Source: Socialist Republic of Vietnam
Participants spoke highly of preparations by Vietnam, as ASEAN Chair in 2020, for key events in the bloc this year. They also basically agreed on activities, agenda items, and documents to be submitted to leaders at upcoming meetings.
They expressed satisfaction that the initiatives and priorities for 2020 have been carried out well and on schedule despite the difficulties posed by COVID-19.
Outstanding initiatives include the mid-term review of the implementation of blueprints for the ASEAN Community Vision 2025, building the Hanoi Declaration on a post-2025 ASEAN Vision, reviewing the implementation of the ASEAN Charter, and promoting sub-regional cooperation for narrowing development gaps and promoting sustainable development, according to officials.
Regarding ASEAN’s external relations, they appreciated the contributions of partners in 2020 and during the ASEAN Community building process.
Member countries held that the principles and criteria set up by ASEAN in fundamental documents like the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC) and the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific should continue to be upheld and applied widely.
On this basis, they agreed on proposals of Cuba, Colombia and South Africa on joining TAC.
Speaking at the meeting, Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Quoc Dung thanked other member countries for their active coordination in preparing for the 37th ASEAN Summit and related meetings.
He greatly valued their contributions to promoting the initiatives and priorities for 2020, stressing that these have truly become shared outcomes of the bloc.
The deputy minister affirmed that Vietnam will do its utmost to successfully organise the 37th ASEAN Summit and related meetings – the most important events in the bloc this year.