Backgrounder: East Asia Summit
NAY PYI TAW - The East Asia Summit (EAS) opened here on Thursday, following an Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit in the Myanmar capital of Nay Pyi Taw.
The EAS drew leaders from 18 countries, including 10 ASEAN member states and six dialogue partners - China, Japan, South Korea, India, Australia and New Zealand as well as the United States and Russia as new comers.
Since its inception in 2005, the EAS has served as a forum for dialogue on broad strategic issues of relevance to East Asia as well as other regional and global issues, with the focus on areas such as international terrorism, energy, infectious diseases, sustainable development and poverty reduction.
The historic decision for the ASEAN to host the first EAS was reached at the ASEAN Plus Three (China, Japan and South Korea) Summit in November 2004.
The first EAS was inaugurated on Dec. 14, 2005 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Leaders signed the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on the East Asia Summit.
At the second EAS in January 2007 in Cebu, the Philippines, leaders signed Cebu Declaration on East Asian Energy Security.
The third EAS was held in November of 2007 in Singapore. Leaders at the summit adopted the Singapore Declaration on Climate Change, Energy and the Environment. At the fourth EAS in October 2009 in Hua Hin, Thailand, leaders adopted the Cha-am Hua Hin Statement on EAS Disaster Management.
The Fifth EAS was chaired by Vietnam in October 2010. The participants issued a Chairman's Statement called the Hanoi Declaration commemorating the fifth anniversary of the EAS.
At the Sixth EAS in November 2011 in the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh, the leaders adopted the Declaration of the EAS on the Principles for Mutually Beneficial Relations and the Declaration of the 6th EAS on ASEAN Connectivity.
The seventh EAS adopted the Phnom Penh Declaration in November 2012, pledging to help narrow development gap among ASEAN member states so as to achieve the ASEAN Community by the end of 2015.
Leaders of ASEAN countries and dialogue partners adopted a Declaration on Food Security at the eighth EAS in the Bruneian capital of Bandar Seri Begawan in October 2013, pledging to increase cooperation to strengthen food and energy security.
At present, the EAS has formed regular ministerial meeting mechanisms in prioritized areas including economy, trade, energy and environment.