Werner Hoyer, Minister of State at the Federal Foreign Office, is starting a trip today (3 August) taking him to the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia.
Speaking on the subject in Berlin, he issued the following statement today:
"Our relations with the countries of Southeast Asia are friendly and marked by mutual trust. However, we have to keep working on intensifying the exchange between Europe and Southeast Asia. This includes strengthening economic ties even more as well as promoting free trade. From an economic point of view, the region is highly dynamic and its market very important for German and European companies. But the region is also gaining political weight. During my meetings we will also be sharing our experiences of European and Southeast Asian integration.”
In the Philippines, Minister of State Hoyer is scheduled to have talks with the country’s Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Albert del Rosario. Issues to be discussed will include German and European relations with the Philippines, the peace process in Mindanao and the situation in the region more generally. The Minister of State will also meet Secretary of Justice Leila de Lima to discuss human rights issues and a new judicial reform project sponsored by the Federal Foreign Office. Talks with Transportation Secretary Manuel Roxas will focus on trade and economic issues. Finally, talks are also scheduled with the chairs of the Committees on Foreign Relations and on Justice and Human Rights.
During a short trip to Jakarta the Minister of State will meet the Secretary-General of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Dr Surin Pitsuwan, which will focus on current issues in the region and ASEAN’s relations with Germany as well as the European Union.
In Malaysia, talks are to be held with Prime Minister Najib Razak and Deputy Foreign Minister Richard Riot. They will discuss German-Malaysian relations as well as the domestic situation in Malaysia and economic topics. Meetings with opposition members as well as civil society and business representatives in Kuala Lumpur are also on the agenda.