HA NOI (VNS)— Officials from East Asia and Latin America passed a declaration showing commitment to sustainable development yesterday, ahead of a major East Asia-Latin American forum (FEALAC) meeting in Bali, Indonesia next week.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh said East Asian and Latin American countries were at a critical juncture.
"Our two regions are expected to contribute up to 66 per cent of the global economic growth in 2013," Minh said. "We can't be complacent with our achievements, since the global crisis showed that some of the growth models used in the past are no longer applicable."
Established in 1999, FEALAC now has 36 member countries – representing 40 per cent of the world's population and 33 per cent of the world's GDP.
It's also the only forum bridging the two regions, which have experienced stable and even robust economic growth during the last few years, despite the global economic downturn in many parts of the world.
"We are without a doubt the fastest growing regions in the world," said Lourdes Puma, head of the Ecuador delegation and head of FEALAC's economy and society working group.
"But there are many traditional and non-traditional security threats such as poverty and hunger, climate change and energy and food crises that we have to resolve."
Kensuke Tanaka, head of the Asia Desk for the OECD Development Centre, said countries must embark on structural policies to enhance productivity, such as investment in human capital and infrastructure and tax reform.
The FEALAC forum in Bali will be co-hosted by Indonesia and Colombia. — VNS