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Result of ROK-ASEAN Dialogue

  • Date : 2021-07-06 22:16:08
  • Hit : 3117

- The ROK and ASEAN’s senior officials discuss ways to deepen and expand cooperation under the New Southern Policy

1. A ROK-ASEAN Dialogue* was held at 10:00-12:40 (KST), July 6, in a virtual format. Deputy Minister for Political Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Yeo Seung-bae co-chaired the meeting with Emaleen Abdul Rahman Teo, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Brunei Darussalam.

* The ROK-ASEAN Dialogue is an annual dialogue attended by senior officials (vice/deputy ministers of foreign affairs) of the ROK and the ten ASEAN member states. Due to COVID-19, the Dialogue was held in a virtual format.

2. ASEAN participants appreciated the continuous development of the ROK-ASEAN relationship even amid the COVID-19 crisis last year. In particular, they noted that the New Southern Policy has contributed significantly to ASEAN’s efforts to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, the participants agreed to further strengthen bilateral cooperation by coordinating the New Southern Policy and ASEAN’s major policies such as the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework.

The ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework is ASEAN’s strategy to overcome the COVID-19 crisis.

3. Deputy Minister Yeo explained that the ROK government is actively pursuing substantial cooperation with a focus on the seven initiatives of the New Southern Policy Plus in order to overcome COVID-19 and prepare for the post-COVID-19 era with ASEAN.

The seven initiatives of the New Southern Policy Plus : People (public health education cultural exchange), Prosperity (trade and investment infrastructure development future industries), Peace (cooperation on non-traditional security)

  • With regard to “People,” the Deputy Minister appreciated continued communication between the two sides through creative means such as information technology despite the constraints posed by COVID-19. He proposed expanding youth exchange programs, as closer mutual understanding between next generations of the two sides will be a foundation for future cooperation between the ROK and ASEAN.

  • On “Prosperity,” Deputy Minister Yeo hoped that the two sides would bring the RCEP into force as soon as possible, while also seeking additional liberalization of the ROK-ASEAN FTA in order to build a multilateral economic system that is sustainable, environmentally friendly and resilient after COVID-19. He also said that bilateral cooperation will be expanded to the financial sector with the opening of the “Finance Cooperation Center” this year.

  • On “Peace,” Deputy Minister Yeo emphasized that it is important to strengthen cooperation with ASEAN in cybersecurity, climate change and disaster management as COVID-19 calls for closer cooperation in the field of non-traditional security for the vulnerable. In addition, he asked for ASEAN member countries’ attention to and support for the ROK’s bid to host COP28 in 2023, so that the ROK can contribute to strengthening international cooperation in the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

4. The participants agreed that joint efforts between the ROK and ASEAN should be elevated to maintain and promote regional peace in the face of the increasingly complex regional and global situations.

  • The ROK took note of the importance of the ASEAN-led mechanisms in maintaining inclusive and open multilateralism in the region, and expressed its commitment to further advancing regional cooperation based on the shared principles of openness, inclusiveness, transparency and rules-based order.

  • Regarding the Korean Peninsula, Deputy Minister Yeo extended appreciation to ASEAN for its support for the ROK government’s efforts toward the complete denuclearization and the establishment of permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula. He also asked that ASEAN send a consistent message to urge peaceful resolution of the situation through an early resumption of dialogue. The senior leaders of ASEAN reaffirmed their full support for the Peace Process on the Korean Peninsula.

  • On the South China Sea, the ROK expressed its consistent position, calling for peace and stability as well as the freedom of navigation in and overflight above the South China Sea. The ROK also conveyed its commitment to efforts for the restoration of democracy, peace and stability in Myanmar.

5. Building on the outcome of today’s discussion, the senior officials will continue to communicate for the success of the upcoming ASEAN-related meetings including the Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in August and the Summit in October.