Supporting Local Governments dialogue with regional institutions in South-east Asia, Phnom Penh (Cambodia), 3-4 May


Representatives of local governments from eight ASEAN countries came together on the 3rd and 4th of May in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, in the framework of “the Regional conference on Strengthening decentralization and local governance in ASEAN countries through a Multi- Stakeholder Approach”.

The conference was organized by UCLG-ASPAC, in the framework of the UCLG project ‘Supporting Decentralisation in Developing Countries’ and in collaboration with ‘Partnership for Democratic Local Governance in Southeast Asia (DELGOSEA)’, both projects co-financed by the European Commission. The initiative brought together 70 participants from national and local government, international organizations and CSOs to discuss the regional recommendations to strengthen decentralization and local government across the region. Special areas of focus over the two day conference were Good local governance for better Disaster Risk Management, Financing Urban Economic and Infrastructure Development and Strengthening Cooperation between Local Governments and Civil Society.

H.E. Mr Sak Setha, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Interior of the Royal Government of Cambodia and Mr Bagas Hapsoro, Deputy Secretary-General of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretariat stressed in the opening the need to work together to increase participation and include populations in decision making processes. They committed to continue the process of dialogue between local governments and the ASEAN, in the framework on ongoing integration within the South East Asian region.

Mr Andreas Röttger, Head of Regional Cooperation from the European Commission for Indonesia, Brunei Darussalam and ASEAN, welcomed the organization of this open dialogue as an opportunity to raise awareness about local governance issues in building and strengthening democracy. He said, “This is a timely initiative of local authorities to show that regional integration is not only a matter for the capitals. Indeed, effective local authorities and a vibrant local civil society are key drivers for development, prosperity and stability across the region.”

The conference ended with the adoption of the “Phnom Penh Record of Principals” calling on National and Local Governments and broader civil society to establish an ongoing forum in the framework of the ASEAN to address existing and emerging issues affecting local communities across the region.

Final principles

Final Declaration