Vietnam attends ASEAN Plus One Foreign Ministers’ Meetings hinh anh 1
Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son (centre). (Photo: VNA)

Participating ministers welcomed the implementation progress of action plans, and appreciated cooperation results in all fields which have contributed to inclusive recovery and sustainable development.

The partners affirmed that they attach great importance to relations with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), respect and support the bloc’s central role, assist it in building the ASEAN Community, and jointly promote dialogue, cooperation and response to common challenges, thus contributing more effectively to peace, security, stability, and sustainable development.

At the ASEAN Post Ministerial Conference with New Zealand, ministers welcomed the conclusion of negotiations to upgrade the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement to deepen economic and trade cooperation. ASEAN appreciated New Zealand's support in efforts to respond to climate change, reduce greenhouse gas emissions in agriculture and improve the capacity of the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance. The conference adopted the ASEAN - New Zealand Joint Statement on Cooperation on the ASEAN Outlook for the Indo-Pacific.

At the ASEAN Post Ministerial Conference with India, the two sides approved the Appendix to the Action Plan to implement the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, which was established at the end of 2022. They emphasised the priority to be given to enhance cooperation in maritime affairs, connectivity, digital economy, cyber security, health, the environment, and transnational crime prevention. ASEAN suggested India continue to pay attention to narrowing the development gap, and sub-regional development cooperation.

Vietnam attends ASEAN Plus One Foreign Ministers’ Meetings hinh anh 3
Delegates attend the ASEAN Post Ministerial Conference with Russia. (Photo:
The ASEAN Post Ministerial Conference with Russia unanimously adopted a Joint Statement commemorating the fifth anniversary of the ASEAN - Russia Strategic Partnership, committing to promote and deepen practical cooperation, especially in the fields that Russia has strengths and ASEAN has needs. Participating countries welcomed the progress of bilateral cooperation, especially in coordination to respond to non-traditional security challenges, and proposed implementing initiatives within the framework of the "Year of Scientific and Technical Cooperation" in 2022.

Meanwhile, at the ASEAN Post Ministerial Conference with Australia, ministers appreciated the positive progress in implementing the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, especially the Aus4ASEAN Futures Initiative with a funding of 204 million AUD (138.9 million USD). ASEAN appreciated Australia's commitments to promote two-way trade and investment, and looked forward to Australia's continued expansion of market access and business connectivity. The two sides also agreed to strengthen cooperation towards sustainable development, supported the ASEAN-Australia High-Level Dialogue on Climate Change and Energy Transition jointly chaired by Laos, Australia and Vietnam by the end of this year in Vietnam.

At the ASEAN Post Ministerial Conference with China, countries welcomed progress in negotiations to upgrade the ASEAN - China Free Trade Agreement, which reflects their commitments to building an inclusive, comprehensive, modern and rules-based economic environment. Delegates expressed their satisfaction with the progress in negotiations on the Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC). The two sides agreed to take 2024 as the year for ASEAN - China people-to-people exchanges to promote friendship, understanding and cultural connectivity between the people of the countries.

Speaking at the conferences, Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son appreciated the extensive progress in cooperation between ASEAN and its partners, suggesting the partners support the bloc's central role, maintain assistance for the ASEAN Community building, and jointly contribute to peace, security and development in the region. He proposed orientations to enhance cooperation between ASEAN and its partners, especially in the implementation of free trade agreements, investment, tourism, human resources development, infrastructure connectivity, and sub-regional cooperation, as well as expanding cooperation priorities in climate change response, energy security, food security and green growth.

Discussing the international and regional situation at the events, ASEAN countries and partners emphasised the importance of maintaining and ensuring peace, security and stability in the region, and creating favourable conditions for inclusive growth and sustainable development efforts.

The Vietnamese minister proposed the partners support ASEAN's common stance and efforts on the East Sea and other international and regional issues; and called on them to join hands with the association to increase dialogue, build trust, and solve disputes by peaceful means in accordance with international law.

He stressed the importance of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and working towards building a practical and effective COC in accordance with international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), for the sake of peace and cooperation in the East Sea./. VNA