ASEAN) was held at the Island of Lombok.
The meeting discussed about the ASEAN Community which shall be effective in 2015, and other matters such as pressures on Myanmar by Western countries, etc.
This news reminded me of a seminar about ASEAN organized by our Foreign Ministry and the Bekasi Blogger Community in Bekasi, West Java on 7 August 2010, that I attended with 100 other bloggers, students, teachers and journalist.
The Ministry was represented by the Director General of ASEAN Cooperation and three directors who explained that on 15 December 2008, ASEAN launched a Charter, that turned the organization into a legal entity and aimed to create a single Free Trade Area for the region encompassing more than 550 million people.
When the Free Trade Area between ASEAN and China became effective on 1 January 2010, many industrial and trade organizations in Indonesia protested by saying that they are not ready to compete with Customs Free imported goods especially from China, and requested for 2-3 years postponement.
While the ASEAN Community will start in 2015 and will be based on three pillars i.e. Security Community, Economic Community and Socio-Cultural Community.
I hope that the governments of ASEAN countries would do their very best to socialize the idea of ASEAN Community and the benefits that it would bring, so that people in those countries would want to have a closer relationship with each other. This can be done among others by conducting joint events in the fields of sports like the AFF Soccer tournament, culture, education, etc.