The Heads of Civil Service Meeting themed “Modernising civil service towards a cohesive and responsive ASEAN Community” kicked off on August 5 as part of the 21st ASEAN Conference on Civil Service Matters (ACCSM 21).
In her opening remarks, Vietnamese Minister of Home Affairs Pham Thi Thanh Tra, who is also Chairwoman of ACCSM 21, emphasised the important contributions of the civil service in the ASEAN community’s adaptation process to new challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic over the past two years.
Modernising the administrative system has helped both respond to new challenges and better serve people and businesses, contributing to supporting and maintaining stable socio-economic development in the region, she said.
She expressed her hope that the important results at the meeting will contribute to shaping a professional, shared and sustainable ASEAN civil service, towards building a prosperous and sustainable ASEAN Community, thus strengthening the position of ASEAN in the world in general, and each of its member countries in particular.
Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Vu Chien Thang said the ACCSM 21 Work Plan for the 2021-2025 period is still on schedule.
After the senior officials’ meeting (SOM) and the 6th SOM 3 in the framework of ACCSM 21 held on August 3, the ASEAN Secretariat compiled a report to send to ASEAN member countries.
On behalf of the ASEAN Secretariat, Deputy Secretary-General of ASEAN Ekkaphab Phantavong briefed the participants on relevant decisions of other ASEAN meetings, including the formulation of the ASEAN Community Vision after 2025; the implementation of the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework (ACRF), the ASEAN Comprehensive Framework on Care Economy, the Consolidated Strategy on the Fourth Industrial Revolution for ASEAN; as well as ASEAN's strategic policy framework on promoting an adaptive ASEAN Community with a broader understanding, tolerance and sense of regional traditions among the peoples of ASEAN.
Within the meeting’s agenda, the officials exchanged views on the framework of ACCSM’s strategic partnership. This framework supports the role of ACCSM as a specialised body on cross-pillar issues of good governance, including anti-corruption.
They also agreed on how to expand ACCSM's cooperation with other ASEAN sectoral bodies and external agencies by using the framework as a guide.
Regarding the action plan to implement the ASEAN Declaration on strengthening their civil service to be more resilient and adaptive to new challenges, Chu Tuan Tu, head of the International Cooperation Department under the Ministry of Home Affairs, said the action plan includes initiative activities to be implemented at the national and regional levels.
Minister Tra, who is also Chairwoman of ACCSM 21, officially transferred the role of the Chair of ACCSM22 to Brunei.
In her conclusion speech, Tra said after more than two years, ministers, leaders and representatives of ASEAN member countries had a full meeting at ACCSM 21, showing their confidence and determination to cooperate for a modern civil service and a cohesive and adaptive ASEAN Community that serves the people.
She expressed her belief that the results achieved at ACCSM 21 will be further promoted and developed by Brunei in the role of the rotating chair of ACCSM 22, towards an ASEAN Community with a vision of extensive connectivity and integration, proactive adaptation, comprehensive recovery and sustainable development.- (VNA/VLLF)