Leaders of the 10 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) on November 22 signed the 2015 Kuala Lumpur Declaration on the Establishment of the ASEAN Community on December 31, 2015.
|Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung (middle) at the signing ceremony of the Declaration on the Establishment of the ASEAN Community __Photo: VNA
The historical signing was effected during the 27th ASEAN Summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, promising greater regional integration for the group.
Speaking at the plenary session of the 27th ASEAN Summit, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung highlighted the establishment of the ASEAN Community as an historic event reflecting the common perception and high resolution of the ASEAN member states in increasing connectivity and cooperation to a new height.
It also demonstrates the strong maturity, solidarity, and unity of the bloc after 48 years of development, he said, adding that adoption of the 2025 ASEAN Community Vision and master plans at the summit will facilitate the bloc’s broader connectivity.
Dung called on the ASEAN member countries to continually strengthen solidarity to cope with an array of challenges in and out of the bloc.
He underlined ASEAN priorities to implementing effectively the 2025 ASEAN Community Vision and master plans on separate pillars and promoting the central role of the association in handling peace, security and development challenges in the region.
The ASEAN leaders shared the view that the building of the ASEAN Community is a non-stop process so the bloc needs to continue intensifying its connectivity and bring it to the next level.
ASEAN Chairman Najib Razak said that, in practice, ASEAN countries have already done away with most tariff barriers, increased the competitiveness of ASEAN’s manufacturing industry in the global market and reduced costs for everyone.
But the notion of the ASEAN Community goes beyond economics, Najib said, adding that it is also about all of us being ASEAN, recognizing that something special binds us, and making our citizens feel that ASEAN courses through their veins.
During the 27th ASEAN Summit and related Summits, the leaders also signed the Declaration on ASEAN 2025: Forging Ahead Together, and the ASEAN Convention against Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, in addition to nearly 60 other documents signed, approved or acknowledged. -VNS/VLLF