His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu'izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar 'Ali Saifuddien Sa'adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam delivered a titah praised the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement which has strengthened the ASEAN-Australia economic partnership. His Majesty also added that the agreement has benefited trade flows, and served as a platform for other Free Trade Area frameworks as well as ASEAN economic integration. His Majesty made the titah at the Leaders' Plenary Session of the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit which was held at the International Convention Centre Sydney.
Upon arriving at the centre, His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam was greeted by The Honourable Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of Australia. His Majesty later proceeded to the Grand Ballroom for the Leaders' Plenary Session of the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit, together with The Honourable Prime Minister of Australia and other Heads of State as well as Government of ASEAN. The Leaders' Plenary Session commenced with a welcoming speech by The Honourable Prime Minister of Australia for all the ASEAN leaders attending the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit. This was followed by opening remarks from His Excellency Lee Hsien Loong, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, as Chairman of ASEAN.
During the Plenary Session, His Majesty delivered a titah reflecting on the growth of ASEAN-Australian relationship over the years since Australia became ASEAN's first dialogue partner. His Majesty added that the Summit is an opportunity to enhance the strategic relationship between the people of ASEAN and Australia.
His Majesty highlighted that continued cooperation through exchange programmes such as the Colombo Plan and the Scholarships are vital in bridging the people and nurturing mutual understanding, especially among the youth.
His Majesty underscored the importance of the digital economy as a growing and useful platform to connect and expand business networks regionally and beyond, and he welcomed closer cooperation towards supporting the development of enterprises.
On security, His Majesty highlighted the importance of ensuring a safe and stable environment, and that maintaining regional peace should be a priority in future collaborations.
His Majesty welcomed the collaborative efforts in combatting terrorism and transnational crimes, through exchanging information and intelligence sharing between law enforcement agencies.
His Majesty commended many initiatives Australia had undertaken to commemorate the Special Summit, which marks a new beginning in its relationship with ASEAN.
During the Plenary Session, the leaders also discussed issues of cooperation and exchanged views on regional and international matters, as well as the future course of ASEAN-Australia relations. The leaders were also briefed with the reports and resolutions of the Business Summit and the Counter-Terrorism Conference which were held earlier.
Source: Radio Television Brunei