Indonesia and Malaysia propose their national language(s) as ASEAN's official

The Indonesia-Malaysia Round Table Conference has proposed that the Malay-based national languages of Indonesia and Malaysia (Bahasa) be designated the official language of ASEAN.

Currently English is acknowledged as the "working language" of ASEAN, reflecting the English-speaking colonial past of four of the six founders of the association. However, more than one-third of the population of ASEAN's now 10-member countries speak Bahasa.

The Round Table Conference, held in the Malaysian capital,  Kuala Lumpur, on 25-28 July, was sponsored by the Foreign Policy Study Group (FPSG Malaysia), the Eminent Persons Group (EPG Indonesia), the Indonesian Council on World Affairs (ICWA) and the International Study Institute/FISIP of Syarif Hidayatullah UIN, Indonesia's major newspaper, Kompas, reported in English.

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