Alfano in visit to three ASEAN nations

Alfano in visit to three ASEAN nations

Italy's foreign minister Angelino Alfano on Wednesday began a three-day visit to ASEAN members Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand that is aimed at boosting economic and political ties.

The diplomatic mission is due to begin in Indonesia's capital, Jakarta, where Alfano will meet his indonesian counterpart, Retno Marsudi. The two ministers will give a press conference after their meeting, the Italian foreign ministry said.

Alfano was later on Wednesday due to visit Association of Southeast Asian Nations headquarters and hold a meeting with ASEAN's new secretary general, Lim Jock Hoi. It will be the Brunei diplomat's first meeting with a minister from a European Union country since he took office at the beginning of the year, the ministry stated.

Alfano will end his one-day visit to Jakarta with a meeting with members of the Italian and Indonesian business communities at the Italian ambassador's residence, the ministry said.

The trip will continue in Singapore on Thursday, where Alfano will meet foreign minister Vivian Balakrishnan, minister of commerce Lim Hng Kiang and managers of two of the country's sovereign funds: the government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) and Temasek Holding.

Alfano will meet the president of Singapore's Economic Development Board, Beh Swan Gin, before ending his stop in the prosperous city state with a meeting with the Italian business and academic communities.

On Friday, Alfano will meet representatives of the Italian-Thai Business Forum at the ambassador’s residence in the Thai capital, Bangkok, and will also meet with the presidents of the Italian-Thai Chamber of Commerce and the Dante Alighieri Society.

After meeting local representatives of the Italian press, Alfano will hold a meeting with Thai foreign minister Don Pramudwinai.

Alfano will wrap up his Asian trip with a meeting with Thai premier Prayuth Chan-O-Cha, the foreign ministry stated.