Further Deepening ASEAN-EU Strategic Partnership

10:10:45 AM | 12/20/2022

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh recently attended various activities within the framework of the Commemorative Summit on the 45th anniversary of ASEAN - EU dialogue relations in Brussels, Belgium.

European Council President Charles Michel (first from left) and European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen (first from right) welcome Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh to the ASEAN-EU commemorative summit

The year 2022 marks the 45th anniversary of ASEAN-EU Dialogue Relations (1977-2022). On this occasion, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) agreed with the European Union’s (EU) proposal to hold a commemorative summit to celebrate the 45th anniversary of ASEAN-EU relations in Brussels, Belgium on December 14, 2022.

This is the first time that ASEAN and the EU have coordinated to organize a commemorative summit on bilateral relations in the EU, attended by senior leaders of ASEAN and EU member countries, since the EU-ASEAN dialogue relationship was established in 1977 and especially after the two sides formed the strategic partnership in 2020.

The summit is of special significance and marks a milestone in the bilateral relationship of the two most successful regional blocs in the world.

After 45 years, ASEAN-EU relations have developed dynamically and expanded to various fields such as politics-security, economy-trade, culture-society and development cooperation.

Currently, the two sides are working together to implement the Action Plan for carrying out the ASEAN-EU Strategic Partnership for the 2023-2027 period.

On politics and security, the EU emphasized that ASEAN holds a central position in the EU's Cooperation Strategy in the Indo-Pacific, as announced in 2021, and it hopes to bolster extensive cooperation with ASEAN.

The EU is one of ASEAN's leading trade and development cooperation partners. According to ASEAN data, in 2021, the EU was ASEAN's third largest trading partner (after China and the United States) with a total two-way trade value of US$268.9 billion, 18.6% higher than a year earlier. The EU was the second largest foreign investor (after the United States) of ASEAN with a total investment fund of US$26.5 billion.

According to EU data, in 2021, ASEAN was the EU's third largest non-European trading partner (after China and the United States).

Regarding COVID-19 response coordination and post-pandemic recovery support, the EU was one of the first partners to actively boost cooperation with ASEAN in the COVID-19 response right from the outbreak.

At the summit, senior leaders in ASEAN and the EU looked back on and assessed the overall journey of the 45-year partnership and set forth important directions for the upcoming development of ASEAN-EU relations. At the same time, they spent time discussing regional and international issues of mutual concern.

The Vietnam-EU relationship has developed substantially in depth and in breadth in recent years. Vietnam is the first ASEAN country to have all frameworks for politics, economic, defense and security cooperation with the EU. There are many mechanisms for specialized cooperation, exchange of delegations and contacts at all levels, especially at a high level.

The EU is the third largest export market, the fifth largest import market and the sixth largest foreign investment source of Vietnam. Regarding development aid, the EU is one of Vietnam's largest non-refundable aid donors.

After more than two years of enforcing the European Union-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), the trade value reached more than US$52 billion in the first 10 months of 2022, making Vietnam the 14th largest trading partner of the EU. The two sides are celebrating the 10-year Vietnam-EU Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation (2012-2022).

The attendance of Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and leaders of ASEAN countries at the commemorative summit is of great significance, demonstrating the spirit of active, positive and responsible contribution of Vietnam to ASEAN and to the international community, especially in the context that the region and the world are facing many unpredictable developments and challenges today.

The trip has helped deepen the ASEAN-EU Strategic Partnership, the Vietnam-EU Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation, and Vietnam's relations with EU member states.

Source: Vietnam Business Forum