Youths of today are leaders of tomorrow. This is the main vision of Youth Invitation Program for the 21st Century which started from 1984 with the initiative of the Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone in order to further consolidate the friendly relations between Japan and the ASEAN countries, and strengthen mutual understanding as well as to promote personal relations of friendship and trust among people.
The ex-participants have become true leaders. Today, some of them are in the top position in both public sector and private sector. In the public sector, ex-participants are as a parliament members, ministers, governors, head of region and so on. Ex-participants of Youth Invitation Program and Young Leaders Training Program are regarded as valuable asset for building future partnership of ASEAN and Japan. The ex-participants are now driving power of rapidly growing countries. They are now playing a great role in each country to build the nation. They made significant contribution to social, cultural and economic development in ASEAN countries. Total number of ex-participants in ASEAN countries amounts to more than 22,000 members from 10 countries which involved in the alumni association. PERTAB-21, BRUNEI DARUSSALAM;JAC, CAMBODIA; KAPPIJA-21, INDONESIA;LAYCFP, LAO PDR;PAMAJA, MALAYSIA;JAAM, MYANMAR;JAAP, PHILIPPINES;SAJAFA-21, SINGAPORE; FYAA, THAILAND; and VACYF, VIETNAM.
ASEAN-Japan Alumni Association for the 21st Century (AJAFA-21) as an umbrella alumni association has a significant and strategic role to foster closer relationship among ASEAN countries and Japan, especially in the areas of culture, education and social activities. Furthermore, AJAFA-21 should take a part in the issue of ASEAN integration. It will transform ASEAN into a region with free movement of goods, services, investment, skilled labour, and free flow of capital.
AJAFA-21 needs to be introduced and strengthened its role ("Recognition AJAFA-21") as a forum for diplomacy of friendship and peace as well as a forum for humanitarian and development.Members of AJAFA-21 has a strategic role in building a world civilization. They must have a strong commitment to contribute to the development of human resources in order to strengthen friendly relations between Japan and ASEAN countries. AJAFA-21 should be a large organization because it has a lot of members and has an extensive network. Therefore, AJAFA-21 should be strong institution and be able to build cooperation and synergy with all stakeholders: government, private sector, civil society organizations, universities and other institutions