Vietnam pledges to play more active role in ASEAN-US cooperation

Vietnam will play a more active role in cooperation between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the US, especially within the framework of the ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting Plus (ADMM+), Minister of National Defence General Phan Van Giang affirmed on November 15.
Minister of National Defence General Phan Van Giang speaks at the meeting. (Photo: VNA)
Minister of National Defence General Phan Van Giang speaks at the meeting. (Photo: VNA)

Addressing in the ASEAN-US Defence Ministers’ Informal Meeting in Indonesia, Giang praised the US commitment to supporting ASEAN’s centrality and promoting comprehensive cooperation with the region, especially in economy, trade, investment, and science-technology.

The minister also shared the view that the region is facing many traditional and non-traditional security challenges, requiring the cooperation and contributions of all countries.

He and other ASEAN ministers affirmed that with its central role, ASEAN stands ready to cooperate with the US and other partners to handle these challenges.

For his part, US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin recalled the attendance of all US Defence Secretaries at ADMM since 2010, which he said, demonstrates the importance the US attaches to ADMM , an important cooperation mechanism in the regional security architecture.

He noted his hope for more effective, substantive defence cooperation with the grouping, for regional peace and security, through joint exercises or the US-ASEAN Emerging Defence Leaders Programme.

The official held that maritime security plays the most important role in regional security, and emphasised the significance of ensuring the freedom and openness of maritime routes in accordance with international law.

On the sidelines of the meeting, Giang and Austin met to discuss measures to promote bilateral defence cooperation, focusing on war consequences settlement and humanitarian aid such as bomb and mine clearance, dioxin remediation, and searching for soldiers missing during wartime in Vietnam.

Giang said that Vietnam will organise the second International Defence Expo in late 2024 and expressed his hope that US defence industry businesses will attend this event.