15 December 2021, Brasilia – Philippine Ambassador-designate Mario F. Chan called on Indonesian Ambassador Edi Yusup at the Indonesian Embassy in Brasilia on 14 December 2021, together with Philippine Embassy Minister Leilani Feliciano and First Secretary/Consul General Joselito Chad Jacinto.
The Ambassadors fondly shared experiences of traveling the distances from each of their homelands in Southeast Asia to Brazil, as well as the personal adaptations they undertook as diplomats arriving in a foreign country. The neighborly bonds between the Philippines and Indonesia as ASEAN member countries reassured both Ambassadors that they will develop a unique camaraderie with each other during their tour-of-duty in Brazil.
Both Heads of Missions discussed the pandemic’s effects on Brazil, each expressing hope of a better situation in the near future.
Ambassador Edi Yusup shared with Ambassador Chan – a retired Philippine Army Major General -- the active cooperation in defense matters between Indonesia and Brazil, as well as with neighboring countries. The Indonesian Ambassador mentioned frequent collaborative exchanges by Indonesia, Brazil and other countries in the defense sector, bolstering the impetus of Ambassador Chan for the Philippines to have its own Defense Attaché servicing the Latin American region.
On 15 December 2021, Ambassador Chan called on Myanmar Ambassador Myo Tint and Thai Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Sumatthana Junnarat at their respective Chanceries in Brasilia.
The Myanmar Ambassador – a former fellow of the active uniformed service of his country, like Ambassador Chan – shared his Embassy’s engagements with Brazil in the areas of aviation and defense cooperation, including the latest procurement of an Embraer aircraft from Brazil for commercial use.
Thailand, on the other hand, with a handful of nearly one hundred nationals in Brazil (compared to nearly 1,400 Filipino expats), has a Defense Attaché in Brasilia and a Trade Counsellor in Sao Paulo to pursue Thailand’s interests in those sectors.
ASEAN has a strong representation in Brazil, with seven out of ten ASEAN countries having Embassies in the capital. These ASEAN countries are Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam – all of whom work together under an ASEAN umbrella of unity in diversity through the ASEAN Committee in Brasilia (ACB). END