WASHINGTON D.C. – A Vietnamese delegation led by Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Vinh attended the 26th ASEAN-US Dialogue in Washington on May 2-3, which focused on orientations and measures to promote the two sides’ cooperation.
At the meeting, the two sides highly valued positive progress of the bilateral cooperation in different areas such as politics-security, economics, trade, investment, culture, education, science and technology under the ASEAN-US Action Plan for the 2011-2015, and the 2012 ASEAN-US Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA).
The US is currently the 3rd largest investor of ASEAN, and the 4th biggest trade partner with the two-way trade of US$198 billion.
ASEAN and the US affirmed the importance of the strategic partnership for peace, security, and prosperity in the region and pledged to continue strengthening cooperation to enhance the bilateral ties to a strategic level.
The US will assist the bloc in building the ASEAN Community by 2015, enhancing connectivity, developing human resource, addressing common challenges like climate change adaptation, management of natural disasters and pandemic diseases, water resource and bio-diversity management, energy security, and trans-national crime prevention.
They also undertook to boost cooperation within the Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI).
The US delegates confirmed that Barack Obama’s Government considers ASEAN as an important pillar of the US policy on the region and advocates the central role of ASEAN in the overall regional structure.
The two sides emphasized the need to settle disputes in a peaceful manner on the basis of international law and the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea in order to maintain peace, stability, security and maritime safety in the East Sea.
In order to consolidate trust and ensure peace, security and stability in the region, the delegates agreed that ASEAN and China need to launch negotiations on establishment of the Code of Conduct (COC) as soon as possible.
Speaking at the dialogue, Deputy Foreign Minister Vinh highly valued the US for coordinating closely with ASEAN, supporting the group’s efforts to build the ASEAN Community