ASEAN: Introduction

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was formed in 1967 by Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand to promote political and economic cooperation and regional stability. The ASEAN Declaration in 1967, considered ASEAN’s founding document, formalized the principles of peace and cooperation to which ASEAN is dedicated. The ASEAN Charter entered into force on 15 December 2008. With the entry into force of the ASEAN Charter, ASEAN established its legal identity as an international organization and took a major step in its community-building process. The ASEAN Community is comprised of three pillars, the Political-Security Community, Economic Community, and Socio-Cultural Community.

Member Countries
Brunei Burma Cambodia
Indonesia Laos Malaysia
Philippines Singapore Thailand


U.S. Dept. of State East Asian and Pacific Affairs Regional Topics