Ms Khongorzul CHAGNAADORJ, Director of the Management, Planning and Cooperation Department of the Mongolian Youth Federation, speaks to ASEF about her views on youth engagement in promoting Asia-Europe exchanges.
Q. What does the Mongolian Youth Federation believe the ASEM-youth would be most interested in seeing on the agenda of the ASEM process?
We are of the firm belief that the youth would strongly welcome the initiation of concrete actions and a strong vision to promote educational exchanges between the 2 regions. This would allow the ASEM process to undertake a more visible and proactive role in creating an environment conducive for Asia-Europe collaboration in education through projects such as university exchanges, youth programmes and capacity trainings. We also see a stronger interest among the youth to be a part of the ASEM process, be it during the ASEM meetings or its side-events, where the youth can share and build a joint Asia-Europe vision with senior leaders.
Q. During the 7th Model ASEM participants will develop a consensus-based Chair’s Statement on the theme “20 Years of ASEM: Partnership for Future through Connectivity”. How does the Mongolian Youth Federation believe youth can contribute to increasing connectivity between ASEM countries?
Youth are at the forefront of connectivity! The youth are mobile and connected, both online and offline. Today’s younger generations are the result of a connected world, in which they can interact face-to-face through social media platforms, share cultures and exchange perspectives on a daily basis without the obstacles of physical borders. Our organisation works actively to promote a wider inclusion of international opportunities for our members and students – and here we believe that the 11th ASEM Summit (ASEM11) and the 7th Model ASEM will mark a milestone in our work to promote Mongolia to foreign friends as well as to increase our youth’s exposure to international affairs. For us, these projects are connectivity in the making!
Q. What does the Asia-Europe collaboration mean to Mongolian youth?
The Mongolian youth are eager to play a more prominent role in the Asia-Europe collaboration led by ASEF and ASEM. We are glad to be a part of the 2 upcoming youth projects organised by ASEF, the 7th Model ASEM and the 20th ASEF Summer University, as they will allow our youth to influence and partake in these initiatives, as well as to learn from fellow peers from the other 50 ASEM countries. Our hope for the ASEM process and the Mongolian youth engagement is to have a fruitful and long-lasting collaboration, in which both parties can learn, share and improve together.