"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


[Place] Phnom Penh, Cambodia
[Date] November 12, 2022
[Source] Ministry or Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Notes] FINAL
[Full text]

1. The 25th ASEAN Plus Three (APT) Summit was held on 12 November 2022 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The Summit was chaired by Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, and attended by Heads of State/Government and High Representatives of ASEAN Member States, the People’s Republic of China, Japan, and the Republic of Korea (ROK). The Secretary-General of ASEAN, and the Secretary-General of the Trilateral Cooperation Secretariat (TCS) and the director of ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO) were also in attendance.

Review and Future Direction of APT Cooperation

2. We noted with satisfaction the progress in APT cooperation over the past 25 years and discussed its future direction. To this effect, we published the compilation of major APT documents to commemorate the 25th anniversary. We reaffirmed our commitment to further strengthening and deepening the APT process which plays a key role in regional community building efforts with ASEAN as the driving force. We further underlined the mutually reinforcing and complementary nature of the APT with other ASEAN-led frameworks. We also recognised the importance of the APT to ASEAN’s efforts towards realising the ASEAN Community Vision 2025, the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity (MPAC) 2025, the Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI) Work Plan IV (2021 -2025), and deeper regional integration in East Asia.

3. We were pleased with the further strengthening of APT cooperation and commended the substantial progress on the implementation of the APT Cooperation Work Plan (2018-2022). To maintain this positive momentum, we welcomed the adoption of the successor APT Cooperation Work Plan (2023-2027) at the 23rd APT Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on 4th August 2022 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

4. We acknowledged the significance of the APT in maintaining and enhancing peace, security, stability, and development in East Asia. We reaffirmed our commitment to strengthen dialogue and cooperation in combatting transnational crimes and addressing non-traditional security issues, such as trafficking in persons, cybercrime, countering terrorism and violent extremism, and illicit drug trafficking.

5. We underscored the importance of multilateralism, regionalism and international law in contributing to global and regional peace, stability and prosperity. We reaffirmed the importance of the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP) as a guide for ASEAN’s engagement in the wider Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean regions, and encouraged the enhancement and promotion of APT cooperation in ASEAN priority areas identified in the AOIP, namely maritime cooperation, connectivity, sustainable development, economic and other areas of cooperation to further promote mutual trust, mutual respect, and confidence as well as to contribute to peace and prosperity in the region.

6. We reaffirmed the crucial role of APT cooperation in combating the COVID-19 pandemic in the region and mitigating its socio-economic impacts. We acknowledged the support and contribution of the Plus Three countries to ASEAN Member States, and ASEAN’s initiatives in addressing COVID-19 which include, among others, the COVID-19 ASEAN Response Fund, and the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework (ACRF) and its Implementation Plan. We appreciated Japan’s contribution to the establishment of the ASEAN Centre for Public Health Emergencies and Emerging Diseases (ACPHEED), and China’s offer of Provisional Product List of the APT Reserve of Medical Supplies for Public Health Emergencies (APTRMS). We encouraged enhancing efforts towards setting up APTRMS to complement the ASEAN Regional Reserve of Medical Supplies (ARRMS).

7. We emphasised the need to strengthen APT collaboration in advancing the region’s recovery from the adverse socio-economic effects of the pandemic. In this regard, we welcomed the progress made in the implementation of the ASEAN Plus Three Economic Ministers’ Joint Statement on Mitigating the Economic Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic adopted on 4th June 2020 and the ASEAN Plus Three Plan of Action (APT POA) on Mitigating the Economic Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic which was endorsed at the 23rd AEM Plus Three Consultations on 28th August 2020. These efforts would further strengthen collaboration and cooperation between ASEAN and the Plus Three countries, as well as prepare the region for future challenges, and achieving post-pandemic economic recovery. We welcomed the endorsement of the ASEAN Plus Three Economic Cooperation Work Programme (ECWP) 2023-2024 by the ASEAN Plus Three Economic Ministers during the 25th AEM Plus Three Consultations on 17th September 2022, Siem Reap, Cambodia, which continued to provide positive outcomes in strengthening capacity for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), improving trade facilitation, promoting the development of digital economy, contributing to supply chain resilience, enhancing collaboration in joint research activities between APT research institutions, and pursuing cooperation in areas of mutual interest.

8. We underlined the importance of trade and investment relations between ASEAN and the Plus Three countries. In 2021, trade between ASEAN and the Plus Three countries recorded an increase of 25.1 per cent reaching a total value of USD 1.098 trillion. Meanwhile, total Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) flows from the Plus Three Countries into ASEAN were valued at USD 32.65 billion in 2021, accounting for 25.4 per cent of total FDI inflows into ASEAN.

9. We stressed the importance of keeping the markets open to strengthen the connectedness, resiliency and sustainability of regional logistics systems and supply chains and maintain the flow of essential goods and services including food, medicines, medical, and other essential supplies. We also underlined the need for maintaining necessary, strategic, and functional interconnectedness in the region by facilitating and strengthening the essential movement of people and goods for diplomatic, humanitarian, scientific, medical, technological, and business activities. We reiterated the need for the resumption of safe, secured, unimpeded, and essential travels to jumpstart the region’s economic recovery. We also discussed the need to identify joint activities that can be undertaken to promote business linkages among APT countries.

10. We expressed our appreciation to the East Asia Business Council (EABC) for their support and cooperation as well as valuable inputs in advancing regional economic integration, and urged the EABC to continue playing a bigger role in this respect. We encouraged the EABC to promote the utilisation of Free Trade Arrangements through capacity building and information dissemination to enterprises, particularly MSMEs and contribute to the acceleration of digital transformation by sharing expertise and promoting upskilling and reskilling of ASEAN’s workforce and MSMEs to fully benefit the opportunities in the digital era.

11. We reaffirmed our strong commitment to the open, free, fair, inclusive, equitable, transparent, and non-discriminatory rules-based multilateral trading system with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) at its core. We also expressed our support for an enhanced regional economic integration. In this regard, we are satisfied with the early entry into force of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Agreement as this reflects our strong commitment to uphold a fair and open multilateral trading system. The full implementation of the RCEP Agreement will provide a powerful stimulus to the post-COVID-19 socio-economic recovery efforts, incentivize new trade and investment opportunities, as well as help safeguard regional supply chains.

12. We acknowledged the key leadership role of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the fundamental role of the United Nations system in catalysing and coordinating the comprehensive global response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We recognised the importance of following up on the World Health Assembly Resolution (WHA) 74/7 in its entirety, including the Assembly’s call to strengthen the global, regional, national and subnational pandemic preparedness and response to health emergencies required under the International Health Regulations (2005), and supported the WHA Decision 74/16 Assembly’s decision to consider the development of a WHO convention, agreement or other international instruments on pandemic preparedness and response to health emergencies.

13. We commended the progress made in the implementation of the ASEAN Plus Three Cooperation Strategy (APTCS) on Food, Agriculture and Forestry 2016-2025. We called for the enhancement of APT cooperation in ensuring food security, particularly in the post-pandemic period, including through the effective implementation of the ASEAN Plus Three Emergency Rice Reserve (APTERR) and the ASEAN Food Security Information System (AFSIS), to overcome possible food shortages as well as strengthen the resiliency and sustainability of regional food supply chains and logistics system. We appreciated China’s donation of USD 4 million to the APTERR fund from 2023 through 2027 in the form of stockpiled cash designated for Tier-3. In addition, we encouraged the APT Countries to enhance cooperation on regional activities to promote green, sustainable and circular agriculture, and application of biological control agents (BCA) in aquaculture and animal husbandry, build resilient and sustainable agriculture and food systems and develop climate change adaptation and mitigation, promote public- private partnership, sustainable forest management, application of smart and digital agriculture, irrigation and water management, bio-energy, and greenhouse gas mitigation in irrigated rice systems.

14. We were pleased to note that the ASEAN Plus Three Tourism Cooperation has incorporated the key strategic actions from the post-COVID-19 Recovery Plan for ASEAN Tourism into the APT Tourism Cooperation Work Plan 2021-2025 to further strengthen the cooperation among the APT Countries in recovery efforts. We encouraged the APT Countries to further engage all relevant stakeholders, including the private sector, to speed up the reviving of the tourism sector as soon as possible.

15. We noted the convening of the 19th ASEAN+3 Ministers on Energy Meeting (19th AMEM+3) and were pleased to note the commitment of the AMEM+3 to pursue post- pandemic economic recovery towards sustainable development and growth by accelerating innovation and scale-up of investments to improve and sustain clean and modern energy infrastructure and supply chains towards advancing a just realistic, and resilient energy transition and the importance of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). We also acknowledged the need to explore a variety of options and utilise all fuels and technologies to ensure secure and stable supply of energy for achieving both goals of economic growth from the COVID-19 pandemic and lowering greenhouse gas emissions, and consented that there is no single pathway to achieve low-carbon economy, but rather there are diverse paths for each country. We further encouraged enhancing APT energy cooperation through regional interconnectivity in line with the ASEAN Plan of Action for Energy Cooperation (APAEC) Phase II: 2021-2025, following the successful commencement of the Lao PDR-Thailand-Malaysia-Singapore-Power Integration Project in June 2022.

16. We are encouraged to explore alternative approaches for sustainable recovery, including through cooperation on the Bio-Circular-Green Economy Model to help address common global challenges such as global warming and climate change to ensure that growth can be achieved in a sustainable and balanced manner.

17. We commended the continued efforts of APT on pushing forward the digital transformation agenda to strengthen the region’s supply chain resilience and driving the recovery of the post-COVID-19 era. We are pleased to take note on the digital economy workplan and activities that was implemented in 2021-2022 and the workplan for 2023 - 2024 focusing on enhancing APT’s capacity to facilitate the cross-border data transfer, development of digital connectivity and strengthening of consumer and business trust in the digital economy. We also acknowledged the continued support of APT on the ASEAN Digital Integration Framework Action Plan (DIFAP), through capacity-building activities on the use of digital technologies and the mid-term report on ASEAN Plus Three research project for closing the digital divide in MSMEs.

18. We welcomed the progress of the first ASEAN Plus Three Research Project for Closing the Digital Divide in MSMEs undertaken by the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) and the ASEAN Secretariat. The initiative highlights the importance of digital tools and solutions in narrowing the gaps in infrastructure connectivity, access to market, digital skills, and financing capabilities of MSMEs. We underscored the critical role of digitalisation in the APT region’s post-pandemic economic recovery, particularly in building the resilience of MSMEs by enabling them to develop digital start-ups and adopt digital solutions for innovation and entrepreneurship.

19. We noted the region’s increased reliance on the digital economy during the pandemic. To this end, we stressed the need for the region to identify challenges and opportunities as the region’s economies prepare themselves for the advent of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR), and to harness the latter as a tool to foster APT’s economic recovery.

20. We stressed the need to assist people and businesses affected by the impact of COVID- 19, especially MSMEs, start-ups and vulnerable groups, including through facilitating their integration into the digital economy, access to digital infrastructure and use of technologies to allow the MSMEs to maintain operations and enhance business competitiveness. We reaffirmed our continuing support for future initiatives aimed at preparing MSMEs for the advent of the 4IR.

21. We recognised the potentials of emerging technologies presented by the on-going digital transformation to boost the region’s long-term competitiveness and improve the livelihood of its people. We supported the development of digital economy and innovative growth to enhance regional resilience. We were pleased to note the strong interest of the Plus Three countries in advancing smart and sustainable cities development in the region through the ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN) and ASEAN Sustainable Urbanisation Strategy (ASUS) and looked forward to more partnerships supporting these initiatives.

22. We acknowledged the need to explore cooperation in intellectual property between ASEAN and Plus Three countries, recognising the importance of promoting the protection of intellectual property through cooperation to contribute to the balanced growth of the region.

23. We underlined the importance of the ASEAN+3 Finance Process in enhancing regional economic and financial stability. We welcomed the continued commitment of the ASEAN+3 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors to further strengthen the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralization (CMIM) as an effective and reliable regional self- help mechanism and an important component of the Global Financial Safety Net. We also noted the outcome of the 25th ASEAN+3 Finance Ministers’ and Central Bank Governors’ Meeting held on 12 May 2022, which confirmed to continue working together to further enhance regional financial cooperation, including through the CMIM, the ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO), and the Asian Bond Markets Initiative (ABMI), as well as the ASEAN+3 Future Initiative including Financial Digitalization. We welcomed the continued efforts of the Southeast Asia Disaster Risk Insurance Facility (SEADRIF) in strengthening the financial resilience of ASEAN member states against climate and disaster risks.

24. We commended the efforts of the ASEAN-China Centre, ASEAN-Japan Centre and ASEAN-Korea Centre to promote trade, investment, culture, tourism, media, and people-to-people exchanges between and among ASEAN and the Plus Three countries. We were pleased to note that the three Centres had established regular consultation meetings and called for the Centres to enhance linkages among them by exploring possible joint projects in areas of common interest.

25. We were pleased with the progress in implementing the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity (MPAC) 2025 and looked forward to enhancing cooperation between ASEAN and the Plus Three countries in the strategic area of sustainable and quality infrastructure, digital innovation, seamless logistics, regulatory excellence, and people mobility. We reiterated the importance of promoting synergies between MPAC 2025 and other key connectivity initiatives through the Connecting the Connectivities Initiative and called on the Plus Three countries to cooperate with ASEAN on activities that will enhance the implementation of MPAC 2025, thus contributing towards greater connectivity in the East Asia region.

26. We noted the successful convening of the 13th ASEAN Connectivity Symposium, with support from the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA), and the ASEAN Connectivity Coordinating Committee (ACCC) Consultations with Dialogue Partners and Other External Partners on Connectivity, on 3 and 4 October 2022, respectively.

27. We emphasised the importance of cultural exchanges and people-to-people links to heighten awareness and foster intercultural understanding and ASEAN identity in the region. In this regard, we encouraged the effective implementation of the projects under the ASEAN Plus Three Work Plan on Cooperation in Culture and Arts 2022-2025. We also looked forward to greater cooperation in culture and arts fields to promote active exchange among APT countries through various channels.

28. We reaffirmed our commitment in implementing the priority areas of APT health cooperation, which includes universal health coverage, utilising digital health for healthcare, prevention and control of communicable and non-communicable diseases, traditional and complementary medicine, health and active ageing, human resources for health, responding to communicable and emerging diseases and food safety, as well as issues related to antimicrobial resistance, ending all forms of malnutrition, and health emergencies.

29. We commended the efforts of the APT Health Ministers Meeting and noted the multi- sectoral and multi-stakeholder collaborative activities to be undertaken in promoting healthy and active ageing as complemented by the establishment of the ASEAN Centre for Active Ageing and Innovation (ACAI) in which the agreement entered into force in 2020. We acknowledged the efforts in strengthening the healthcare and welfare system under the Asia Health and Wellbeing Initiative (AHWIN). We noted the commitment of the APT health sectors in continuing efforts on the implementation of the International Health Regulations (IHR) (2005) and the Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases and Public Health Emergencies (APSED III) to enhance ASEAN Member States and Plus Three countries’ capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to public health threats.

30. We welcomed the continued commitment of the APT Health Ministers made at their meeting via videoconference on 7 April 2020 in enhancing free, open, transparent and timely sharing of information, data and expertise on COVID-19 prevention, detection, control and response measures, epidemiologic surveillance updates, risk assessment results, epidemiological and clinical studies on the virus and the disease, treatment experience, including the application of traditional medicine and technical guidelines. We also recognised the importance of cooperation in development, manufacturing and distribution of diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines, adhering to the objectives of efficiency, safety, equal accessibility and affordability, as well as to consider ASEAN’s potential as a regional vaccine hub. We noted the role of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) and the International Vaccine Institute (IVI), as well as the COVID- 19 Vaccine Global Access (COVAX) Facility and Advance Market Commitment in developing and delivering vaccines. We also emphasised the need to expand vaccine cooperation, including through vaccine research, development as well as procurement, and promote vaccine multilateralism, equitable access to and accelerate production and distribution of safe, effective, quality and affordable vaccines among APT countries, sharing data on COVID-19 vaccines effectiveness, side effects and effective strategies for vaccinations, as well as the study of genome sequences, given the rise in COVID- 19 variants. In this connection, we looked forward to the role of the WHO Global Biomanufacturing Training Hub established in the ROK. We encouraged continuing commitment, after overcoming the challenges related to COVID-19 and revitalising national health systems, on collaboration in learning from the regional and national experiences in responding to COVID-19 challenges, including sharing expert knowledge in management and treatment of COVID-19 patients, as well as to further strengthen and institutionalise preparedness, surveillance, prevention, detection and response mechanisms of the ASEAN and Plus Three countries on public health emergencies and other crises.

31. We recognised the importance of mental health as a critical public health issue which has been exacerbated by disasters and public health emergencies and other emerging and unprecedented crises, including the COVID-19 pandemic. We commended the priority accorded by the ASEAN Health Sector in the promotion of mental health through its ASEAN Post-2015 Health Development Agenda. In addition, we adopted the APT Leaders’ Statement on Cooperation on Mental Health Amongst Adolescents and Young Children and looked forward to the conduct of a regional workshop on the sharing of best practices on mental health promotion in school settings amongst APT countries in 2023.

32. We reiterated the commitment to advance cooperation in promoting sustainable, inclusive and innovative development, as well as in strengthening cooperation with all stakeholders, including the private sector, to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We supported ASEAN’s efforts in narrowing the development gap and promoting sustainable and equitable development across the ASEAN Community including through aligning sub-regional growth with the comprehensive development of ASEAN. We reaffirmed our commitment to forge closer cooperation in poverty alleviation and welcomed the continued progress of the East Asia Poverty Reduction Cooperation Initiative. We called for the development of collaborative projects to protect and conserve the environment and biodiversity; promote sustainable use of natural resources, including water resource management and sustainable development of mineral resources, and to address the impact of climate change and the issue of marine plastic debris. In this regard, we welcomed the continuous contribution of the Plus Three countries to reduce marine debris through the ASEAN Plus Three Marine Plastic Debris Cooperative Action Initiative. We welcomed in particular activities of the Regional Knowledge Centre for Marine Plastic Debris (RKC-MPD) of the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) to address the marine plastic issue, as well as collective efforts towards the achievement of Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP). We encouraged the activities of the Private Sector Platform by RKC-MPD to promote the collaboration between policymakers and business sectors to tackle the marine plastic issue.

33. We were encouraged by the progress of cooperation on social welfare and development through the SOMSWD+3 platform. We reaffirm our commitment to forging ahead with the implementation of the ASEAN Regional Framework and ActionPlan on Implementing the ASEAN Declaration on Strengthening Social Protection and the ASEAN Enabling Masterplan 2025: Mainstreaming the Rights of Persons with Disabilities with the emphasis on strengthening social protection systems for vulnerable groups to ensure access to much needed public goods and services. We looked forward to the roll-out of the Ha Noi Declaration on Strengthening Social WorkTowards Cohesive and Responsive ASEAN Community particularly the development and implementation of the declaration’s roadmap. We likewise looked forward to the development of regional plans of action to implement the Declaration on the Protection of Children from all Forms of Online Exploitation and Abuse in ASEAN, and the ASEAN Declaration on the Rights of Children in the Context of Migration.

34. We reaffirmed our commitment in promoting gender equality and empowerment of women and girls through the ACW+3 platform. We commended the continued efforts of ACW to forge ahead with gender mainstreaming efforts across the ASEAN Community Pillars and with advancing Women, Peace and Security. We looked forward to the finalisation of the ASEAN Gender Mainstreaming Strategic Framework and the finalisation of the Regional Plan of Action on Women, Peace and Security in ASEAN. We shared the need to work closely to strengthen gender data and statistics for evidence-informed policy and program.

35. We underscored the crucial importance of education for human resource development as well as social and economic well-being in post-pandemic recovery. In this regard, we noted the successful convening of the 6th APT Education Ministers Meeting, co-chaired by Viet Nam and China, held Hybrid at Hanoi, Viet Nam and commended the APT Education Ministers’ commitment on “joint efforts to reimagine learning and building resilience of education systems in the ASEAN and beyond in the new context”. We encouraged the enhancement of cooperation in the Campus Asia Program and welcomed the initiatives of the Working Group on Student Mobility and Quality Assurance of Higher Education among APT countries such as (i) the adoption of Guide on Making Information Available to Promote Student Mobility in ASEAN Plus Three Region and (ii) the finalisation of the APT Joint Guidelines on the Institutional Provision for New Modes of Higher Education in the ASEAN Plus Three Region, to develop an enabling environment with supporting instruments that would facilitate student mobility with quality assurance among the APT countries. We looked forward to the convening of the 9th APTWG Meeting to advance the agenda on student mobility and quality assurance. We also recognised the important contributions of scholarships to student mobility and people-to-people connectivity, and appreciated the long-standing support of the People’s Republic of China, Japan and the Republic of Korea (ROK) in this area. We reaffirmed the importance to strengthen and deepen the functional cooperation under the APT framework and the reinforcement of the implementation of the APT Plan of Action on Education 2018-2025. We emphasised the role of APT cooperation in addressing the learning crisis and building resilience in education in the post-COVID-19 era in the key priorities such as school reopening, learning recovery and continuity, the quality of higher education among ASEAN+3 countries, the mobility of students, teachers, intellectuals and education officials at the level of general education, higher education and vocational and technical education in ASEAN+3 countries and the cooperation between ASEAN+3 countries and other educational institutions.

36. We noted with satisfaction the implementation of APT Work Plan on Youth 2021-2025. We commended the longstanding efforts of the APT Senior Officials Meeting on Youth and relevant ASEAN entities in providing greater access for youth in APT countries to participate and remain engaged in our ASEAN Community building and people-to- people exchange endeavours through various annual youth exchanges, capacity building, as well as community immersion programmes.

37. We commended the steady progress of implementation of the ASEAN Plus Three Cooperation on Civil Service Matters (ACCSM+3) Work Plan 2021-2025 that covers areas of mutual interests including e-governance, human resource management and human resource development, productivity in public sector, good governance, public sector reform, local administration capacity building and cooperation, and research and innovation. We looked forward to the implementation of the ASEAN Declaration on Fostering Civil Service’s Adaptability to the New Challenges that was adopted by ACCSM last year. On this note, we welcomed the initiatives supported by the APT Cooperation Fund that sought to strengthen the overall capabilities of the ASEAN Civil Services, including the ongoing Baseline Study on Governance Systems among APT Countries and the ASEAN Guidelines on Public Service Delivery. We looked forward to the study visits on public service delivery to ROK and China as implementations of the ASEAN Guidelines. We looked forward to the utilisation of the ASEAN Cooperation on Civil Service Matters Framework of Strategic Partnerships that promoting good governance principles, agile civil service in digital era and other areas of mutual interest pertaining to civil service matters. We

38. We noted the strengthening of the APT cooperation in the labour sector through the effective implementation of the first APT Senior Labour Officials’ Meeting (SLOM+3) Work Plan 2021-2025 through practical activities and projects that covered the areas of human resources development, inclusive growth, sustainable development as a response to the ASEAN economic integration, social dialogue, and occupational safety and health in the workplace, and social protection. We appreciated the support of the Republic of Korea (ROK) to the pilot implementation of the ASEAN Guidelines on Gender Mainstreaming into Labour and Employment Policies to Promote Decent Work for All, the completed Project on Enhancing the Competitiveness of ASEAN Human Resources through Responsive TVET Curriculum supported by Involvement of Industries and Labour Market Information, and the ongoing ASCC Research and Development Platforms for the Future of Work and Education. We appreciated the continuous support of Japan to the ASEAN projects, particularly in the implementation of the Follow-up Analysis of the ACMW Self-Assessment of the ASEAN Forum on Migrant Labour (AFML) Recommendations. Furthermore, we noted with appreciation service sector in widening and deepening partnerships with relevant stakeholders, will further guide the civil the Phase 4 of the Promoting and Building Social Protection in Asia Project which aimed to extend social security coverage and improve the implementation of the insurance scheme and the linkage to employment services in the region. We also welcomed the successful convening of the 19th ASEAN-Japan High Level Officials Meeting (HLOM) on Caring Societies. We also appreciated the support of China, in collaboration with the ASEAN TVET Council (ATC), in the conduct of the ASEAN+3 E-Forum on Skills Development on 20th - 21th September 2022 through the ILO/China Partnership Programme. We also welcomed the support of China to the Programme Strengthening Skills Development in Cambodia, Lao PDR and Myanmar through South-South and Triangular Cooperation, which aims to improve the employability of workers and increase productivity of enterprises through skills development and institutional capacity building. We supported the ongoing implementation of initiatives in the Roadmap of ASEAN Declaration on Human Resources Development for the Changing World of Work and welcomed the collaboration with the APT countries, especially in promoting lifelong learning.

39. We encouraged the enhancement of cooperation on disaster management and emergency response, particularly to support the implementation of the AADMER Work Programme 2021-2025 and the Declaration on One ASEAN One Response: ASEAN Responding to Disasters as One in the Region and Outside the Region, by strengthening cooperation on policy coordination, exchanges of information, best practices and experiences, and capacity building through joint training and exercises to reduce disaster risks and losses address disruptions caused by disasters to the socio- economic development, build resilience to disasters and realise the ASEAN Vision 2025 on Disaster Management which, among others, envisions ASEAN to be the global leader in disaster management.

40. We also underscored the importance of forging closer cooperation in other areas such as science, technology and innovation, media, energy security, and minerals. In this connection, we welcomed the adoption of the APT Cooperation Work Plan (ASOMM+3 Work Plan) for 2022-2025 to support the promotion of ASEAN investments in all components of the minerals value chain and upgrade human, institutional and technical capacities of APT countries in minerals governance towards sustainable minerals development. In addition, we encouraged the APT countries to explore closer cooperation in other areas such as supporting MSMEs, environment, climate change, digital transformation, cyber security, data protection, human resource development, women empowerment and gender equality, disaster management and narrowing the development gap.

41. We noted the strengthening of the APT cooperation in science, technology and innovation (STI) through the implementation of the ASEAN Plus Three Junior Science Odyssey; the ASEAN+3 Student Camp and the ASEAN+3 Teacher Workshop for the Gifted in Science. We commended concerted effort from APT nations to provide dedicated platform for the gifted students in science and we further encouraged APT nations to explore other STI cooperation by leveraging on the ASEAN Innovation Roadmap 2019-2025.

42. 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 provide recommendations for further deepening East Asia cooperation. In this regard, we welcomed the convening of the 20th EAF under the theme “25th Anniversary of ASEAN Plus Three Cooperation: Recovering Together, Growing Together toward Inclusive, Equitable and Sustainable Development in East Asia”, to be tentatively hosted on 19th - 20th December 2022 by Viet Nam.

43. We also recognised the important contributions of the Network of East Asia Think-Tanks (NEAT) towards APT cooperation. We welcomed the outcomes of the 35th NEAT Country Coordinators’ Meeting (NEAT-CCM) on 27th April 2022 and 36th NEAT-CCM on 6th September 2022, and the six NEAT working group meetings on various topics held this year, which advocated regional preparedness and resilience in light of the COVID- 19 pandemic, with a focus on helping MSMEs and working towards sustainable development in the region.

Regional and International Issues

Developments in Myanmar

44. We extensively discussed the recent developments in Myanmar and expressed deep concerns over the prolonged political crisis in the country, including the execution of four opposition activists and the continued violence, which are worsening the humanitarian situation throughout the country. We welcomed the efforts to help address the situation including visits to Myanmar by Samdech Techo Hun Sen, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, in January 2022, and by H.E. Mr. Prak Sokhonn, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the Kingdom of Cambodia, as the Special Envoy of the ASEAN Chair on Myanmar in March and late June to early July 2022. We were deeply disappointed about the limited progress in and lack of commitment of the Myanmar military authorities to the timely and complete implementation of the Five-Point Consensus. We reiterated our commitment to peace and stability in the region and expressed ASEAN's readiness to assist Myanmar in a positive, peaceful, and constructive manner, including in the delivery of humanitarian assistance. In this regard, we noted the adoption of the ASEAN Leaders’ Review and Decision on the Implementation of the Five-Point Consensus. We supported that the Special Envoy of the ASEAN Chair on Myanmar shall engage with Myanmar relevant stakeholders at the earliest.

Developments in the Korean Peninsula

45. Some APT countries expressed grave concerns over the recent surge in DPRK’s Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) testing and ballistic missile launches and its escalatory and destabilising rhetoric on the possible use of nuclear weapons. This worrisome development increases tension in the Korean Peninsula and threatens peace and stability in the region and in the world. We stressed the importance of continued peaceful dialogue amongst all parties concerned including ROK’s effort to achieve a denuclearised, peaceful, and prosperous Korean Peninsula. We called on the DPRK to fully comply with all relevant UNSC Resolutions (UNSCRs), reiterated commitment to the full implementation of all relevant UNSCRs, and noted international efforts to bring about the complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula in a peaceful manner. We reiterated the readiness to play a constructive role, including through utilising ASEAN-led platforms in promoting a conducive atmosphere to peaceful dialogue amongst the parties concerned. We noted the views expressed by some APT countries on the importance of addressing issues of humanitarian concerns of the international community, including the immediate resolution of the abductions issue.