Kao Kim Hourn, Secretary-General of ASEAN, will be on an official visit to India from February 11 to 15, the Ministry of External Affairs said in a press release. This will be the first official visit by Kao to India since assuming charge in January 2023. During the visit, Secretary-General of ASEAN is scheduled to have meetings with the External Affairs Minister and other dignitaries in Delhi.
He will deliver the Sapru House Lecture organised by the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) on the theme “The ASEAN-India Comprehensive Strategic Partnership in the Evolving Regional Architecture,” MEA also said. At the invitation of the Government of India, Secretary-General of ASEAN will visit the Mahabodhi Temple Complex, a UNESCO World Heritage site, in Gaya. He is scheduled to deliver an address on “The Future of ASEAN: ASEAN’s Relevance and Resilience in the Evolving Strategic Environment” at the Nalanda University in Rajgir.
Students from ASEAN Member States pursue higher education at the University under ASEAN-India cooperation projects. The Nalanda University also leads the ASEAN-India Network of Universities (AINU), it added. Engagement with ASEAN is an important pillar of India’s Act East Policy, which has entered into its 10th year in 2024, as well as its vision for the wider Indo-Pacific. In 2022, the ASEAN-India relations were elevated to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.
India firmly supports ASEAN centrality and the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP). India also supports the priorities set by Lao PDR in its ASEAN Chairmanship for the year 2024 under the theme “ASEAN: Enhancing Conectivity and Resilience,” the MEA release concluded.