In Focus : 20th ASEAN Plus Three Foreign Ministers’ Meeting news3

In Focus : 20th ASEAN Plus Three Foreign Ministers’ Meeting

           On 2 August 2019, H.E. Mr. Don Pramudwinai, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand, chaired the 20th ASEAN Plus Three (APT) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, during the 52nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM)/ Post Ministerial Conferences (PMCs) held in Bangkok. The Meeting was attended by Foreign Ministers of ASEAN Member States, People’s Republic of China, Japan, and Republic of Korea.

           The Meeting shared the view that multilateralism, free trade, connectivity and sustainability are key elements for regional stability and prosperity. In this regard, the Ministers supported synergies between the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025 and other connectivity initiatives in the region. The Meeting welcomed preparations for the ASEAN Plus Three Leaders’ Statement on Connecting the Connectivities, to be adopted at the 22nd APT Summit in November 2019.

           The Meeting supported a free, fair, inclusive and transparent multilateral trading system. They also expressed support to the Regional and Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) negotiations to be concluded by this year as it is important to strengthen regional economic integration. Other economic issues discussed included financial safety nets and the development of science and technology capacity to prepare the region for the Fourth Industrial Revolution. On socio-cultural cooperation, the Meeting noted people-to-people exchanges organized by ASEAN Centres in East Asian countries and supported Thailand’s proposal to establish an APT website to create visibility and promote greater understanding among the APT countries.   

           The Meeting also discussed cooperation in agriculture, disaster management, food security, smart cities and the preparations for the 22nd APT Summit in November. The Meeting exchanged views on current issues, such as the Korean Peninsula, the South China Sea and the ASEAN Outlook on Indo-Pacific.

           ASEAN Plus Three is one of the most dynamic frameworks for cooperation between ASEAN and Dialogue Partners. Established in 1997, it has evolved into a forum for functional cooperation between ASEAN and People’s Republic of China, Japan and Republic of Korea, such as connectivity, monetary and financial management, natural resources, and disaster prevention and mitigation.