Cha-am Hua Hin, Thailand, 25 October 2009
1. We, the Leaders of Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines had a fruitful 6th BIMP-EAGA Summit in Cha’ Am, Thailand on 25 October 2009. We discussed the favorable developments and the future directions of BIMP-EAGA cooperation. We reiterated our commitment to equitable economic development, and to the reduction of poverty and socio-economic disparities in BIMP-EAGA. We recognized the challenges posed by a sluggish world economy to our collective efforts to stimulate growth and sustain development in the subregion. We, therefore, called on our Ministers and Senior Officials to use this opportunity to work closer together to more effectively address the challenges to BIMP-EAGA’s sustainable economic and social development.
2. We are pleased with the overall progress in the implementation of the BIMP-EAGA initiatives towards realizing BIMP-EAGA’s long term vision as the Food Basket for ASEAN and Asia and as a premier ecotourism destination. Enhancing transport connectivity, energy interconnection, tourism promotion, and trade facilitation are key instruments to realize this vision. We continued to task our Ministers and Officials to examine and resolve bottlenecks in the implementation of the BIMP-EAGA initiatives and ensure that we follow-through with our commitments. We also directed our Ministers and Senior Officials to work towards determining future priorities and enhance approaches to cooperation to sustain the momentum and to build on the gains achieved thus far.
3. We agreed that cooperation must now be further intensified in the agriculture, aquaculture and fisheries sectors. We reiterated our directive for the Agriculture Ministers to take the lead in formulating strategies and exploring innovative ways to enhance the potential of BIMP-EAGA as a regional food basket. We recognized the importance of community-based ecotourism to the economic development of our rural areas and directed our Tourism Ministers to lend their full support to this initiative.
4. We also conveyed our support to the various programs being undertaken to protect, conserve, and sustainably manage BIMP-EAGA’s rich marine and terrestrial resources such as the Heart of Borneo and Coral Triangle Initiatives, and directed the concerned ministries to strengthen collaborative actions in protecting our environment. We therefore welcome Brunei Darussalam’s offer to host a ministerial conference focusing on the Heart of Borneo and Coral Triangle, particularly in supporting global efforts to address climate change. We underscored the need for BIMP-EAGA to come-up with a unified position and work closely together in ensuring a successful and workable outcome of upcoming Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December, 2009. We welcomed and supported Brunei Darussalam’s membership to the Coral Triangle Initiative.
5. We recognized the valuable contribution of the private sector and noted the efforts being taken by the BIMP-EAGA Business Council (BEBC). We agreed to continue our support for BEBC’s role in the overall strategy of increasing private sector engagement in economic policy discussions and noted its valuable feedback on economic policies and how such feedback could help in enhancing the business and investment environment in BIMP-EAGA. We underscored the need for closer coordination and the regular conduct of strategic dialogues with the private sector to identify the policy and regulatory reforms needed to hasten the implementation of priority projects. We commended the Ministers for the conduct of the dialogue with the private sector and urged them to institutionalize this dialogue within the BIMP-EAGA structure.
6. We reaffirmed our commitment to strengthen the institutional capacity of the BIMP-EAGA Facilitation Centre (BIMP-EAGA FC) as the subregion’s central coordinating and monitoring unit and look forward to the conclusion of the agreement to formalize the BIMP-EAGA FC. We urged the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ) and other Strategic Partners to continue to provide technical assistance necessary to strengthen the BIMP-EAGA FC. We reiterated our commitment to improve our respective in-country coordination mechanisms as we continue to strengthen the institutional structures and coordinating mechanisms at the subregional level.
7. We applauded the decision of the Ministers to identify and accelerate the development of critical infrastructure projects to improve connectivity and facilitate trade, investment and tourism within the subregion. In this regard, we endorsed the following:
• A three-year rolling program process for the identification, processing, and review of priority projects.
• Priority infrastructure projects as attached in Annex A, and
• ADB technical assistance project for a sub-regional project development facility for BIMP-EAGA.1
8. We noted with great appreciation the increased technical assistance projects of ADB in support of transport connectivity, energy development, enhancing trade facilitation, the promotion of sustainable management of natural resources, private sector and SME development, and the strengthening of institutions and mechanisms in BIMP-EAGA. We thanked the GTZ for its technical support in promoting sub-regional value chains for priority products and tourism, and in helping create a more conducive framework for intra-EAGA transport operations through the formulation of sub-regional transport MoUs.
9. We commended our Senior Officials for the signing of the Framework of Economic Cooperation with China and look forward to mutually beneficial engagements, particularly between our private sectors. We noted with encouragement and great appreciation the increased involvement of Japan in the subregion’s development. We look forward to the early conclusion of a framework of cooperation with Japan to formalize its status as a development partner of BIMP-EAGA. We also welcomed the support of the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) for the preparation of a coherent master plan to coordinate and expand subregional initiatives in East Asia. We endorsed the decision of our Ministers to elevate our engagement with our Development Partners to Ministerial level.
10. We expressed our sincere appreciation and gratitude to the Government of Malaysia and the Kingdom of Thailand for the successful organization of the Sixth BIMP-EAGA Summit.
BIMP-EAGA Infrastructure Project Pipeline
(as of October 2009)
a) Tarakan – Serudong Road
b) Sarawak-Kalimantan Power Interconnection (Indonesian section)
a) Sarawak-Kalimantan Power Interconnection (Malaysian section)
b) Lahad Datu Palm Oil Industrial Cluster
a) Expansion of Mindanao Ports Program I
b) Palawan Ports Development Program
a) Kuala Lurah Border Crossing Facility
b) Pandaruan Bridge (between Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia)
a) Pontianak-Entikong Transport Link
b) Enhancing the Manado-Bitung Link
a) Expansion of Mindanao Ports Program II
b) Rehabilitation of the Davao-General Santos Road
1 This will involve project preparatory activities for, and assistance in, pursuing the implementation of the projects through public (non-sovereign), private, and public-private schemes.
2 Start year of project preparation.