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The 9th Hitachi Young Leaders Initiative (HYLI) took place for the first time in Indonesia this year, the year that also marks the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Indonesia and Japan.
Between the novelty of Jakarta and the history of the bilateral relationship, the 9th HYLI offered to all the participants new experiences, insights, and understanding of the conditions in the largest member of ASEAN.
The HYLI forum was an opportunity for bright young students selected from prestigious universities in Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Japan, and the host country, Indonesia, to share ideas and experiences with other students, experts and leaders while giving the students the chance to develop their leadership skills in a non-academic environment. The forum was also an opportunity for very impressive university students to represent their countries as well as interact with their counterparts from various ASEAN nations and Japan.
Drawing on the theme of Strengthening Asian Partnerships - Economic Integration and Energy Management, the 9th HYLI forum gave 28 potential leaders a chance to examine different perspectives on economic growth and energy management as they relate to the environment. The main theme was divided into two specific sub-themes that encouraged further discussion: Formulating an East Asian Economic Community – Challenges and Opportunities and Energy Management for Economic Growth and Environmental Sustainability in East Asia. The young leaders also exchanged views on the two sub-themes with prominent speakers, representing government, business and academia, who are recognized as leaders of today's Asia.
Through intensive workshop sessions with expert moderators, the teams of young leaders developed key recommendations that addressed the issues presented by the sub-themes. These recommendations, which were also presented to domestic and regional journalists, are included for your reference.
As the forum's theme is timely and relevant to ASEAN and Japan, which had just hosted the G8 Summit that also focused on environmental issues, I was really impressed by the young leaders' responses concerning these current issues, not only when they related them to the conditions in their countries, but also when they applied them to the wider ASEAN context. They showed a firm dedication to move towards one important goal: a better Asia.
We were also fortunate to have, among the prominent speakers from the energy and environment sectors, two current ministers from the government of Indonesia. I hope that the young leaders have been inspired by the opportunity to interact with these government leaders as the students develop their own styles and approaches to solving critical issues facing society.
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all of the many people who contributed their thinking, support, and time to achieve a very successful 9th Hitachi Young Leaders Initiative. This HYLI has come to a close, but I hope that the ideas and the friendships realized will be cherished for a long time to come.
Vice President and Executive Officer