Over 150 students from Asia and Europe gathered in Yangon & Naypyidaw, Myanmar from 15-20 November 2017 for the 8th Model ASEM, which was held in conjunction with the 13th ASEM Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (ASEM FMM13). At the 8th Model ASEM, a political simulation of the actual ASEM Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (ASEM FMM), students got the opportunity to experience Asia-Europe diplomacy through role-play exercises and practical trainings, as well as meetings with the ASEM Leaders.
The conference began in Yangon where students visited the diplomatic missions of Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, India, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Singapore, Sweden, Thailand, and Viet Nam, meeting with respective Ambassadors and staff, following which they travelled to Naypyidaw for the main segment of the conference. Abiding by the procedures of the ASEM FMM13, participants of the 8th Model ASEM negotiated a Chair’s Statement through role play and debates in plenary sessions and specific Thematic Working Groups. The Chair’s Statement was handed over to the Union Minister of Education of Myanmar HE Dr Myo Thein Gyi. The 6 Thematic Working Groups were: Innovation & ICT as Catalysts of ASEM Connectivity; Education, Skills Training & ASEM Youth; Joint Efforts in Combatting Terrorism; Challenges and Opportunities of Migration; Ending all Forms of Poverty; and Renewable Energy and Climate Change. 4 students participated in the Opening Ceremony of the ASEM FMM13 to address the Foreign Ministers of the 53 ASEM Partners on the Youth’s views on ASEM’s future direction. The Youth Intervention will pave the way for a closer leadership exchange between the youth and political leaders within ASEM. The conference also facilitated direct interactions between student delegates and their respective Foreign Ministers and/or Senior Officials, with the support of several Ministries of Foreign Affairs.
The 8th Model ASEM was held in partnership with the Ministry of Education of Myanmar, the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) and DiploFoundation. Supporters included the Government of Japan, the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office, the International Association for Political Science Students (IAPSS), the Erasmus Student Network (ESN), the European Students Union (ESU) and the European Students’ Forum (AEGEE-Europe).