EU’s ASEAN Envoy Returns to Cambodia Birthplace

EU Ambassador to ASEAN Sujiro Seam (L) speaks at t a lecture on ‘Advancing the EU-ASEAN Strategic Partnership’ on Apr. 9. Photo: Cambodian Center for Regional Studies

PHNOM PENH – EU Ambassador to ASEAN Sujiro Seam has expressed his joy on his first visit to Cambodia since he and his family fled the Khmer Rouge 50 years ago.

“My first trip to Cambodia is special, because this is where I was born,” he wrote on X.

He spoke at a lecture on ‘Advancing the EU-ASEAN Strategic Partnership’ on Apr. 9 at which he commended Cambodia’s role in fostering ASEAN-EU relations. 

He pointed to the invitation of the President of the European Council to attend the East Asian summit in 2022 when Cambodia chaired the ASEAN summit and commemorative summit marking the 25th anniversary of EU-ASEAN relations.

“It was an extremely successful year for the strategic partnership between the European Union and ASEAN,” he said.

“All bilateral contacts I have had so far in Phnom Penh with government officials point to the direction that Cambodia would remain very much engaged in support of the strategic partnership between the European Union and ASEAN.”

Sujiro Seam was born in Phnom Penh and grew up in France.

He was educated at Paris Business School, then the Institute of Political Science and National School of Administration. 

In 1998, he became a member of the legal affairs directorate at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He worked as expert at the Directorate-General for Trade of the EU Commission in Belgium in 2001.

He later worked as counsellor at the Permanent Representation of France to the EU in Brussels in 2004, assistant director for food security and economic development at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2009, deputy then acting director for Development and Global Public Goods in 2011.

Sujiro Seam was posted to the Consulate General of France in the US city of Houston in 2013. 

In 2017, he became French Ambassador to Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Tonga and Tuvalu. He was appointed as European Ambassador to the Pacific nations in 2019.

He has served as EU Ambassador to ASEAN in residence in Jakarta since 2023 and is married with two children.

Thien Phearin contributed to the story.

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