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ASEAN, UK launch dialogue partnership

ASEAN, UK launch dialogue partnership The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the United Kingdom convened the inaugural ASEAN-UK Joint Cooperation Committee (AUKJCC) Meeting via videoconference on June 24, marking the start of a formal partnership to strengthen their long-standing ties.

The ASEAN Foreign Ministers conferred the status of Dialogue Partner on the UK at the 54th ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting on August 2, 2021. With this formalisation, the AUKJCC, which comprises the Committee of Permanent Representatives to ASEAN, the Ambassador of the UK to ASEAN and the ASEAN Secretariat, will provide the direction and oversee all aspects of the Dialogue Partnership.

At the meeting, officials from both sides exchanged views on the recent developments in ASEAN and the UK, including efforts to address the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as on regional and international issues.

Both sides also deliberated on ways to deepen the ASEAN-UK cooperation in areas such as maritime security and maritime law; transnational crime; cybersecurity; financial services; digitalisation; Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs); climate change and environment; energy; sustainable economic growth; education; health; women, peace and security; science, technology and innovation; youth; culture; tourism; people-to-people linkages; ASEAN Connectivity initiatives; and the Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI).

The meeting adopted the Terms of Reference of the AUKJCC, and noted the ongoing negotiations on a Plan of Action (PoA) to Implement the ASEAN-United Kingdom Dialogue Partnership for the period of 2022-2026, which will serve as a practical guide to further substantiate the Dialogue Partnership with a focus on areas of mutual interest, aligned with the ASEAN Community Vision 2025./.