Asia-Europe cooperation looks towards new development stage: Deputy FM

Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Hieu recently wrote an article titled “Asia-Europe Cooperation: Overcoming Difficulties, toward a New Development Stage” on the occasion of Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Day (March 1).

Since its establishment in 1996, the forum has developed continuously, becoming one of the largest-scale inter-regional cooperation mechanisms. At present, ASEM gathers 53 members, accounting for 60 percent of the population, over 70 percent of goods and services trade and 60 percent of FDI of the world, and making up around 65 percent of GDP and 75 percent of global tourism.

Thứ trưởng Bộ Ngoại giao Phạm Quang Hiệu.
Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Hieu.

ASEM is an effective and appropriate framework to promote exchange and dialogue among the members, thus contributing to building and strengthening trust and jointly finding the best and most effective solutions to handle emerging world and regional issues. In particular, the goodwill and efforts of all members are the key to ASEM cooperation to soon overcome difficulties, and continue to affirm and promote its values.

In that context, with more than a quarter of a century of cooperation, the forum's position, and the enormous potential and need for cooperation among member countries, it can completely expect for the future of ASEM cooperation, he affirmed.

According to him, ASEM, as the only mechanism connecting Asia and Europe, brings together the world's leading economies, becoming the main locomotive of global economic growth, the centre of innovation and the main trend of the 21st century, the leader in sustainable development and green transformation, and the cradle of many human civilisations. The internal strength as well as complementarity of its members is an important premise for the forum to take the lead in capturing and taking advantage of the current large flows of cooperation in science-technology, digital transformation, sustainable and inclusive development, and climate change response.

To bring into full play the potential of ASEM, Hieu went on, it is important to develop a strategic vision towards comprehensive, effective, and people-centred cooperation; and harmoniously combine immediate requirements with long-term goals, as well as inheritance, stability and innovation for development.

An ASEM vision will convey a strong message of a responsible and adaptive forum in the new situation, which continues taking the lead in promoting multilateral cooperation, contributing to building a fairer, more effective and democratic global governance mechanism.

As a founding member, since 1996, Viet Nam has been active and responsible, contributing to the creation of important milestones in the ASEM development.

The country has successfully assumed many responsibilities such as the host of the ASEM Summit, and Foreign Ministers’ Meeting. Most recently, in June 2021, in the context of ASEM cooperation being interrupted by the COVID-19 outbreak, Viet Nam actively proposed and successfully organised a High-Level Policy Dialogue on "further strengthening the Asia-Europe partnership in a changing world” in Ha Noi - the largest-scale activity to celebrate the forum's 25th founding anniversary.

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh attends 13th ASEM Summit (Photo: VNA)
Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh attends 13th ASEM Summit (Photo: VNA)

Viet Nam has always been active and proactive in contributing to building and promoting the implementation of many important cooperation orientations and strategies of the ASEM cooperation, and proposed new collaboration initiatives.

Accordingly, Viet Nam has joined ASEM members to uphold the interests of peace, security and stability and promote the forum’s common consensus on international and regional issues; and called for its support and effective cooperation in solving emerging issues such as pandemic prevention and control, economic recovery, climate change and disaster response.

The country has also promoted the common awareness and support of ASEM members for ASEAN and Viet Nam's efforts to maintain peace, security and stability, settle disputes in the region on the basis of international law, and contribute to the protection and promotion of the country's security and development interests.

For Viet Nam, 2022 is an important year, creating a foundation for the implementation of the country's goals and strategic orientations for socio-economic development in the new period, and marking an important step in its economic integration and links, with new visions and aspirations, the official stressed.

In that context, Viet Nam will continue to place a high priority on ASEM cooperation and is willing to continue accompanying ASEM members to promote Eurasian cooperation to contribute more to peace and prosperity of the two continents and the whole world.

ASEM members currently account for 23 out of the 30 strategic and comprehensive partners of Viet Nam, making up about 70 percent of FDI, 70 percent of international trade value and 80 percent of international tourist arrivals of Viet Nam.

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(Source: VNA)