Vietnamese Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien: ASEAN should have a common say on international issues
(VNA): Vietnamese Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien called on ASEAN member countries to reinforce their co-operation by having a common stance and a common say on regional and international issues, especially issues crucial to political stability and security in Southeast Asia, at the 38th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting (AMM-38) in Vientiane on July 26.
This will help demonstrate that the ASEAN continues to be a strong association playing an increasingly important role in both the regional and international arena, the Vietnamese FM said, adding that this will also help the group counter challenges arising from new economic, political and security developments in the region and the world.
FM Nien praised the group and each member country for making great efforts to strengthen their co-operation, speed up regional co-ordination, broaden co-operative ties with outside partners, and translate the high-level decisions set forth in the Vientiane Plan of Action since the 10th ASEAN Summit in December 2004 into deeds. He said these endeavours have initially brought about encouraging outcomes.
He stressed priority should be given to issues relating to accelerating regional collaboration and narrowing the development gap within ASEAN. The association should continue boosting initiatives, programmes and projects to eradicate hunger, alleviate poverty and narrow the gap of development between ASEAN member countries, and between ASEAN and other regions in the world.
FM Nien also reviewed the implementation of Initiatives for ASEAN Integration (IAI) to narrow the development gap.
On behalf of the new member countries, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, FM Nien expressed thanks to the six old members of ASEAN and the dialogue partners for making numerous contributions to the programme. He also expressed his hope that these countries would actively help narrow the development gap in the coming period.
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