Below is a press release issued by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on 13/01/2020.

Foreign & Commonwealth Office Minister for Asia and the Pacific, Heather Wheeler MP, begins her visit to Southeast Asia in Indonesia.

During her visit to Southeast Asia, the Minister will seek to strengthen our partnership with the region and will officially open the new UK’s Mission at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Jakarta.

Speaking ahead of her visit, Foreign & Commonwealth Office Minister Heather Wheeler said:

“This visit is a fantastic opportunity to engage with our friends in the region on a number of important issues and opportunities including trade, human tracking, climate change and technology.

As part of the UK’s ambition to broaden our horizons and look beyond Europe to tackle global challenges such as climate change, we are committed to working with the rapidly growing economies of Southeast Asia who are such vital partners in that endeavour.”

The Minister will meet with key members of both governments including Indonesian Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs Mahendra Siregar and Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister To Anh Dung to promote 10 years of UK-Vietnam Strategic Partnership.

While in Jakarta, Minister Wheeler will visit the UK’s new Mission to ASEAN which aims to deepen our engagement with the 10 member states, building on existing collaboration and exploring new ways to engage with the organisation and its members.

UK-ASEAN trade was at a 10-year high of £37.2 billion in 2018, with £16.7 billion of UK exports to ASEAN with both sides looking forward to expanding this further once the UK has left the European Union at the end of the month.

In Hanoi, the Minister will discuss Vietnam’s role as Chair of ASEAN in 2020 as well as their election to the UN Security Council as a non-permanent member for the next 2 years.