1. The Fourteenth Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers on Agriculture and Forestry was heldon 8-10 October l992 in Bandung, lndonesia.The Meeting was preceded by a Senior Officials Meeting (SOM) held on 5-7 October 1992.
2. The Meeting was attended by H.E. Dato Paduka Yahya bin Haji Harris, the Ambassador of Brunei Darussalam, on behalf of the Minister of Industry and Primary Resources of Brunei Darussalam; H.E. Mr. Wardoyo, Minister of Agriculture of Indonesia, and H.E. Mr. Hasjrul Harahap, Minister of Forestry of Indonesia; H.E. Datuk Seri Sanusi binjunid, Minister of Agriculture of Malaysia; H.E. Mr. Roberto S. Sebastian, Secretary of Agriculture of the Philippines; H.E. Mr. Lim Hng Kiang, Minister of State for National Development of Singapore; H.E. Dr. Suchati Chutasmit, the Ambassador of Thailand, on behalf of the Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives of Thailand, and their respective delegations. The representatives of the Secretary – General of the ASEAN Secretariat were also in attendance.
3. The Ministers expressed sincere thanks and appreciation to H.E. President Soeharto of the Republic of Indonesia, for his kind hospitality in receiving the Ministers at the Palace, in Jakarta on 8 October 1992. The Ministers concurred with the President’s remarks that ASEAN should not only continue to strengthen intra-ASEAN cooperation in the fields of food, agriculture and forestry but should also be ready to assist other developing countries, particularly those in Africa which are still struggling in their efforts to improve food security measures, within the framework of South-South cooperation, through apprenticeships scheme within the TCDC programme.
4. H.E. Mr. Wardoyo, Minister of Agriculture of Indonesia and H.E. Dato Paduka Haji Yahya bin Haji Harris, the Ambassador of Brunei Darussalam, were unanimously elected as Chairman and Vice-Chairman for the Meeting, respectively.
5. In his Welcoming Address, Minister Wardoyo noted that the 1 4th Meeting of AMAF was indeed a momentous occasion as this Meeting marked the initial step toward a new ASEAN structure as a result of the Fourth ASEAN Summit’s decision. The concrete steps and measures adopted at the Fourth ASEAN Summit should make ASEAN more efficient and competitive, more open to trade and interactions, and better equipped to deal with the outside world.The Ministers recalled the decision of the Fourth ASEAN Summit for enhancing ASEAN cooperation particularly in the field of food, agriculture and forestry. The ASEAN Heads of State agreed that such cooperation should be pursued to strengthen regional cooperation in the areas of agriculture products for ensuring food security, and upgrading information exchanges in ASEAN, as well as to enhance technical joint cooperation to better manage, conserve, develop and market forest resources.
6. The Ministers reviewed the progress of regional activities in various fields of cooperation, namely, food handling, forestry, livestock, food crops, fisheries, agriculture training and extension, joint promotion of ASEAN agricultural products, as well as cooperation in food security. The Ministers also directed the Senior Officials to further encourage private sector participation in these ASEAN activities.
7. Pursuant to the decision of the Fourth ASEAN Summit, the Ministers deliberated on areas of future ASEAN cooperation in food, agriculture and forestry. The Ministers agreed to focus future cooperation on the following areas:
- Increasing agricultural production to meet domestic and regional/international demand for food, agricultural and forestry products;
- Raising the income of the rural population engaged in agriculture, forestry and related activities;
- Promoting intra and extra ASEAN trade of agricultural and forest products;
- Accelerating agribusiness and agri-industries development;
- Strengthening human resources in agricultural production, agricultural and forestry development policy analysis and planning, agricultural resources and enterprises management and other technical fields;
- Conserving natural resources and improving agricultural and forestry sustainability;
- Hastening the development and transfer of improved agricultural and forestry technology;
- Encouraging private sector involvement and participation in agricultural and forestry development, with emphasis on promoting private sector investment in agriculture and forestry.
8. To be able to implement and coordinate the future areas of cooperation, the Ministers also agreed to the frame work of future cooperation as follows:
- In recognizing the important task of reformulating new policy guidelines for ASEAN cooperation in food, agriculture and forestry within the broader framework of ASEAN cooperation as embodied in the 1992 Singapore Declaration, the Ministers agreed that SOM of AMAF would have to play an important role to enable it to respond quickly to policy and other related issues affecting ASEAN agriculture and forestry to effectively formulate strategies, and to perform other special assignments from AMAF. In view of the dissolution of ASEAN-COFAF and its interim technical secretariat (ITS), the SOM should be administratively supported by the ASEAN Secretariat. The Meeting further agreed that the SOM could be technically supported by the various Expert Groups and Subsidiary Bodies including the ASEAN-ADPC, for policy formulation matters as and when the need arises.
- The Meeting also agreed that the various Expert Groups and Subsidiary Bodies which would have the specific time-frame, could likewise expand their areas of concern to cover not only the technical aspects of their cooperation programmes and activities but also matters relating to agricultural policy and strategies review and formulation in their respective sectors.
- With regard to the establishment of the consultative mechanism for formulating collective and common policy issues, the Meeting concurred with SOM’s recommendation to subsume the Special Task Force’s mandate to SOM. In this regard, the Meeting further requested SOM, chaired on a rotating basis, starting with Indonesia, to implement framework of future cooperation in food, agriculture and forestry.
9. With regard to ASEAN Stand on International Matters, the Ministers discussed, among others the following:
- Non-Legally Binding Authoritative Statement of Principles for a Global Consensus on the Management, Conservation and Sustainable Development of All Types of Forests, Convention on Biological Diversity and Agenda 21;
- The efforts to counter the Anti-Tropical Timber Campaign;
- The site of the Centre for International Forest Research (CIFOR);
- Airline Embargo on Transportation of Live Birds; and
- Oil Spillage from “Nagasaki Spirit”.
10. The Meeting expressed deep concern over the unilateral action by Austria, to impose the mandatory labelling recruitment on all tropical timber products imported into Austria. The Meeting regretted that the Austrian Government had undertaken such a unilateral action without prior consultation with producing countries. It viewed the Austrian action as going against the spirit and content of the Non-Legally Binding Authoritative Statement of Principles for a Global Consensus on the Management, Conservation and Sustainable Development of all Types of Forests adopted at the recent Rio United Nations Conference on Environment and Development.
11. The Ministers also noted that the following international conferences would be organized:
- The First ASIA Regional Meeting of Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species of Flora and Fauna (CITES) in Chiang Mai, Thailand, on 30 October-1 November 1992;
- Global Forest Conference to be held in Bandung in 1993;
- Conference of Ministers on Food and Agriculture of the Non-Aligned Movement countries in 1 993 in Jakarta.
12. In promoting the exchange of views and experiences among ASEAN farmers, the Ministers noted that Malaysia had successfully conducted the Third ASEAN Farmers’ Week on 3-1 1 August 1992, in conjunction with the country’s National Farmers’ Livestock Rearers and Fishermen’s Day Celebration. The first and second ASEAN Farmers’ Week had also been successfully conducted in the Philippines and Thailand, respectively. With regard to the fourth and fifth ASEAN Farmers’ Week, the Ministers agreed that Brunei Darussalam and Indonesia would be given the honour to the host the celebrations in 1993 and 1994, respectively.
13. The delegations from Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand expressed their sincere appreciation and thanks to the Government and people of Indonesia for the warm hospitality accorded them and for the excellent arrangements made for the Meeting. The Meeting also expressed appreciation to the ASEAN Secretariat for its valuable assistance throughout the Meeting.
14. With regard to the date and venue of the next Meeting, it was noted that on the basis of rotation, Brunei Darusslam would be the host of the Fifteenth Meeting of AMAF. However, should Brunei Darussalam be unable to host it, Malaysia had offered to host the meeting in 1993.
15. The Meeting was held in the traditional spirit of ASEAN solidarity and cordiality.