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Asia Pacific

Renewing our commitment to delivering in the Asia Pacific Region to 2025

On 24 October 2023, the Tánaiste, Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Minister for Defence Micheál Martin launched Ireland’s updated strategy Global Ireland: Renewing our commitment to delivering in the Asia Pacific Region to 2025

In his keynote address at the Global Ireland Summit, the Tánaiste said: “This region includes important global actors who are essential to addressing shared challenges including climate change, peace and security. It also drives two thirds of global economic growth”.

Representing half of the world’s population, Asia Pacific countries are at the forefront of innovation and design. The integrated, Team Ireland approach central to this Strategy has been an important driver in delivering and exceeding Ireland’s target of €100 billion in two-way trade with the region, two years ahead of the planned date of 2025.

The 2020 Asia Pacific Strategy has been reviewed and updated in recognition of the fact that the world around us has been transformed in recent years and to reflect the progress that has been made with the 2020 Strategy to date. 'Renewing our commitment to delivering in the Asia Pacific Region to 2025', a revised and renewed strategy, was published in October 2023.

one man standing in a suit and tie behind three musicians seated with a violin, accordion and guitar, all arein front of an old painting
The then Taoiseach Micheál Martin T.D. meeting with Japanese musicians during his visit to Japan in July 2022

The Asia-Europe Meeting

The Asia-Europe Meeting, known as ASEM, is an intergovernmental process established in 1996 that fosters dialogue between Asia and Europe. It was established in 1996 and is comprised of 53 partners: 30 European and 21 Asian nations, the European Union and the ASEAN Secretariat.

ASEM utilises an informal process of dialogue and cooperation to address political, economic, financial, social, cultural and educational issues of common interest in a spirit of mutual respect and equal partnership. The ASEM summit, which is held on a biennial basis involves a meeting between the ASEM Heads of State and Government, the President of the European Council, the President of the European Commission and the Secretary-General of ASEAN.

At the most recent ASEM Summit hosted virtually by Cambodia in 2021, the Taoiseach Micheal Martin T.D. engaged with peers across Asia and Europe. The plenary sessions were an opportunity to discuss areas of mutual interest, to promote post-pandemic economic recovery and to address key regional issues.

For more information on ASEM please see the ASEM Infoboard, which contains information on ASEM’s working practices and the pillars underpinning its work.

two men shaking hands on an old carpet with men and women in suits in three lines facing them
The then Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Simon Coveney T.D., meeting with His Majesty King Felipe VI, 16 December 2019

The Asia-Europe Foundation

The Asia-Europe Foundation, often referred to as ASEF, was created by the members of ASEM to strengthen Asia-Europe ties, create shared experiences for learning and dialogue, enhance mutual understanding between Europe and Asia, and explore opportunities for cooperation between Asia and Europe.

Since ASEF’s founding in 1997, it has brought together over 20,000 people from Asia and Europe and overseen more than 700 projects focused on culture, economy, education, governance, public health and sustainable development.

ASEF runs more than 25 projects a year, consisting of around 100 activities, mainly conferences, seminars, workshops, lectures, publications, and online platforms, together partner organisations. Each year over 3,000 Asians and Europeans participate in ASEF's activities, and much wider audiences are reached through its various events, networks and web-portals. 

University College Cork hosts the ASEM Life Long Learning hub, an ASEF project bringing together academics from Asia – Europe.

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