The Foreign Service Institute (FSI) hosted five officials from the Strategic Studies and Training Department of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs (MFA) of the Union of Myanmar in a week-long institutional support program on Establishing a Foreign Service Academy for Myanmar on 3 to 7 October 2016. Director-General Myin Thu, who concurrently serves as Senior ASEAN Officials (SOM) Leader for Myanmar, was accompanied by his Deputies, Sandar Tin and Zaw Phyo Win; and two junior officers, May Myo Khaing and Lwin Lwin Moe.
Ambassador Claro S. Cristobal, Director-General of the FSI, welcomed the delegation and encouraged fruitful exchange between the FSI and the MFA. Assistant Secretary Millicent Cruz-Paredes of the Office of Asian and Pacific Affairs (ASPAC) of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) formally opened the program highlighting the strengthening of ties and deepening of trust between the two countries.
FSI Deputy Director-General Julio S. Amador III later took the floor to discuss the legal and historical foundations of FSI and provided an overview of its structure, operations, and mandate as the research and training arm of DFA. Director-General Myint Thu and his colleagues were received by Undersecretary Linglingay F. Lacanlale of the Office of the Undersecretary for Administration in a courtesy call.
In addition to an interactive workshop on setting up an organization facilitated by Dr. Ma. Oliva Z. Domingo, the delegation participated in a series of briefings on Diplomatic Training and Foreign Policy Research with the Carlos P. Romulo School of Diplomacy (CPRSD) and the Center for International Relations and Strategic Studies (CIRSS), respectively. CIRSS organized a Mabini Dialogue on Myanmar’s Foreign Policy with Director-General Myint Thu as guest speaker. To observe the ongoing Foreign Service Officers’ Cadetship Course, the guests were ushered to the Cultural Center of the Philippines to witness newly-commissioned officers present and defend their Cultural Diplomacy plans.
The institutional support program is organized in partnership with the DFA as part of a roster of activities under the Development Cooperation Program Agreement signed between ASPAC and the FSI.