Next year will be a landmark in the development of the ASEAN bloc as it celebrates its golden jubilee and 10th anniversary of the ASEAN Charter, Vietnamese officials said.
The common view emerged at a meeting held on December 14 in Hanoi to review ASEAN cooperation in 2016 and set orientations for coming years.
The meeting was attended by representatives of over 20 ministries and sectors.
Next year will be a landmark in the development of the ASEAN bloc__Photo: Internet
The delegates also agreed that complicated and unpredictable changes in the region and the world posed challenges to the solidarity, unification and central role of ASEAN, requiring the bloc to bring in new vitality for development of the ASEAN Community.
There was consensus that Vietnam should continue to be active, responsible and take initiatives to reinforce ASEAN cooperation.
Towards this, the country should further enhance implementation of programs and plans for building the ASEAN Community, and work out priorities for the Philippines’s ASEAN Chairmanship next year, the meeting decided.
Building a people-oriented and people-centered ASEAN Community through continued strengthening of the rights of women, children and migrant laborers, facilitating the progress of youth, fostering comprehensive growth by assisting small- and medium-sized enterprises, and reducing the cost of doing business were identified as priorities.
Vietnam should step up efforts for full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and early finalization of a Code of Conduct (COC) in the waters, delegates said.
The country should also contribute to developing ASEAN diplomatic relations in a more intensive and practical manner by continuing its role as coordinating country for ASEAN-India relations, and successfully hosting the meeting to mark the 25th anniversary of ASEAN-India ties, they added.
The meeting also decided that efforts will be made to improve performance of cooperation mechanisms within the ASEAN framework and between the bloc and its partners.
Delegates underscored the significance of 2016 as the first year after the formation of the ASEAN Community and the importance of realizing the ASEAN Community Vision 2025.
The meeting noted that ASEAN has promoted the compilation and ratification of action plans and work plans from 2016-20; worked on building a master plan for ASEAN Connectivity; and furthered implementation of the third-phase of the Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI). The IAI seeks to assist Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam countries.
Operational effectiveness of ASEAN departments and ASEAN Secretariat has been enhanced, delegates noted.
In 2016, Vietnam completed its commitments and made efficient contributions to all cooperation areas within ASEAN, as demonstrated by implementation plans drawn up by various ministries and sectors to realize the ASEAN Community Vision 2025.
Vietnam was also proactive in reinforcing the solidarity, unification and central role of ASEAN as it dealt with major challenges in the region, especially the East Sea.- (VNS/VLLF)