Students from Model ASEM 2014 meet the Presidents of the European Council and the European Commission

Model ASEM3

4 Asian and European Students from Model ASEM 2014 meet the Presidents of the European Council and the European Commission

More than 120 students from all 49 Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) member countries met between 8 – 12 October 2014 in Milan, Italy, for Model ASEM 2014, a 4-day simulation of the 10th ASEM Summit. During the programme, participants jointly developed key messages for the ASEM Leaders’ attention and action.

Under the theme of “Responsible Partnership for Sustainable Growth and Security”, Model ASEM 2014 provided the students a platform to exchange perspectives and to create proposals on pertinent issues in Asia-Europe relations, including sustainable development, climate change mitigation and adaption, migration & human rights or public health. In Plenary Sessions and Working Groups, the students sharpened their negotiation and consensus-making skills and adopted a Chair’s Statement of Model ASEM 2014, which 4 selected students from Indonesia, Italy, Malta and Pakistan officially handed over and presented to the President of the European Council, H.E. Herman VAN ROMPUY, and to the President of the European Commission, H.E. Jose Manuel BARROSO.

During their 45-minutes interaction with the EU Leaders, the student representatives emphasised the importance for ASEM governments to consider “development” in a more holistic way. They also called for a wider participation and stronger engagement of the youth in the ASEM process. In particular, the students proposed the creation of an annual ASEM Youth Summit to foster human connectivity between both regions.

“On the eve of the ASEM Summit, it is essential to reflect on the future of Asian-European relations” said President VAN ROMPUY. “The Model ASEM simulation therefore provides a welcome opportunity for young students from both continents to contribute to formulating this future. I was very impressed with what they have delivered and I am confident that our relations are in safe hands also in the future.” he added.

Following the success of Model ASEM 2014, spin-offs of Model ASEM are planned to take place in France, Vietnam, Singapore and Netherlands.

Model ASEM was organised by the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), together with the ASEF University Alumni Network (ASEFUAN) and the Politecnico de Milano School of Management as the only youth project in support of the 10th ASEM Summit (ASEM10) on 16 and 17 October 2014 in Milan, Italy.