ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN) was established by the ASEAN Member States (AMS) at the 32nd ASEAN Summit in April 2018 as a cooperative platform towards the common goal of smart and sustainable urban development through digital technology and innovation. The ASCN aims to synergize development efforts, share best practices, catalyze opportunities for sustainable development, and build capacity. The ASCN meeting was inaugurated by Singapore in 2018 and was planned to meet annually to discuss progress on each city’s action plan, launch new projects, and explore new opportunities with ASEAN’s external partners.

Thailand’s Press Statement on
The ASEAN Smart Cities Network Annual Meeting 2019

On August 23rd, 2019, Thailand hosted the ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN) Annual Meeting in Bangkok, bringing together the National Representatives and Chief Smart City Officers from the 26 ASCN cities in ten ASEAN Member States, as well as the ASEAN Secretariat. The Meeting deepened cooperation to promote the development of smart and sustainable cities in ASEAN, as part of the process of building a people-oriented and people-centred ASEAN Community that leaves no one behind and looks to the future. The Meeting adopted the ASCN Terms of Reference to be submitted for notation by the ASEAN Leaders at the 35th ASEAN Summit in November this year. The Meeting also discussed the development of a Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) framework and modalities for engagement with external partners. Progress in the development of the ASCN will be reported to the 35th ASEAN Summit to be convened in Bangkok at the end of the year.

The ASCN attaches importance to dialogue, interaction and cooperation with external partners, recognizing the mutual benefits that can be gained from the sharing of best practices on the development of smart and sustainable cities as drivers of sustained growth and sustainable development. In this connection, G20 countries were invited to participate at this ASCN, following on the initiative proposed by the Prime Minister of Thailand at the G20 Summit in Osaka in June. The participation of G20 representatives helped enrich the dialogue, focusing on how smart solutions could be utilised to address challenges of rapid urbanization, promote enhanced connectivity, including digital connectivity, through the “connecting the connectivities” approach. This interaction between the ASCN and external partners, in particular the G20, will also help promote cooperation in areas such as connectivity and sustainable development, which are key priority areas identified in the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP) which was adopted by the ASEAN Leaders at the 34th ASEAN Summit in Bangkok in June 2019. The ASCN and its engagement with external partners will continue to be an important catalyst for stability, progress and prosperity in the region and beyond.

We look forward to Vietnam’s Chairmanship of the ASCN in 2020.