​​General Secretary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Kao Kim Hourn affirmed that since joining ASEAN in 1995, Vietnam has been making important, proactive and positive contributions.

28 years ago, on July 28, 7, Vietnam officially became the 1995th member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

Vietnam is always proud to be a responsible and active member with significant contributions to the ASEAN as it is today.

Active, proactive and responsible members

Association of Southeast Asian Nations was established on 8/8/1967 with 5 original members; gradually developed into a comprehensive and close cooperation organization, including 10 Southeast Asian countries and officially became the ASEAN Community on December 31, 12.

Vietnam officially joined ASEAN on July 28, 7 on the occasion of the 1995th ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting (AMM-28) in Brunei. However, the process of Vietnam joining ASEAN has been started before.

Specifically, in July 7, Vietnam joined the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC) and became an observer of ASEAN.

Since 1993, Vietnam has held regular consultations with ASEAN on the occasion of the annual ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting, participating in ASEAN cooperation programs and projects in five areas: science - technology, environment, and health. , culture - information, social development.

In 1994, Vietnam became one of the original members of the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), the first regional forum on political-security issues led by ASEAN.

Joining ASEAN is a strategic decision of our Party and State, contributing to creating a new development situation for the country, consolidating a peaceful and stable environment, and taking advantage of external resources for development. develop and enhance the status of the country.

Joining ASEAN with the motto "actively, proactively and responsibly", during the past 28 years, Vietnam has made many contributions to a unified, united, peaceful, stable and developed ASEAN. , has a voice in the region and is recognized by major countries.

Immediately after joining the organization, Vietnam solved many obstacles to actively promote ASEAN to admit Laos, Myanmar (in 1997) and Cambodia (in 1999). This has helped Vietnam become a bridge between mainland Southeast Asia and island Southeast Asia. As a result, by 1999, all 10 Southeast Asian countries had realized the dream of one big family, gathering the collective strength of the whole region, eliminating distrust among ethnic groups, and narrowing the gap between the two groups. development, significantly enhancing the spirit of regional autonomy.

Along with that, over the past 28 years, Vietnam has played a pivotal role in defining goals, development directions and formulating major decisions in ASEAN. Along with that, Vietnam is always actively and seriously working with ASEAN to put decisions into implementation with a broad vision, many breakthrough initiatives in all fields with increasing extent and scope.

In the context that the world and the region are often affected by rapid and complex fluctuations, which directly and indirectly affect security and stability in Southeast Asia, Vietnam has contributed to the develop principles and "rules of the game" together with ASEAN to effectively respond to threats to regional peace, security and stability, and promote dialogue and cooperation.

For the international community, Vietnam has made many important contributions in expanding relations and promoting cooperation between ASEAN and its partners.

One of the important highlights of Vietnam's contribution to ASEAN is the successful undertaking and hosting of important ASEAN activities and meetings, contributing to strengthening solidarity and unity in ASEAN, enhancing prestige of the association and marked the President's country with many initiatives.

In particular, 2020 marks the 25th year of joining ASEAN, also the third time that Vietnam assumes the role of ASEAN Chair. The difficulty of this period is to face great challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but Vietnam has demonstrated its bravery and the leading and proactive role of the rotating President.

Vietnam has been proactive, active and responsible and persistent in ASEAN's principles, together with member countries, in their efforts to help the ASEAN ship overcome the storm, proactively respond and adapt to the new context, keep maintaining the momentum of regional cooperation and connectivity, affirming the central role and enhancing the position of ASEAN. Many important initiatives in 2020 have become common assets of ASEAN such as the ASEAN COVID-19 Response Fund, the ASEAN Emergency Medical Supplies Stockpile, the ASEAN Master Recovery Framework, etc.

Unleash resources for the development of the ASEAN Community

In 2023, a high-ranking Vietnamese delegation led by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh attended the 42nd ASEAN Summit and related meetings in Labuan Bajo (Indonesia) from May 9 to 11. carry many important messages.

That is the spirit of ASEAN solidarity, the determination to make substantive and effective contributions to the building of the ASEAN Community and also affirm the consistent line and unifying policy of the Party and State of Vietnam, considering ASEAN is an important and integral part of foreign policy.

In that spirit, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh's speeches are aimed at generating ideas, arousing self-reliance, and unleashing resources for the development of the ASEAN Community. The Prime Minister raised many proposals at the meetings.

Firstly, solidarity, unity, independence, self-reliance, self-reliance and strong promotion of the central role are the fundamental values ​​that make ASEAN successful. The Prime Minister stated that solidarity is an invincible strength, which must be shown through specific will and actions. Consolidating solidarity and unity is the core task for an independent and resilient ASEAN.

The Prime Minister also emphasized that ASEAN needs to maintain a strategic balance in its relations with partners, especially big countries. Keeping a strategic balance will keep ASEAN's central role, towards building "a great ASEAN." ASEAN must really be a reliable bridge, capable of regulating relations with major countries; creating and promoting a culture of dialogue, cooperation, consultation, and building trust; coordinated response to common challenges.

Second, promote regional connectivity in terms of institutions, infrastructure and people to clear cooperation bottlenecks and arouse development potential. The Prime Minister emphasized that these are three strategic breakthroughs to create stronger momentum for ASEAN in the coming decades.

In the context of the global economy with many potential risks and uncertainties, in order to promote recovery and sustainable development, the Prime Minister emphasized the expansion of the intra-regional market, suggested efforts to negotiate to upgrade the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement, synchronously and drastically implement regional connectivity projects, creating a qualitative change for the investment, business and tourism environment.

The Prime Minister suggested paying attention to promoting cooperation in the digital economy, digital government, and circular economy, along with connecting the power grid, developing renewable energy, and soon building long-term strategies on human resource training. high-quality human resources, through improving the efficiency of the implementation of the Agreement on Mutual Recognition of Labor in a number of ASEAN occupations.

Third, sticking to the core spirit of ASEAN which is people-centered, the goal and driving force of community building, the Prime Minister emphasized that ASEAN should pay attention to promoting efforts to narrow the development gap, especially especially in remote, remote and sub-regional areas.

Sub-regional cooperation should be linked to the common cooperation programs of the ASEAN Community in all fields, in order to open up a larger development space and ensure a better life for all people.

At the conference, the Prime Minister and leaders had in-depth discussions on regional and international issues, reaffirming ASEAN's principled stance.

The Prime Minister emphasized that protecting peace, stability, security and safety, freedom of navigation and overflight in the East Sea is both the interest and responsibility of all countries, and suggested promoting the full implementation of the law. and the effectiveness of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and striving to achieve a Substantive, effective Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC) in accordance with international law and United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982.

The above proposals and contributions of the Prime Minister received the attention, support and appreciation of the delegates.

With a proactive, positive, reliable and responsible mindset, Vietnam has been and will continue to work with member countries to make efforts to effectively implement cooperation initiatives and agreements, making practical contributions to the country. solve common problems of ASEAN and the region.

Economic cooperation - trade has grown tremendously

After 28 years of joining ASEAN, the economic - trade relations of Vietnam - ASEAN have made a remarkable development, both in breadth and depth.

In 1996, when Vietnam first joined the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA), Vietnam's two-way trade with other countries in the bloc only reached about 6 billion USD, but up to now, this number has increased to nearly 10 billion USD. more than 60 times, an average of about XNUMX billion USD.

In particular, in the period 2010-2021, trade between Vietnam and ASEAN has experienced a remarkable growth, in which exports increase from 9,3 billion USD in 2010 to 29,1 billion USD in 2021. Nam also increased imports from ASEAN, from 14,5 billion USD in 2010 to 41,1 billion USD in 2021, an increase of 26,6 billion USD.

According to data from the General Department of Customs, in 2022, Vietnam's export value to ASEAN reached 33,86 billion USD, up 17,7% compared to 2021 while imports reached 47,28 billion USD, up 14,9. .2021% compared to XNUMX.

In the first 2 months of 2023, export turnover to ASEAN reached 4,96 billion USD, accounting for about 10% of the total export turnover of the country.

Vietnam's exports to some ASEAN markets such as Thailand and Singapore increased. Specifically, in the first 2 months of 2023, although the total bilateral trade turnover decreased slightly by 6% (mainly due to the decrease in import turnover from Thailand to Vietnam), Vietnam's exports to Thailand reached 1,2 12,4 billion USD, up 2022% over the same period in XNUMX.

Also in the first two months of 2, two-way trade turnover between Vietnam and Singapore as well as export and import turnover in each direction increased. Specifically, the total import-export turnover between Vietnam and Singapore reached 2023 billion USD, up 1,49% over the same period in 16,5. Vietnam's export turnover to Singapore reached 2022 million USD, up 677,7% over the same period in 8,8.

ASEAN Secretary-General Kao Kim Hourn affirmed that since joining ASEAN in 1995, Vietnam has been making important, proactive and positive contributions. With about 100 million people, ranking third among ASEAN countries in terms of population size, the S-shaped country is one of the ASEAN countries attracting a lot of attention in the fields of investment, tourism and trade exchange. commercial.

Arsjad Rasjid, Chairman of the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) and Chairman of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Arsjad Rasjid assessed that Vietnam has made positive contributions to the implementation of the economic priorities of the ASEAN Chairman. in the year 2023.

According to Mr. Arsjad Rasjid, Vietnam plays an important role in promoting trade and investment within and outside the region, as well as actively participating in initiatives such as the ASEAN Free Trade Area and recently expressed wishes to join the cross-border payment connection network, which is believed to be a positive development step for regional economic integration.

In addition, Vietnam's hosting of the ASEAN Wind Energy 2023 event, scheduled for October, is a significant contribution to the region's renewable energy goals.

According to Vietnamese Ambassador to the US Nguyen Quoc Dung (former Head of ASEAN SOM), the development orientation of ASEAN in the coming time is very consistent with Vietnam's policies. ASEAN has always been one of the top priorities in Vietnam's foreign policy.

While enjoying the benefits brought by the ASEAN Community, Vietnam will continue to proactively propose initiatives and orientations to join hands in building the community. A strong and resilient ASEAN Community will be a solid support for Vietnam to overcome the growing difficulties and storms in the coming time.

Since joining ASEAN, Vietnam has made many positive contributions to the common development of the whole bloc, thereby enhancing Vietnam's position and leading role in the organization. The outstanding contributions of Vietnam along with the country's achievements in the current period are the motivation for Vietnam to confidently deploy its foreign policy towards an increasingly important role for ASEAN in the coming period. next.

Source: Vietnam.vn