The highlight of the PREP-SEOM was 13 priorities proposed by Vietnam – the ASEAN Chair in 2020. The priorities will be discussed at the 26th AEM Retreat before reaching consensus for key tasks for implementation in this year.

Officials pose for a photo at the meeting in Da Nang city on March 8.

The priorities are based on three main orientations, namely promoting connection and economic connectivity in ASEAN, enhancing partnership for peace and sustainable development and raising adaptation capacity and operational effectiveness of ASEAN.

Earlier on March 7, with the complicated developments of the COVID-19, the Vietnamese delegation proposed that ASEAN should jointly work to maintain the supply chain in the grouping, creating conditions for supporting material supply sources for businesses, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises, in the context that the COVID-19 outbreak has impacted both human health and the economy in the region and the world.

At the PREP-SEOM, participants discussed a series of important issues to report to the 26th AEM Retreat, such as discussing and adopting initiatives and priorities of Vietnam in ASEAN Chairmanship Year 2020; reviewing and reaching consensus on ASEAN’s annual priorities for this year; and seeking measures for existing problems in intra-ASEAN cooperation as well as collaboration between ASEAN and its partners, among others.

Over the past years, Vietnam has participated in building the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in an active, proactive and responsible manner, and promoting the implementation of commitments to form the AEC has been one of Vietnam’s top priorities.

Source: VNA