|Vietnamese Minister of National Resources and Environment Trần Hồng Hà at the 8th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Minerals on Friday. Photo monre.gov.vn|
HÀ NỘI — The 8th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Minerals (AMMin 8) opened in the form of teleconference in Hà Nội on Friday, highlighting the urgency of developing the circular, low carbon economy and reducing the use of fossil fuels.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Vietnamese Minister of National Resources and Environment Trần Hồng Hà said mineral resources have contributed to socio-economic development for a long time. However, the over-exploitation and unsustainable use of precious resources have changed the landscape of the earth, leading to serious challenges including environmental pollution, ecological collapse and climate crisis.
He said this is an opportunity for ASEAN’s mineral industry to transform its development path, focusing on mining and processing technology, and increasing values in line with such global trends as developing the circular, low carbon economy as well as reducing the use of fossil fuels.
"Towards the common goal of building a sustainable mineral industry, contributing to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals, and addressing the challenges facing the global community, the ASEAN Community needs to strengthen cooperation and coordination,” he said.
“As an active and responsible member of the ASEAN Community, Việt Nam is ready to cooperate with other countries and partners to share scientific knowledge on minerals and new technologies in order to find new strategic minerals while creating structures with long-term values such as museums and geoparks," the minister said.
Cambodian Minister of Mines and Energy Suy Sem said the ASEAN Minerals Cooperation Action Plan (AMCAP-III) Phase 2 (2021-2025) focuses on investing at all stages of the mineral value chain towards sustainable mineral development in the region.
He suggested the bloc implement a regional capacity-building programme in mineral cooperation based on five main themes: estimation of reserve and resources, added value of minerals, green technology in mining as well as management of mine environment and mine recovery.
AMCAP III phase 2 needs to effectively apply the Minerals Information and Database (MID) in the ASOOM +3 platform to promote technical information exchange, experience sharing of the best practices in ASEAN Minerals Database and Information System development, scientific research, technology and geoscience development along with sustainable development of mineral resources.
They also shared the key results completed by the ASEAN Senior Officials Meeting on Minerals (ASOMM) and the working group in 2020 and 2021 including the progress of cooperation with partners while recognising the importance of promoting stakeholders’ engagement in supporting the development of policies, objectives, principles and practices of sustainable mineral exploitation in ASEAN.
The representatives from ASEAN countries also issued a brief policy statement which entailed national priorities and interests for the development of the mining industry and adopted "Key recommendations on regional cooperation in minerals to respond to opportunities and requirements of a mineral-intensive future”.
The delegates also noted that the adoption of the ASEAN Agenda statement on mining will promote the implementation of comprehensive ASEAN mining cooperation towards a prosperous, green and sustainable ASEAN community and actively contribute to current global initiatives as well as enhance ASEAN's position in the world and the future of each member.
The ministers also discussed solutions and priority tasks for ASEAN 2021 and the development of the ASEAN Community, connectivity issues.
They also approved the ASEAN Minerals Cooperation Action Plan (AMCAP-III) phase 2: 2021-2025.
The AMMin 8 and related meetings were held via teleconference from Wednesday to Friday. The related meetings were the 21st Annual Senior Officials Meeting on Minerals (ASOMM 21) and the 14th ASOMM+3 Meeting.
The ASOMM offers a forum for ASEAN ministers to discuss measures to strengthen cooperation in mining within the ten-member grouping, specifically support for industrialisation programmes in each member country. — VNS