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ASEAN members review process of IAI projects

The 59th meeting of the Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI) Task Force and the 9th Consultation Meeting of the IAI Task Force and ASEAN Partners took place in Jakarta, Indonesia from October 3-4.

The Vietnamese delegation to the events was led by Ambassador Tran Duc Binh, head of the Vietnamese mission to the ASEAN.

The 59th IAI Task Force Meeting is a regular event gathering permanent representatives from ASEAN countries to review the implementation of IAI projects and seek measures to further enhance the efficiency of the IAI Work Plan in the third phase in the 2016-2020 period (IAI Work Plan III).

So far, after three years of implementation, 19 out of 26 actions of the plan have been conducted across all five strategic areas of Food and Agriculture; Trade Facilitation; Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs); Education; and Health and Well-Being.

Currently, 101 projects are underway with total value of 25.96 million USD. India, Germany, the EU and Japan are the leading sponsors among ASEAN’s partners.

In the time ahead, the IAI Task Force plans to continue speeding up the project and soon launch 14 proposals which are being designed.

At the 9th Consultation Meeting of the IAI Task Force and ASEAN Partners, the IAI Task Force briefed the partners of the implementation of the IAI Work Plan III.

The prtners including Australia, Canada, China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, India, the US, and Switzerland lauded the outcomes of the IAI Work Plan III and gave a number of recommendations for the plan’s implementation, as well as the building of the fourth phase of the plan.

At the meeting, ASEAN partners reaffirmed their commitments to support projects within the IAI framework, while stressing the significance of the initiative in narrowing the development gap among ASEAN countries and enhancing regional integration.

The IAI was launched in 2000, aiming to help ASEAN’s newer member states implement ASEAN commitments and agreements. Through special assistance to Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam (CLMV countries), it aims to further regional integration in order to narrow the development gap within ASEAN.

The IAI has so far seen the adoption of two work plans. Work Plan I, from 2002 to 2008, comprised 232 projects in four areas. Work Plan II began in 2009, and includes 182 actions aligned with the three ASEAN Community Blueprints 2015.

IAI Work Plan III has been developed in close collaboration with CLMV countries, other ASEAN Member States and stakeholders, and is aligned with the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 and the various sectoral work plans./