17/11/2017 08:45 GMT+7 Email Print Like 0

Cooperation needed to manage potential conflict in East Sea: seminar

Jakarta, November 16 (VNA) – The Indonesian Foreign Ministry and the Centre of Southeast Asian Studies opened a seminar in Indonesia on November 16, focusing discussions on managing potential conflict in the East Sea. 

The event, the 27th of its kind, drew 70 participants from Brunei, China, the Philippines, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Vietnam and Chinese Taipei. It was initiated by Indonesia with a view to bringing cooperation opportunities to concerned parties through dialogue. 

In his opening speech, Deputy Foreign Minister of Indonesia Abdurrahman Mohammad Fachir underlined his country’s viewpoint that the East Sea area must be managed through cooperation among relevant sides to ease tension. 

He added the seminar plays an important role in promoting mutual understanding among participating parties through constructive dialogues and concrete cooperation projects, while reflecting the relevant sides’ commitment to continuing discussion to pursue peace, cooperation and stability in the area. 

This informal process has considerably contributed to trust building measures to help manage potential conflict in the East Sea. This has been attained through enhancing technical cooperation in such fields as marine scientific research, marine resources protection, sea-related database exchange, training in non-traditional marine security, and research on tide and climate change impacts related to sea level rise, the official said. 

Bui Hong Long, Chairman of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of Vietnam, said Vietnam is making more and more important contributions to the process, especially via its participation in this seminar. 

Cooperation in marine science, marine security, search and rescue, and policy issues will help deal with potential conflict in the East Sea, he added. 

Deputy Foreign Minister Fachir told Vietnam News Agency that to be effective, the management of potential conflict in the East Sea must base on cooperation. 

Apart from their own projects, the relevant sides agreed to carry out eight joint projects this year. These projects will greatly contribute to efforts to help turn the East Sea into a peaceful and stable region that generates economic benefits and builds up mutual trust among regional countries, especially those with sovereignty claims in the East Sea. 

The two-day seminar included four sessions, talking the East Sea’s strategic geopolitical location and conflict risks in the region; countries’ experience; the enforcement of maritime law; tide, sea level rise and their impacts on the coastal environment in the East Sea; and mineral resources.