"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Ha Noi Declaration of 1998

[Place] Hanoi
[Date] December 16, 1998
[Source] ASEAN Secretariat
[Full text]

We, the Heads of State and Government of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) gathered in Hanoi for the Sixth ASEAN Summit,

Emphasising the theme of this gathering "Unity and Cooperation for an ASEAN of Peace, Stability and Equitable Development" and recalling the Vision 2020 of ASEAN as "a concert of Southeast Asian nations, outward-looking, living in peace, stability and prosperity, bonded together in partnership in dynamic development and in a community of caring societies";

Aware of the opportunities for renewed growth, peace and prosperity as well as the challenges posed especially by the economic crisis, as ASEAN approaches the new millennium;

Confident of our national and regional resilience, the fundamental strengths of our economies, and the ability and will of our people to overcome the difficulties that currently confront our nations and region;


1. We reaffirm our view of ASEAN as indispensable to regional peace and prosperity, an association with a history of demonstrated dynamism and close cooperation, a force for peace and stability in our part of the world.

2. We have decided to admit the Kingdom of Cambodia as the tenth member of ASEAN and instructed the Foreign Ministers to organise special ceremonies of admission in Hanoi.

3. We note ASEAN's success in promoting regional peace and stability, based on the cardinal principles of mutual respect, non-interference, consensus, dialogue and consultation. This has contributed substantially to many years of rapid economic growth and social development for our nations. We will not be complacent in the maintenance of regional peace but will seek to constantly reinforce the ties among us.

4. We recognise that the economic and financial upheaval that currently afflicts our economies and societies has severely set back many of the gains that our nations and our Association have achieved. We shall overcome those economic and social difficulties by working together in ever closer cooperation and ever stronger solidarity.

5. We shall move ASEAN onto a higher plane of regional cooperation in order to strengthen ASEAN's effectiveness in dealing with the challenges of growing interdependence within ASEAN and of its integration into the global economy. In doing so, we commit ourselves to intensifying our dialogue on current and emerging issues, further consolidating our unity in diversity, our cohesiveness and harmony.

6. We are committed to accelerating, economic and financial reforms to strengthen our respective economies. We believe that reform efforts at the national level must be reinforced by corresponding reforms at the global level to address weaknesses in the international financial architecture and welcome the contribution of the G-22 in this area. We strongly urge that further work be done within the G-22 or an expanded version of it. ASEAN will continue to play an active role in the international community to expedite the development and implementation of these reforms.

7. The international community also has a responsibility to continue to support our reform efforts through bilateral and multilateral assistance, including new and innovative approaches to catalyse the return of private capital flows to the region. In this context, we welcome the Miyazawa Plan, and the Asian Growth and Recovery Initiative to revitalise private sector growth in Asia. We look forward to their quick implementation.

8. We recognise that the financial crisis has a social dimension, with the poor and vulnerable segments of our societies being the most adversely affected. In this regard, we will ensure that efforts to safeguard the interests of the poor form an integral part of our reform efforts. We also urge the international community to step up their technical and financial assistance in this area as well as ensure that the reforms in the international financial architecture include a social dimension to protect the poor.

9. We reaffirm our commitment to the greater integration of our economies as a primary expression of our cooperation and solidarity.

10. To this end, we shall spare no efforts to quickly restore financial and macroeconomic stability, bring about early economic recovery and maintain sustained growth. In this regard, ASEAN has put in place an ASEAN Surveillance Process, based on peer review, to highlight emerging risks, recommend appropriate policy responses, and encourage early action to avoid such risks.

11. ASEAN will keep its markets open as it recognises that the key to strengthening and stabilising the region's currencies and economies is to attract long-term investments. ASEAN reaffirms its commitment to trade and investment liberalisation and facilitation, at the multilateral and regional levels, and will continue to undertake concrete measures towards these objectives.

12. We resolve to implement, as scheduled, the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) and all approved programmes and projects. In addition, we seek to further accelerate AFTA and expedite the implementation of the ASEAN Industrial Cooperation Scheme (AICO). We shall open up our investment regimes through the launching of the ASEAN Investment Area (AIA), which will enhance the attractiveness of the region as an investment destination through the application of consistent investment laws and policies.

13. We encourage wider use of ASEAN currencies in intra-ASEAN trade settlements.

14. We shall develop and strengthen the ASEAN regional infrastructure by developing networks of electricity grids, gas and water pipelines, and expanding transport and telecommunications links. Efficient and quality infrastructure will enhance ASEAN's competitiveness.

15. We shall endeavour to narrow the gap in the levels of development among the Member Countries and reduce poverty and socio-economic disparities through greater subregional cooperation.

16. We shall ensure food security in the region and enhance the competitiveness of our food, agriculture and forestry sectors by increasing productivity, promoting intra and extra ASEAN trade, and greater private sector investment.

17. We shall encourage the active participation and effective contribution of the business sector to assist in the shaping of ASEAN's policies and initiatives to overcome the crisis. A close partnership between the ASEAN Governments and the private sector would be crucial in paving the way to sustained recovery and prosperity of the region.

18. Accordingly, ASEAN calls upon the concerned countries and international financial institutions to continue to assist the affected countries in their economic recovery through development assistance, increased private investment flows, greater market access of goods originating from ASEAN region, increased technology transfer and cooperation in human resource development.

19. The maintenance and creation of employment shall be a primary consideration in our strategies for economic recovery and growth. An essential part of this shall be a concerted and cooperative effort to foster SMEs and to train our people for the demands and opportunities of the industries of today and tomorrow.

20. We shall continue to cooperate and strengthen ASEAN's capacity in science and technology, particularly in the field of Information Technology. Towards this end, we shall develop the ASEAN Information Infrastructure.

21. We recognise that the ultimate objective of economic development is to raise standards of living and to promote human development in all its dimensions, so as to enable the people of ASEAN to have the fullest opportunity to realise their potential.

22. The eradication of poverty shall be the ultimate goal of our strategies for recovery and growth, and the development of our rural areas a principal means for attaining it. We shall work closely together to eradicate poverty in and develop rural and remote areas as well as the less developed inter-state areas.

23. We shall strengthen and promote linkages among ASEAN institutional mechanisms in fighting against drug abuse and trafficking in order to eradicate drug production, processing, trafficking and use by the year 2020.

24. We shall, together, make sure that our people are assured of adequate medical care and access to essential medicines. We shall step up our cooperation in the control and prevention of communicable diseases, including HIV/AIDS.

25. So as to ensure the sustainability of our nations' development, the protection of the environment shall be an essential part of our economic activities. We shall consolidate and expand our gains in the control and prevention of transboundary pollution, especially the haze arising from land and forest fires.

26. We shall intensify individual and collective efforts to address transnational crimes such as drug trafficking, money laundering, terrorism, piracy, arms smuggling and trafficking in persons.

27. We shall fortify confidence in our nations by continuing to maintain friendly relations among us and fostering the security of our region.

28. Toward this end, we shall expedite the ratification of the Second Protocol to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia so as to enable non-regional states to accede to the Treaty at the earliest possible time. We shall intensify the consultations with the Nuclear-Weapon States with a view to their accession to the Protocol to the Treaty on the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone.

29. We shall endeavour to resolve outstanding problems and prevent the emergence of disputes in the ASEAN way and in accordance with international law and practice.

30. We shall promote efforts to settle disputes in the South China Sea by peaceful means in accordance with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, and in the spirit of the 1992 ASEAN Declaration on the South China Sea. We call on all parties concerned to exercise restraint and to refrain from taking actions that are inimical to the peace, security and stability of Southeast Asia and the Asia-Pacific region.

31. We welcome efforts to develop long-term constructive relationship among the major powers. ASEAN shall enhance its dialogue partnership and cooperation with other countries as well as with other regional and international organisations, on the basis of equality, non-interference, mutual respect and mutual benefit.

32. We shall strengthen the ASEAN Regional Forum as a forum for political and security dialogue and cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region, ASEAN leadership of ARF shall continue to be exercised and enhanced, while ASEAN solidarity and coordination in ARF shall be intensified.

33. As a step to enhance ASEAN's investment and trade environment, a package of bold measures and privileges will be granted to traders and investors. In this regard, we ask our Ministers to commence implementation of the package of bold measures starting from 1 January 1999.

34. We hereby adopt the Hanoi Plan of Action and charge our Ministers and Senior Officials to begin its implementation. We agree to conduct a review of the progress in 2001, three years after the adoption of the Hanoi Plan of Action.

Done at Hanoi on the Sixteenth Day of December, Nineteen Hundred and Ninety Eight.