"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] CHAIRMAN'S STATEMENT OF THE 19TH ASEAN PLUS THREE SUMMIT, Turning Vision into Reality for a Dynamic ASEAN Community

[Place] Vientiane, Lao PDR
[Date] September 7, 2016
[Source] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Notes] Final
[Full text]

The 19th ASEAN Plus Three (APT) Summit was held on 7 September 2016 in Vientiane. The Summit was chaired by H.E. Thongloun SISOULITH, Prime Minister of the Lao DPR. The Summit was attended by all Heads of State/Government of the Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the People's Republic of China, Japan and the Republic of Korea. The Secretary- General of ASEAN was also in attendance.

2. We noted with satisfaction the progress in ASEAN Plus Three cooperation over the past 19 years and reiterated our commitment to further strengthening and deepening the APT process as a driving force for enhanced peace, security and prosperity in the East Asian region, with the long term goal of building an East Asian community. We also shared the views that APT would continue to support the implementation of the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 to pave the way towards deeper regional integration in East Asia. We recognized ASEAN Centrality in the evolving regional architecture through ASEAN-led process in the ASEAN Plus Three, the East Asia Summit, the ASEAN Regional Forum, and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

3. We noted with appreciation the substantive progress of the implementation of the ASEAN Plus Three Cooperation Work Plan (2013-2017) and the decision of the APT Ministers' Meeting in July 2016 to task Committee of Permanent Representatives and Ambassadors of the Plus Three countries to ASEAN in Jakarta (CPR Plus Three) to formulate a successor Work Plan. We looked forward to the adoption of the successor Work Plan in 2017.

4. We commended the efforts and work carried out by the CPR Plus Three, sectoral bodies and relevant stakeholders in following up to the recommendations of the East Asia Vision Group (EAVG) II, which suggested the realization of an East Asia Economic Community by 2020. We noted with appreciation the Progress Report on the Status of Action Plans for Recommendations of the EAVG II, which outlined substantive progress in the development and implementation of the 21 selected EAVG II recommendations.

5. We stressed the importance of APT cooperation in maintaining and promoting peace, stability and development in East Asian region. In this context, we decided to further strengthen cooperation in both traditional and non-traditional security issues such as terrorism and violent extremism, transnational crime, cyber security, maritime security, climate change, disaster management, sustainable water resource management, food security, energy security, and pandemic diseases and trade- related capacity building.

6. We noted that the trade and investment relations between ASEAN and the Plus Three Countries remain strong. In 2015, ASEAN total trade with the Plus Three Countries amounted to USD 708.6 billion, accounting for 31.1 per cent of ASEAN's total trade. Total Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) flows from the Plus Three Countries to ASEAN stood at USD 31 billion in 2015, accounting for 26.0 per cent of the total FDI inflow to ASEAN.

7. We noted the continuous endeavour in advancing the progress of the RCEP negotiations. Considering the immense potential of the RCEP to stimulate global trade and growth, we urged RCEP participating countries to intensify efforts toward achieving a modern, comprehensive, high-quality, and mutually beneficial economic partnership agreement.

8. We acknowledged the efforts made by the East Asia Business Council (EABC) in promoting economic integration in the region through private sector engagement, including the survey report on optimal regional free trade agreement (FTA) formation in East Asia by Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) and The Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), MSME capacity building and facilitating e-commerce development in East Asia. We noted the importance of continuous business engagements including conducting appropriate studies. We also welcomed the collaboration among the EABC, ASEAN-China Centre, ASEAN- Japan Centre, and ASEAN-Korea Centre to broaden the cooperation in the context of ASEAN Plus Three in order to increase trade and investment.

9. We acknowledged the outcomes of the 19th ASEAN+3 Finance Ministers' and Central Bank Governors' Meeting to further strengthen the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralisation (CMIM) as an essential part of the regional financial safety net and to study how the CMIM can be better integrated with the global financial safety net.

10. We welcomed the establishment of ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO) as an international organisation on 9 February 2016 to enhance its function as the independent regional surveillance unit and further contribute towards the macroeconomic and financial stability of the ASEAN+3 region by operating as an independent regional surveillance unit and supporting CMIM implementation.

11. We were pleased to note the finalization of the New Medium-Term Road Map of the Asian Bond Markets Initiatives (ABMI) for the next three years, which is expected to continue fostering the development of local currency bond markets in order to promote financial stability and meet the long term-investment needs of the region.

12. We welcomed the signing of the Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) on ASEAN Plus Three Tourism Cooperation, which serves as the key instrument for more action-oriented cooperation, encouraging APT countries to enhance facilitation of travel and tourist visits, development of quality tourism and strengthening linkages and cooperation among education and training institutions. We noted that the MOC would be implemented through conducting joint projects, programmes and activities.

13. We appreciated the progress made under ASEAN Ministers on Agriculture and Forestry (AMAF) Plus Three cooperation in the area of agriculture, fisheries, livestock and forestry sectors. We noted that Thailand has granted the ASEAN Plus Three Emergency Rice Reserve APTERR Secretariat legal personality and privileges to support its role in enhancing food security. We also welcomed the progress made under the (APTERR) and the ASEAN Food Security Information System (AFSIS). We appreciated the assistances for establishing Real Time ASEAN+3 Food Security Information Network and Developing Human Resources provided by the ROK. We reiterated the importance to implement activities under the ASEAN Plus Three Bioenergy and Food Security Framework 2015-2025.

14. We acknowledged the progress of the APT on energy cooperation and appreciated the continued support offered by the Plus Three countries towards the development of an effective energy security policies, specifically in the areas of energy efficiency and conservation, renewable energy technologies, emergency response mechanisms, and capacity building initiatives for civilian nuclear energy programme, and welcomed the program proposed by China to enhance capacity building on clean energy with ASEAN Member States. We also welcomed the plans to cooperate in developing customized energy safety management systems for ASEAN Member States to ensure energy safety policy and effective accident related management in the region and in this regard, we welcomed the new initiative extended by the ROK on Improving Energy Safety Management System for ASEAN Member.

15. We were pleased to note that the implementation of various initiatives of the ASEAN Plus Three Centre for the Gifted in Science (ACGS) continues to be sustained with successful conduct of the 7th ASEAN Plus Three Teacher Workshop and Student Camp, and the 5th ASEAN Plus Three Junior Science Odyssey.

16. The ASEAN Leaders appreciated the Plus Three countries' support for enhancing connectivity within ASEAN and the region, and looked forward to their continued support for the implementation of the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025. Noting the importance of both financing mobilisation and quality infrastructure in moving the ASEAN Connectivity agenda forward, we welcomed the progress of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) as well as Expanded Partnership for Quality Infrastructure to address infrastructure-financing needs and to promote quality infrastructure investment in the region.

17. We reaffirmed our commitment to advancing the complementarity between the implementation of UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 to uplift the living standards of people in ASEAN and the Plus Three countries over the next decades. In this regard, we adopted the APT Leaders' Statement on Promoting Sustainable Development Cooperation.

18. We recognised the growing trend of ageing populations in the region and the need to address the challenges promoting the quality of life and well-being of older people in a holistic manner and through partnership with relevant stakeholders, we therefore adopted the APT Statement on Active Ageing to promote enhanced cooperation to achieve this goal.

19. We reaffirmed the need to promote quality assurance in higher education amongst the ASEAN Plus Three countries and welcomed the approval of the ASEAN Plus Three Guidelines on Student Exchange and Mobility with the aim of promoting the development of higher education in the ASEAN Plus Three countries through greater promotion of student exchanges and mobility supported by quality assurance mechanisms.

20. We acknowledged that the ASEAN Post 2015 Health Development Agenda for 2016 to 2020 included the priority areas of collaboration with the Plus Three Countries on the areas of universal health coverage, non-communicable diseases, traditional medicine, active ageing, human resource development in health, and responding to communicable and emerging health threats.

21. We noted the successful convening of the 9th ASEAN Plus Three Labour Ministers Meeting (ALMM+3) on 16 May 2016 in Vientiane, Lao PDR and supported the conclusion of the joint statements. We reaffirmed our commitment to continuing cooperation and encouraged closer collaboration on ASEAN's new priorities and projects laid out in the ASEAN Labour Ministers' Work Programme 2016-2020. We looked forward to the implementation of the Action Plan on Strategic Programmes to Produce Qualified, Competent and Well-Equipped Labour Force to implement the East Asia Vision Group (EAVG) II recommendations.

22. We expressed the importance of the ASEAN Conference on Civil Service Matters Plus Three (ACCSM Plus Three) cooperation in strengthening capacity of civil service. We noted the successful completion of the Study Visit to the Plus Three Countries on Productivity and Innovation Focusing on Performance Management. We looked forward to the commencement of the Study Visit to the Plus Three Countries on Public Administration and Human Resource Management in October 2016 in China. We underscored the commitment to continuing our cooperation on civil service and we looked forward to the official adoption of the ACCSM Plus Three Work Plan 2016-2020 at the upcoming 3rd Heads of Civil Service Meeting for ACCSM Plus Three in November 2016 in Manila, the Philippines.

23. We noted with satisfaction the progress made in cooperation on social welfare and development, particularly in promoting the welfare of older persons through exchanges and learning of good practices from one another on community-based services for older persons and enhancing age-friendly policy and programme environment. We looked forward to continuing our partnership on enhancing the welfare of older persons, and broadening the areas of cooperation to include the promotion of the welfare of persons with disabilities and other areas of mutual interest, as guided by the goals embodied in the Strategic Framework on Social Welfare and Development 2016-2020.

24. We noted the progress in our cooperation on promoting rural development through platforms that provided opportunities between leaders in our rural communities. We welcomed the progress made by China, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar in implementing the East Asia Poverty Reduction Initiative, which has positively contributed to narrowing the development gap among regional countries. We looked forward to continuing the efforts to enhance such exchanges, as well as to expand our partnership in areas of mutual interest such as achieving food security and agriculture development, promoting the resilience of rural communities from the adverse impacts of climate change, and exploring suitable adaptive measures, as guided by the goals reflected in the Framework Action Plan on Rural Development and Poverty Eradication 2016-2020.

25. We acknowledged the important contribution of the East Asia Forum (EAF) as a Track 1.5 level platform for government, business, academia and think tanks to contribute to deepening East Asia cooperation. We noted the outcome of the 14th EAF in Siem Reap, Cambodia on 9-10 June 2016 with the theme "Deepening East Asia Integration towards East Asia Economic Community" and welcomed China's proposal to host the 15th EAF in 2017.

26. We recognised the contribution of the Network of East Asia Think-Tanks (NEAT) in realising the shared vision of building an East Asian Economic Community and welcomed the successful convening of the 24th Country Coordinator Meeting (CCM) of NEAT in March 2016 and the 25th NEAT CCM/14th Annual Conference under the theme of "Crisis Management" in Thailand. We also noted NEAT Memorandum No. 13 submitted for further consideration by relevant agencies.

27. The ASEAN Leaders noted the explanation by the Plus three countries side that the 8th Trilateral Foreign Ministers' Meeting, was successfully held in Tokyo, Japan on 24 August 2016 and expressed the view that the positive momentum in the trilateral cooperation would contribute to the promotion and maintenance of peace, stability and prosperity in the region, and lead to the next Trilateral Summit which is to be held in Japan.

28. We discussed the developments on the Korean Peninsula and underlined the importance of maintaining peace, stability and security in the region. We expressed serious concerns over the recent developments on the Korean Peninsula, including the nuclear test and launches using ballistic missile technology by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), which are in violation of the relevant United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions. We highlighted the importance of trust- building activities on the Peninsula, and the need to fully comply with all relevant UNSC resolutions, including UNSC resolution 2270 and for all parties to comply with commitments under the 19 September 2005 Joint Statement of the Six-Party Talks. We underlined the importance of creating necessary conditions for the early resumption of the Six-Party Talks, which would help pave the way toward peaceful denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.

29. We noted that next year is the 20th anniversary of APT and looked forward to having commemorative activities to celebrate the anniversary.