAN. I wish you all the best and hope for your success in further strengthening ASEAN? greater efficiency.