Tuesday, May 26 2020


ASEAN-Australia forum held online

Update: May, 19/2020 - 13:33


Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyễn Quốc Dũng, head of the ASEAN Senior Officials' Meeting (SOM) Vietnam, speaks at the 32nd ASEAN – Australia Forum, which was held in the form of an online conference on Monday. Photo baoquocte.vn

HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam will work closely with other ASEAN countries and partners, including Australia, to maintain ASEAN's activities through teleconferences, continue to actively promote orientations and priorities for co-operation set out in 2020, said Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyễn Quốc Dũng.

He made the statement at the 32nd ASEAN – Australia Forum, which was held on Monday in the form of an online conference.

In his speech, Dũng, head of the ASEAN Senior Officials' Meeting (SOM) Việt Nam, said together with efforts to cope with the disease, the country would collaborate with other partners on implementation of the Community Vision 2025, strengthen ASEAN mechanisms, develop the Mekong sub-region, and expand partnerships for peace and sustainable development.

He emphasised ASEAN's proactive and timely efforts and its close co-ordination with partners in coping with COVID-19 and minimising the socio-economic impacts caused by the pandemic.

Dũng proposed cooperation orientations between ASEAN and Australia in preventing and controlling COVID-19, ensuring support for citizens affected by the disease, minimising its impacts on socio-economic development, and preparing post-epidemic recovery and development plans.

He stressed the need to effectively utilise existing development cooperation programmes within the ASEAN-Australia co-operation framework in these efforts.

Dũng urged countries to enhance solidarity and respect for the rule of law, and build trust in order to ensure an environment of peace, safety and stability to facilitate cooperation.

As an annual meeting at the Deputy Foreign Ministerial level, the conference aimed to review the process of co-operation and discuss measures to promote the ASEAN-Australia partnership, especially their co-ordination to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Representatives from ASEAN member nations and Australia updated information related to disease prevention measures and experiences. The two sides agreed to promote sharing of information, experience and technical assistance, and help each other to improve their ability to cope with future disease outbreaks.

They pledged to support citizens affected by the pandemic, exert efforts to minimise its impacts on socio-economic development, and co-ordinate policies to prepare post-epidemic recovery plans.

Both sides affirmed their commitment to promoting their strategic partnership, especially in this difficult time, in order to overcome challenges caused by the pandemic, thus further strengthening co-operation.

They agreed to continue promoting the Plan of Action to implement the ASEAN-Australia Strategic Partnership (2020-24), emphasised their support for an open, fair, rules-based international multilateral trading system towards upgrading the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (AANZFTA) and signing the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Agreement in 2020. — VNS


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