Nov 9, 2012

Brunei - Giving people livelihood crucial: HM Sultan endorses BDF principles

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HIS Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam said the theme of this year's Bali Democracy Forum (BDF) highlighted the importance of regional security for the confidence of the people.

The forum's theme "Advancing Democratic Principles at a Global Setting", is in line with the United Nation's development goals and Organisation of Islamic Cooperation's 10-year Programme of Action, His Majesty said in a titah during the first general debate session.

"These principles share the common goal of providing people with the means to live their lives in a secure environment, with confidence in their future," His Majesty said at the Bali International Convention Centre's Nusa Indah Hall.

The monarch added: "We subscribe to these principles through our membership of international organisations, and governments strive to apply them to suit the needs and capabilities of their citizens."

However, His Majesty warned that these principles must not become points of division.

"What we need to achieve is an equitable balance between the various interests, concerns, and our responsibility within our respective communities," His Majesty said.

The region's challenge, His Majesty said, was to interpret the global nature of these principles so that they made practical sense to the region's people and were relevant to their day-to-day lives.

"This, I feel is the reason why we are gathered here today and I look forward to hearing the further views of my colleagues," His Majesty said.

In the titah, the monarch also thanked Indonesian President Dato Seri Laila Utama Dr Hj Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono for inviting him to the forum.

His Majesty said it was "remarkable" how much the forum had grown in just a few years.

"When this forum started four years ago, we had little idea it would attract such interest. The fact that this gathering is now a recognised event in the regional calendar is a tribute to Your Excellency's relentless efforts to promote greater international understanding," His Majesty said.

"The people of Brunei join me in congratulating Indonesia most warmly on this achievement."

The Brunei forum saw two general debates yesterday, co-chaired by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Korean President Lee Myun-bak, and presided over by Yudhoyono.

Yesterday evening, His Majesty also attended the forum's gala dinner, hosted by the Indonesian President.

His Majesty has attended all five forums in Bali.

The Brunei Times

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