Under the nation's flagship New Southbound Policy, the Ministry of Culture launched the Southeast Asia Advisory Committee in 2015 to coordinate exchanges with esteemed cultural professionals and leaders of their respective fields from Southeast Asia, New Zealand, and Australia. This year's events taking place in Taiwan from April 24 through 27 under the theme "Diversity ․ Inclusivity ․ Southbound" will encompass film screenings, forums, and workshops that will be open to the general public.
In addition to members of the 3rd SEA Advisory Committee, April events will also feature appearances by heavyweight directors, curators, museum directors, and other experts from Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines, New Zealand, and Australia, with the latter two nations included for the first time last year to expand upon the scope of exchanges.
Free Taipei events that are ready for public registration include a Southeast Asia-themed indie film festival on April 25 at National Chengchi University, and two cultural symposiums on April 27 at the National Taiwan Museum's Nanmen Park.
Both are day-long affairs, with the April 25 film festival offering 15 shorts and animations, and four forums addressing independent filmmaking in Laos, cultivating young filmmakers in Myanmar, and introducing the Bangkok Arts and Cultural Centre. The April 27 symposiums will explore the contemporary narratives of post-war art history and visual culture, as well as Austronesian music and cultural exchanges between Southeast Asia and Taiwan.
The Southeast Asia Advisory Committee is aimed at fostering closer, longstanding cultural ties with neighboring nations through people-oriented exchanges. Leading professionals working with culture and the arts in Taiwan and Southeast Asia are invited to meet, discuss views, and hold dialogue on subjects pertinent to the regional development of culture.
Many of the Ministry of Culture's southbound policies can be credited to Committee proposals, including the Youth Cultural Gardeners program, which facilitates bilateral exchanges among youths from Taiwan and Southeast Asia, and the opening of a Taipei branch office by global nonprofit organization Living Arts International.
Last year, the Committee also organized 7 cultural programs that saw participation from over 500 professionals and members of the general public. More information and latest event updates are available at the initiative's Facebook page.