ASEAN - EU upgraded relations to Strategic Partnership 0ASEAN - EU upgraded relations to Strategic Partnership 0

(Dan Tri) – ASEAN – EU have made an important decision to officially upgrade relations to Strategic Partnership at the 23rd ASEAN-EU Foreign Ministers’ Conference.

ASEAN and EU Foreign Ministers attending the conference (Photo: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam)

Upgrade ASEAN – EU relations

The 23rd ASEAN – EU Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on December 1 took place online.

The two sides made an important decision to officially upgrade ASEAN-EU relations to Strategic Partnership after the in-principle decision made at the 22nd ASEAN-EU Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in January 2019.

ASEAN and the EU continue to affirm the importance of the `partnership in association` relationship between the two regional organizations, which is considered the most successful, and strongly commit to strengthening coordination and promoting multilateral cooperation.

Recommend that the EU actively support the Covid-19 response fund

ASEAN highly appreciates the EU as the most important partner of ASEAN.

In the coming time, the two sides agreed to continue to coordinate closely in controlling and repelling the Covid-19 pandemic, overcoming its impacts and promoting recovery.

At the Conference, the EU announced a new initiative to implement the Health Support Program for pandemic preparedness in Southeast Asia within the framework of the EU’s 350 million Euro assistance package for ASEAN to support capacity building.

The Ministers approved the ASEAN-EU Joint Declaration on Connectivity, on the basis of promoting integration of the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025 and the EU’s Asia-Europe Connectivity Strategy;

Oppose the militarization of the East Sea

Discussing the international and regional situation, ASEAN and EU Foreign Ministers agreed on the need to ensure an environment of peace, security and stability in the region, creating favorable conditions for countries to focus their efforts.

The countries affirmed the importance of maintaining peace, stability, security, safety, and freedom of navigation and aviation in the East Sea, the world’s vital maritime route, which accounts for 40% of marine traffic.

Building the East Sea into a sea of peace

ASEAN - EU upgraded relations to Strategic Partnership

Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh (Photo: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam)

Speaking at the Conference, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh affirmed that Vietnam supports officially upgrading ASEAN-EU relations to a strategic partnership.

The Deputy Prime Minister suggested that the EU, with its recorded experience in regional integration, actively cooperate, share experiences and support ASEAN in narrowing the development gap, connecting sub-regions with the common development process.

Sharing the opinions of other countries on the situation in the East Sea, the Deputy Prime Minister affirmed that Vietnam’s views are consistent with ASEAN’s principled stance affirmed at the 36th ASEAN Summit in June 2020,

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