On the occasion of the last ASEM Summit in Laos in 2012, leaders and government representatives from Asian and European countries reaffirmed their commitment to promote sustainable development, believing that responsible progress is the outcome of economic growth coupled with social inclusion and environmental protection. To achieve and further the cause of sustainable development official participants at the ASEM Summit underlined the importance of pursuing the future set of UN Sustainable Development Goals through a transparent and genuinely inclusive inter-governmental process.

In light of the outcome of the 2012 ASEM Summit, The Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) through its Asia-Europe Environmental Forum (ENVforum- now celebrating its ten- year anniversary) sought to contribute its own expertize and input for the formulation of the next Sustainable Development Goals.

Therefore the ENVforum, in collaboration with the French Regional Delegation for Cooperation with South-East Asia had conducted on 2 – 4 September 2013 a ‘Workshop on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for ASEAN Member-States’ at the premises of the ASEAN Secretariat in Jakarta, Indonesia.

The three-day-training gathered 20 officials from ASEAN countries and aimed at contributing to the ASEAN post-2015 development agenda setting process as outlined by the Rio+20 Conference in July 2012. The participants took part in a negotiation simulation and were assigned the task of envisioning a possible set of SDGs, complete with relevant targets and indicators that could ensure monitoring of implementation progress.

The negotiation simulation was conducted by the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), with the support of two eminent experts:  Prof. Laszlo PINTER, from the Central European University (CEU) and Mr Simon OLSEN, from the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES). The training equipped participants with practical information about the international and regional processes relating to the Post-2015 development agenda. Additionally, it encouraged participants to acquaint themselves with data and statistics, in order to gain a genuine understanding of ASEAN countries’ specific contexts and realities regarding various aspects of development. The simulation familiarized participants with the challenges they were likely to encounter in real-life SDGs negotiations and were encouraged to prioritize and allocate appropriate resources through consensus and critical understanding of issues.

ASEF is proud to have had the opportunity to yield a concrete contribution to the formulation process of the future world Post-2015 Development Agenda and would like to thank its partner institutions for the successful outcome of the training.

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