ASEAN Enhances the Relationship with Its Partners

ASEAN Enhances the Relationship with Its Partners

The 40th and 41st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summits and related meetings, including ASEAN meetings with partners like China, the US, Japan, the Republic of Korea, India, Canada, Australia and the United Nations concluded successfully with significant outcomes within the bloc as well as with other partners, marking a fruitful year for ASEAN with the spirit: “ASEAN A.C.T.: Addressing Challenges Together”.


At the 40th ASEAN Summit, ASEAN leaders discussed the process of building the ASEAN community towards a united and resilient ASEAN community. The 41st ASEAN summit focused on the bloc’s external relations, the regional architecture, and regional and international issues of common concern, affirming the role and responsibility of ASEAN in regional and international issues. 

The summit expressed clearly the solidarity and centrality of ASEAN. In the current complicated and disordered context, all countries affirmed that ASEAN has been making efforts to overcome difficulties, maintain its cooperation momentum, and promote sustainable recovery effectively. While the world and regional economies have many gray patches, Southeast Asia is really a bright spot with a growth forecast of 5.3% in 2022. Trade resumption, economy reopening and effective implementation of free trade agreements are the priorities of all countries mentioned in the joint effort on post-pandemic recovery.

The ASEAN Community-building process continues to be the priority of the countries, receiving the support of partners in which the political-security pillar records a 98% deployment rate. The summit adopted a decision on the implementation of the five-point consensus on Myanmar and the declaration of the application of Timor-Leste for ASEAN membership. 


Trưởng đoàn các nước ASEAN và Lãnh đạo các đối tác chụp ảnh chung. Ảnh: TTXVN

The relationship with the partners also recorded concrete and substantive progress.  This is the first time that the ASEAN summits with its partners were held in person after nearly three years of the COVID-19 pandemic. The leaders of most of the countries attended the summits which showed the desire and determination of the countries to resume direct exchanges as well as their concern for ASEAN.

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh attends the 2nd ASEAN Global Dialogue. Photo: Duong Giang/VN

Notably, the leaders of the countries approved the declarations on the establishment of the ASEAN - US Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and ASEAN - India Comprehensive Strategic Partnership; agreed in principle to upgrade the strategic partnership with Canada and noted the proposal of South Korea and Japan to upgrade relations with ASEAN. Some partners also expressed their desire to organize commemorative summits with ASEAN such as the 50th anniversary of ASEAN - Japan relations in 2023 and the 50th anniversary of ASEAN - Australia ties in 2024.


ASEAN signed more than 100 documents on many important issues at the summit, including the ASEAN Leaders’ Statement on the 55th Anniversary of ASEAN, the ASEAN Leaders’ Vision Statement on “ASEAN A.C.T.: Addressing Challenges Together”, frameworks of cooperation with several partners and a Joint Statement on the 20th Anniversary of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC).

Nearly 98% of the initiatives under the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework have been implemented across all five pillars of strengthening health systems, security, economic integration, digital transformation and sustainable development. The COVID-19 ASEAN Response Fund has disbursed more than 10 million US dollars to purchase COVID-19 vaccines and will disburse seven million more US dollars to buy monkeypox vaccines.

 Kicking off the year of ASEAN 2023, Indonesian President Joko Widodo received the hammer symbolizing the ASEAN Chairmanship and announced the theme of ASEAN 2023 "ASEAN Matters: The Epicenter of Growth", targeting to build the ASEAN Community, improve the capacity and efficiency of ASEAN's activities, relations between ASEAN and its partners; strengthening solidarity as well as promoting the role and position of ASEAN in the region and the world. 


Story: VNP Photos: VNA Translated by Song An