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About ASEM

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The Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) is a biennial meeting which was officially established in 1996 at the first summit in Bangkok, Thailand as an exclusive Eurasian forum to enhance relations and various forms of cooperation between the 28 members of the European Union (EU) and its commission, 21 Asian countries including the members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and its secretariat, and the individual countries of China, Japan, and South Korea.
The initial ASEM partnerships in 1996 consisted of 15 EU member states and 7 ASEAN member states plus China, Japan, South Korea and the European Commission. ASEM then gradually expanded their scope of partnerships. Currently the total ASEM membership is 53 partners.

The 11th ASEM Summit
(2016, Ulaanbaatar Mongolia)
No enlargement
The 10th ASEM Summit
(2014, Milan Italy)
2 new members

Croatia and Kazakhstan

The 9th ASEM Summit
(2012, Vientiane Lao DPR)
3 new members

Bangladesh, Norway and Switzerland

The 8th ASEM Summit
(2010, Brussels Belgium)
3 new members

Australia, New Zealand and Russia

The 7th ASEM Summit
(2008, Beijing China)
No enlargement
The 6th ASEM Summit
(2006, Helsinki Finland)
6 new members

Bulgaria, India, Mongolia, Pakistan, Romania and the ASEAN Secretariat

The 5th ASEM Summit
(2004, Hanoi Vietnam)
13 new members

Cambodia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Lao DPR, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Myanmar , Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia

The main components of the ASEM process rest on the following three so-called pillars
· the Political Pillar
· the Economical Pillar
· the Social, Cultural and Educational Pillar

In general, the process is considered by the parties involved to be a way of deepening the relations between Asia and Europe at all levels, which is deemed necessary to achieve a more balanced political and economic world order. The process is enhanced by the biennial meetings of heads of state, alternately in Europe and Asia, and biennial meetings of Foreign Ministers as well as political, economic, and socio-cultural meetings and events at various levels.