Top Stories : Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand attended the 19th ASEAN Plus Three Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, the 8th East Asia Summit Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, and the 25th ASEAN Regional Forum news3

Top Stories : Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand attended the 19th ASEAN Plus Three Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, the 8th East Asia Summit Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, and the 25th ASEAN Regional Forum

On 4 August 2018, H.E. Mr. Don Pramudwinai, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand, attended the 19th ASEAN Plus Three (APT) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, the 8th East Asia Summit (EAS) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, and the 25th ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) in Singapore.
 
The 19th APT Foreign Ministers’ Meeting noted with satisfaction the cooperation between ASEAN and the People’s Republic of China, Japan, and the Republic of Korea that is diverse and has constantly evolved for the past two decades especially on regional connectivity, finance, food security, free trade, and people-to-people exchanges. The Meeting further discussed ways to enhance APT cooperation towards the goal of realising the East Asia Economic community (EAEc). They also exchanged views on various regional issues where Thailand emphasised the importance of maintaining regional financial stability and mitigating economic risks, and connectivity that includes linking businesses and micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to regional and global supply chains as well as underscored the importance of food security and active ageing.
 
The 8th EAS Foreign Ministers’ Meeting reviewed the progress of the implementation of the Manila Plan of Action to Advance the Phnom Penh Declaration on the East Asia Summit Development Initiative (2018 – 2022). The Meeting also discussed future areas of cooperation and the strengthening of EAS as a strategic leaders-led forum to discuss political, and economic issues of common interests and concerns in order to promote peace, stability, and prosperity in the region, with ASEAN at the centre. Furthermore, the Meeting exchanged views on important regional and international issues such as the Indo-Pacific idea, the South China Sea, the Korean Peninsula, the Rakhine State, and the growing trend of protectionism. The EAS website (http://www.eastasiasummit.asean.org) was officially launched during the meeting as a means to strengthen EAS along with the continued engagement between the Committee of Permanent Representatives to ASEAN (CPR) and non-ASEAN Ambassadors of EAS participating countries in Jakarta. 
 
The EAS was established in 2005 with 18 Member States comprising the ASEAN Member States, China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, India, Russia, and the United States. A Summit is held annually at the ASEAN Summit and Related Meetings.
 
During the 25th ARF, the Member States exchanged views on politics and security in the region such as the situation in the South China Sea, the Korean Peninsula, the Rakhine State, disaster preparedness, climate change, maritime cooperation, and non-traditional security threats such as terrorism, cyber security, and natural disasters. On this occasion, the Minister of Foreign Affairs expressed his appreciation to the ARF Member States for the well wishes, support, and kind assistance rendered to the Wild Boar Academy Football team rescue mission at Tham Luang Cave, Chiangrai, which underscores the importance of disaster preparedness and timely response especially through ASEAN-led mechanisms. Furthermore, Thailand emphasised the promotion of preventive diplomacy through the 3Ps, namely Prevention, Protection, and Partnership, which can help resolve all issues effectively, such as the situation in the South China Sea. The Minister of Foreign Affairs also emphasised sustainability in every area of work to ensure that any progress made continues to be built upon.  
 
The ARF was established in 1997 with 27 Members including the ASEAN Member States, the European Union, China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, India, Canada, Russia, the United States, Timor-Leste, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Papua New Guinea, Pakistan, Mongolia, and North Korea. The ARF Foreign Ministers meet every year during the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and Related Meetings (AMM/PMC).