Ms. Lucinda Creighton TD, the Irish Minister of State for European Affairs, spoke at length about the work of ASEF during a public talk for the Economic Society of Singapore (24 April 2012). She participated in this talk whilst en route to the ASEAN-EU Ministerial Meeting in Brunei.
In her speech, Ms. Creighton reflected on the difficulties facing the EU during these hard economic times and praised Asia’s response to the “Asian Financial Crisis of the 1990s”. She highlighted that both crises have shown that there are lessons to be learned from each other. The Minister spoke at length on the role of ASEF and its “vital task of drawing Asia and Europe closer together”. While citing the findings of an ASEF-led “Perceptions” study, the Minister commented on the heartening conclusions about Asian perceptions of Europe.
Her speech concluded on how good relations between Asia and Europe can help lay the path through the current crisis and underscored the importance of mutual understanding and support in times of difficulty.