On the morning of January 13, 2007, the 12th ASEAN (the Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Summit officially kicked off in Cebu, a city in the central part of the Philippines. A number of topics including the drafting of the ASEAN Charter will be discussed during the meeting.
The Summit officially opened at 9:05 a.m. local time. Leaders of the 10 ASEAN member countries and ASEAN Secretary-General attended the meeting. In her speech President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo of the Philippines expressed hope that the Summit will push for the building of a "caring and sharing community" within ASEAN. She also declared that the major agenda of the first day's meeting cover the drafting of the ASEAN Charter and the foreign relations of ASEAN.
During the Summit the ASEAN leaders also prepare to issue a statement aiming at promoting the Doha round of talks and continuing to push forward the global economic integration. To sign the ASEAN Convention on Counter Terrorism which will become the first legal document on counter terrorism in Southeast Asia is another major topic of the Summit. In addition, the Summit will also adopt documents on such issues as energy cooperation and security and the safety and welfare of migrant workers abroad.