The meeting was co-chaired by Deputy Secretary-General for ASEAN Political-Security Community Michael Tene, and Head of the Asia-Pacific Division of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of the Swiss Confederation Heinrich Schellenberg.

Participant at the meeting (Photo:

Noting the progress made in the implementation of the ASEAN-Switzerland Sectoral Dialogue Partnership: Practical Cooperation Areas (PCA) 2017-2021, the meeting underscored both sides’ commitment to effectively implement the new PCA 2022-2026. The latest PCA will continue to set out the overall framework and priorities for the ASEAN-Switzerland cooperation in the next five years.

ASEAN and Switzerland explored opportunities to further deepen cooperation in a number of important areas such as energy; tourism; science, technology and innovation; digital integration and e-commerce; cyber security; smart cities; biodiversity, environmental protection, climate change and circular economy; sustainable development; and public health.

They also exchanged views on the developments in ASEAN and Switzerland, including ASEAN’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, sustainable development agenda, and a number of regional and international issues. The meeting noted key outcomes of the 40th and 41st ASEAN Summits and Related Summits held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, and the theme and priorities of Indonesia’s Chairmanship of ASEAN in 2023.

The meeting highlighted that in implementing the PCA 2017-2021, Switzerland contributed nearly CHF30 million to support joint cooperative projects and activities between ASEAN and Switzerland in a range of areas including good governance, human rights, and peace processes; food, agriculture, and forestry; economic cooperation; education; women empowerment; rights and welfare of migrant workers; disaster management and humanitarian assistance; environment; and sustainable development.

In 2022, Switzerland has supported cooperation projects and activities with ASEAN in cyber security, mine action, and bio-trade, among many others./.

Members of the Committee of Permanent Representatives to ASEAN and their respective delegations as well as Ambassador-designate of Switzerland to ASEAN, Olivier Zehnder, and the Swiss delegation were also in attendance.

Source: VNA