Ladies and Gentlemen,
After months of active preparations and two days of intense activities in an atmosphere of friendship and mutual trust, the 6th ASEAN Summit has come to a successful conclusion.
Now, we have sufficient grounds to say that the Hanoi Summit is a real bridge joining two centuries, reflecting our determination to strengthen unity and cooperation for the future of peace, stability, and sustainable development, responding to the aspirations of our peoples and the world community.
Fully conscious of ASEAN’s opportunities and challenges on the eve of the 21st century, and reflecting the will of the peoples of Southeast Asia, we have agreed on major orientations of ASEAN’s activities in the time to come.
- We have demonstrated the determination to strengthen unity on the basis of traditional “unity in diversity”, and turn it into a driving force to elevate ASEAN’s cooperation to a higher plane. With this determination, we will build upon our community spirit based on the inherent identity and values of each member and the whole region as well as the basic principles and ways which have helped to develop ASEAN through the years. In the interest of strengthened peace, enhanced cooperation, and the fulfilment of the vision of ASEAN-10, we have a agreed to admit the Kingdom of Cambodia into the Association at an early special ceremony to be held in Hanoi.
- We have agreed to strengthen our political cooperation, make joint efforts to promote our role at the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), maintain the environment of durable stability, and consider them vital elements for the prosperity of each member country and the whole Association.
- We have emphasised, once again, the spirit of national and regional resilience, the efforts to further exploit our region’s diversified potentials, especially the abundant source of industrious and creative labour, make the fullest use of the fundamentals created to overcome the crisis, regain the prosperity.
- Against the background of the economic crisis, we have also stressed the policy to enhance cooperation through the best efforts and most effective measures with a view to restoring macroeconomic stability and sustained growth.
Toward this end, we have unanimously agreed to speed up reforms, especially those of banking and financial institutions, deepen our integration, with a view to creating a dynamic, attractive and competitive ASEAN economic area, fully capable of responding to changes in the global economy. We are committed to implement our collective and individual plans of action and a series of bold measures, taking into account the conditions and adaptability of each economy, with a view to actualising the ASEAN Free Trade Area, the ASEAN Investment Area, and the ASEAN Industrial Cooperation Scheme.
- At the same time, we have reaffirmed the need for cultural development to be in harmony with social development, rural development in harmony with urban development, with greater focus on poverty alleviation, job creation, and comprehensive development of the human factor. We have agreed to carry out transportation and communication projects, creating growth triangles and quadrangles, including the promotion of development programmes for less developed interstate areas along the West-East Corridor of the Mekong Basin (WEC).
- While making the fullest use of our own potentials and those of the region, we send to the international community a strong and clear message that ASEAN will continue its outward-looking policy, and wish to strengthen cooperative relationship with its dialogue partners and other countries, regional organisations, and make worthy contributions to the cause of peace and prosperity of Asia-Pacific and the rest of the world.
Reflecting the above, the Hanoi Declaration, the Hanoi Plan of Action, the Statement on Bold Measures, and the Framework Agreements and Protocol signed on this occasion have created assets for ASEAN to advance into the third millenium, fulfil the objectives of Vision 2020.
On behalf of the Government and people of Vietnam, I would like to express our sincere thanks to Your Majesty, the Sultan Of Brunei Darussalam, Your Excellencies, ASEAN Heads of State/Government for your valuable assistance and effective cooperation, which have greatly contributed to the success of the Summit. I would also like to assure our close brotherly Brunei Darussalam that Vietnam will do her utmost to contribute to the preparations of the next Summit to be held in Bandar Seri Begawan.
Our Summit’s success can also be attributed, in an important way, to the great efforts of the Ministers, distinguished senior officials of member countries, the Secretary-General of ASEAN, and the conference supporting staff, including translators, interpreters, and technicians. Allow me to express, on behalf of Your Majesty, Your Excellencies and all of you present here, our high appreciation for their contributions. Our gratitude also goes to the representatives of regional and international media for their timely and full coverage of this important event, bringing good tidings from Hanoi to the peoples of Southeast Asia and the rest of the world.
With the success of the 6th Summit, we will definitely translate into reality the theme of the Summit “Unity and Cooperation for an ASEAN of Peace, Stability and Equitable Development”.
With this determination, I would like to declare closed the 6th ASEAN Summit and wish to pass on the responsibility of hosting the next ASEAN Summit to His Majesty Haji Hassanal Bolkiah, the Sultan of Brunei Darussalam.