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Fullerton Forum at 5; ASEAN at 50

ASEAN is a good model of regionalism. This will be highlighted by the Philippines as it chairs the association this year, the 50th anniversary of the organization, Philippine Secretary of National Defense Delfin Lorenzana underscored. Delivering a special address to the participants of the Fullerton Forum in Singapore on January 23, Secretary Lorenzana stressed the important role of ASEAN, the locus of regional institutions with a great numbered being centered on the Association founded in 1967. These institutions to include the ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting (ADMM) and the ADMM-Plus enable regional countries address the various challenges confronting the region.

Beyond enabling regional states deal with security challenges, ASEAN and the institutions that revolve around the association serve as a platform where major powers are engaged, thereby tempering the growing strategic competition among these great powers. 
The Secretary made a pitch for ASEAN becoming a global player, a vision encapsulated in the theme of the Philippine chairmanship: "Partnering for Change, Engaging the World". He candidly gave the reminder for the bigger regional powers not to make ASEAN a proxy for their rivalry.

The Fullerton Forum, usually held in January and first convened in 2013, serves as the Sherpa meeting for the Shangri-la Dialogue. It serves as a platform for senior defense officials to exchange views on an array of topics.