Membership in the ASEAN Ladies Circle (ALC) in The Hague is open to female diplomats, wives of diplomats and female staff members of the ASEAN embassies in The Hague. The ALC also has, as associate members, some ASEAN nationals in The Hague from the non -diplomatic circle. The circle meets around four times each year.
“Mrs. Gina Ledda is wearing a traditional Filipino mestiza dress made of hand-embroidered piña (pineapple fiber).”
ASEAN, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, is a political and economic organization comprising ten countries located in Southeast Asia. Its member states are Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Five of these nations have an embassy in The Hague (Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand). The remaining five countries have a Benelux mission located in Brussels. Like member states of the EU, ASEAN missions fly two flags: their national flag and the ASEAN flag.
ASEAN member states have made steady progress in building an ASEAN Community set upon the three pillars of political and security cooperation, economic cooperation, and socio-cultural cooperation. The ASEAN is moving towards greater regional economic integration characterized by free movement of goods, services, investment, skilled labor and freer capital flow.
Mrs. Gina Ledda is the current president of the ASEAN Ladies Circle in The Hague, having been elected to the role immediately after arriving in the Netherlands in March this year. Mrs. Ledda met Roy Lie A. Tjam of the Diplomat Magazine on a sunny afternoon in July to discuss the ALC’s future.
Mrs. Ledda is well-qualified for the role. She is an economist who has participated in ASEAN-wide projects. She also has a degree in Communications, having studied in Spain, and is a professional journalist. Her other role in the city is that of spouse to His Excellency Mr. Jamie Victor B. Ledda, Ambassador of the Philippines to the Netherlands.
As the new president, Mrs. Ledda intends to actively promote camaraderie and friendship among the ladies of the ASEAN embassies in The Hague. She also hopes that through a more active ALC, the richness of ASEAN culture and economic potential could be further promoted in the Netherlands. She believes the key will be to harness the collective efforts of the ladies of the ALC and reach out to the local and international circles in The Hague, thereby building lasting linkages and friendships.
The ASEAN Ladies Circle is a great asset to the diplomatic community in The Hague.
We have already enjoyed a glimpse of the prospective events at the first Colors and Flavors of ASEAN in The Hague, a well-received cultural show which was held last April 2014. We look forward to the future work of the ASEAN Ladies Circle with great excitement.