Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM)

Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) is an informal process of dialogue and co-operation bringing together the 28 European Union Member States and the European Commission with 21 Asian countries and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretariat. The ASEM dialogue addresses political, economic and cultural issues, with the objective of strengthening the relationship between the two regions, in a spirit of mutual respect and equal partnership.

The 11th ASEM Summit of Heads of State and Government was held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, in October 2016. At the Summit, ASEM leaders agreed to promote more sustainable global supply chains by encouraging firms to apply the ILO Tripartite Declaration of Principles concerning Multinational Enterprises and Social Policy (ILO MNE Declaration), as well as UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights.

The chair’s statement underlines the importance of international labour standards for health and safety being respected in order to ensure safe working environments for all workers, including migrant workers. It also calls for policies promoting decent work and adequate social protection for all, with a focus on women and youth. The summit additionally made a commitment to developing effective national strategies to integrate the UN Sustainable Development Goals.