Vietnam welcomes a proposal to upgrade the ASEAN-China relationship, Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son said at the ASEAN-China Foreign Ministers’ Meeting held via videoconference on August 3
as part of the 54th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM-54) and Related Meetings.
In his remarks at the event, Minister Son suggested that the two sides work to fully tap the great potential of bilateral cooperation, promote economic collaboration, facilitate trade and investment, and bolster investment in infrastructure development in the region and within sub-regional cooperation frameworks, including the Mekong-Lancang Cooperation.
He expressed a hope that China will continue to provide COVID-19 vaccines to ASEAN countries and help them improve medical response capacity.
The Vietnamese FM underlined the need for all parties to show goodwill in cooperation, take responsible actions and work together for an East Sea of peace, stability, security, safety and environmental protection.
All parties should uphold the rule of law and settle disputes and differences through peaceful measures, he stressed, affirming that Vietnam is committed to working with other ASEAN countries and China to continue to fully and effectively implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and welcomes the resumption of negotiations on a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC). Vietnam will do its best to push forward the negotiation process for the finalization of a practical, effective COC that is in accordance with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which is supported by international community, he said.
At the meeting, ASEAN and China agreed to continue to give priority to coordination in effectively controlling COVID-19 and mutual support in sustainable recovery.
ASEAN foreign ministers suggested stronger cooperation in facilitating bilateral trade and investment exchange, making full use of the ASEAN-China Free Trade Agreement (ACFTA), and hastening the ratification of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP in order to create a new driving force for growth.
Meanwhile, China proposed making sustainable development as the theme for cooperation in 2022, with focus on green growth and carbon emission reduction, while pledging to consider raising its contribution to the ASEAN-China Cooperation Fund.
Regarding regional and international issues of shared concern, participants agreed that maintaining an environment of peace, security and stability in the region, including the East Sea, is the common concern and interest of both ASEAN and China.
The ministers welcomed efforts for the early resumption of negotiations on the COC, and pledged to continue to efficiently and fully implement the DOC and promote negotiations for an effective and practical COC in line with international law, including the UNCLOS 1982.
China expressed its support of the ASEAN's role in encouraging dialogue and reconciliation in Myanmar and in helping Myanmar seek solutions to stabilize the country’s situation.
Both sides agreed to work closely to organise a summit commemorating the 30th anniversary of the ASEAN-China relations.
Following the event, Myanmar will officially take up the role as the coordinator of the ASEAN-China relations in the 2021-2024 period./.