The 53rd ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM-53) opened in Hanoi on September 9. It was held online for the first time.
The ceremony was joined by Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, ASEAN Secretary General Lim Jock Hoi, foreign ministers from ASEAN nations, Ambassadors and representatives from international organisations in Vietnam.
In his welcoming remarks, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc highlighted the development of ASEAN, which has become the world’s fifth largest economy, and its central role in dialogues, cooperation for peace, security and prosperity in the region. These achievements have been attested amid unprecedented changes and challenges, particularly in the COVID-19 pandemic.
|An overview of the AMM-53 opening ceremony__Photo: VNA|
“Cohesive and Responsive” is not only the theme of ASEAN 2020. Together with the spirit of proactivity and responsibility, it has become the brand name of ASEAN, helping the bloc cope with difficulties and challenges, he noted.
On this occasion, the PM praised the ASEAN’s efforts to help businesses resume their operation and regional people stabilize their lives. The initiatives, such as The COVID-19 response fund, the ASEAN Regional Reserve of Medical Supplies have helped the bloc fight against the COVID-19 pandemic while connecting the member nations.
The Prime Minister requested ASEAN foreign ministers give priority to successfully implementing the ASEAN Community Vision 2025; preventing and controlling the COVID-19 pandemic while promoting sustainable recovery.
Addressing the opening ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh spoke highly of the ASEAN bloc which is dynamic in action, flexible in response and creative in cooperation.
He praised the ASEAN Community, saying that with the spirit of “from vision to action”, ASEAN Community has gradually taken shape, laying the significant foundation for the ASEAN Community building process, he said.
Entering its 6th decade, ASEAN is now speeding up its Community building while maximizing its role and status in the region and actively contributing to the joint efforts for peace, stability and development of the international community.
Deputy PM Pham Binh Minh expressed his hope that in the framework of the AMM-53 and related meetings, participants will discuss specific measures to effectively implement the instructions of the ASEAN Leaders at the 36th ASEAN Summit, thus furthering regional cooperation and overcoming challenges while successfully implementing set goals and mapping out the way forward.
“We are resolved to overcome difficulties, effectively and timely achieve the targets in the ASEAN Community Vision 2025, ensure full implementation of all provisions and procedures in the ASEAN Charter, and to continue proving operational effectiveness of ASEAN’s sectoral bodies and other ASEAN-led dialogue and cooperation mechanism," he said.
Being aware that the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic is still looming, the ASEAN Coordinating Council will discuss thoroughly ways and means to effectively push forward ASEAN’s efforts and initiatives to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, he said.
The AMM 53 is one of the important highlights of Vietnam’s ASEAN chairmanship this year. The event consists of 20 meetings via video conference, joined by 27 delegations from the four continents of different time zones.
In the framework of the AMM-53, 40 documents are expected to be adopted, including the AMM-53 Joint Communique, focusing on ASEAN's commitment to promoting the ASEAN Community, economic connectivity and cooperation with dialogue partners.- (VNA/VLLF)