ASEAN looks towards stronger group

Friday, 2017-06-09 11:07:31
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NDO/VNA – Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Quoc Dung has called on ASEAN member countries to ensure a deep understanding of opportunities and challenges amid rapid changes in the region and the world in order to seek solutions to fulfil the group’s major objectives.

The targets include building a strong community, bringing about pragmatic interests for ASEAN citizens, fostering intra economic connectivity and enhancing citizen-to-citizen links, the Deputy FM said at an international seminar on geopolitical changes in Asia-Pacific and ASEAN’s 50-year path in Hanoi on June 9.

These efforts will help to increase the vitality of ASEAN as well as its centrality in the region, he noted.

Reviewing ASEAN’s development over the past half a century, Dung said that with five initial members, ASEAN has grown into a comprehensive regional cooperation group with ten member nations, operating on the basis of the ASEAN Charter.

He described the formation of the ASEAN Community on December 31, 2015 with three pillars of politics-security, economy, and culture-society as a breakthrough, helping the bloc firmly step into a new period.

Peter Girke, Director of Konrad Adenauer Foundation, said over the past 50 years, ASEAN has brought benefits to not only its member countries but also to its citizens, highlighting common consensus as the great achievement recorded by the nations.

Associate Professor Dr. Nguyen Vu Tung, Director of the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, underscored ASEAN’s role in connecting and promoting regional cooperation, as well as its successes and vitality in the context of complex developments in the Asia-Pacific.

As part of activities within the national programme marking the 50th founding anniversary of ASEAN, the seminar was jointly held by the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, the ASEAN Department of the Foreign Ministry and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation.