Vietnam actively contributes to ASEAN’s developments: official

Vietnam has always been an active and responsible member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) over the past 25 years since it joined the regional bloc, as well as made significant contributions to its development, especially in crucial moments, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh stressed on August 19.

Participants at the event (Photo: VNA)
Participants at the event (Photo: VNA)

Speaking at the opening ceremony of a virtual international symposium in Hanoi, he further said Vietnam has contributed to the creation of ASEAN milestones such as realising the goals of establishing a bloc with all the 10 Southeast Asian countries as members and the ASEAN Community, building ASEAN Charter, and promoting the central role and international position of ASEAN.

Over the past 25 years, Vietnam has witnessed important changes of the association from humble beginning to the most successful regional cooperation organisation for peace, stability and prosperity in the region, as well as an important partner of global powers, he added.

Former Deputy Prime Minister Vu Khoan said Vietnam's entry in ASEAN has eventually brought win-win benefits. For ASEAN, it was the first step to bring together all the 10 Southeast Asian nations, paving the way to eliminate suspicions and confrontation, and turn to peace and cooperation. For Vietnam, this was the first step to integrate into the world, he added.

Participants held that over the past 25 years, Vietnam has played a key role in ASEAN with many milestones, notably the realisation of a bloc involving 10 Southeast Asian countries, the creation of the cooperation and dialogue culture in the region, and the expansion of participation of external partners in building trust and preventing conflicts via ASEAN-led mechanisms.

Vietnam has also joined building, reinforcing and developing codes of conducts and regulations on behaviours of counries when engaging in regional cooperation, they stress, adding that there is still a large room for ASEAN to develop in the context of diverse challenges such as geostrategic fluctuations, competition between powers, development gaps among member countries, territorial disputes, and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Delegates suggested ASEAN promoting cohesion to have appropriate approach and flexible behaviour to address these challenges as well as maintain its central role in the region and build a peaceful, stable and prosperous Southeast Asia.

The development orientations of ASEAN also attracted the attention of participants at the fuction. Many emphasised that ASEAN should focus on such issues as recovering socio-economic life in face of the COVID-19 pandemic, and adapting to changes in production, trade and investment.

Founded in 1967, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.