1. POLITICAL AND SECURITY COOPERATION


1.1 Political

1.1.1 Foster closer cooperation and consultation between our delegations on reforming and democratising the United Nations and the institutions under the United Nations System by making them more reflective of the contemporary realities, and especially in the World Trade Organisation and other Bretton Woods institutions, so as to articulate the aspirations of the developing countries for equitable treatment and representation of their views;

1.1.2 Consult and cooperate on regional and international political and security issues of mutual interest and concern;

1.1.3 Promote norms and practices by ensuring the participation and involvement of women in consultations and peaceful settlement of disputes, particularly those reflected under the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia for consultations and peaceful settlement of disputes;

1.1.4 Cooperate closely in opposing the threat of weapons of mass destruction and on disarmament issues with the objective of total elimination of all weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons; and

1.1.5 Strengthen the regional security dialogue and cooperation through the ASEAN Regional Forum for the maintenance of regional peace and stability.

1.2 Terrorism and other Transnational Crimes

1.2.1 Strengthen and expand effective cooperation to combat international terrorism and other transnational crimes including through the existing ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Transnational Crimes (AMMTC);

1.2.2 Build institutional linkages for intelligence and information sharing, exchange of information, and cooperation in legal and enforcement matters;

1.2.3 Develop joint training programmes and use regional organisations for technical assistance to effectively fight terrorism and other transnational crimes such as money laundering, drug trafficking, trafficking in persons, particularly of women and children, arms smuggling, cyber crimes, international economic crime and sea piracy;

1.2.4 Exchange ideas and jointly promote best standards and practices and explore ways to safeguard the sovereign rights of the parties, the common maritime boundaries, and shared maritime environment;

1.2.5 Explore developing anti-terrorism cooperation and assistance packages, covering among others, immigration controls, customs cooperation, land, air and sea safety;

1.2.6 Encourage accession to all relevant international counter-terrorism conventions and protocols and implement relevant UN resolutions on counter-terrorism;

1.2.7 Cooperate closely in opposing the threat of weapons of mass destruction especially in the context of such weapons falling into the hands of terrorists; and

1.2.8 Explore other avenues of cooperation between ASEAN and India taking into consideration the Work Programme to Implement the ASEAN Plan of Action to Combat Transnational Crimes.

2. ECONOMIC COOPERATION


2.1. Trade and Investment

2.1.1 Establish ASEAN-India Regional Trade and Investment Area (RTIA) covering trade in goods, trade in service and investment as outlined under the Framework Agreement for Comprehensive Economic Cooperation;

2.1.2 Encourage participation of trade and industry representatives in the Business Summits and trade fairs held in India and ASEAN countries with special incentives for the participation of Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Viet Nam;

2.1.3 Promote and facilitate cross flows foreign direct investment into ASEAN countries and India through cooperation between investment promotion agencies, dissemination of information on investment policies, rules and procedures, and linkages between investors and local entrepreneurs;

2.1.4 Establish sectoral linkages involving business and industries to promote business interaction in specific sectors of industries;

2.1.5 Maximise the synergies for promoting trade in goods and services, as well as in investment flows between ASEAN and India, and identify barriers to trade in services, with a view to addressing them, in accordance with the level of development of each participating country; and

2.1.6 Work towards establishing bilateral Agreements between Member Countries of ASEAN and India for Investment Promotion and Protection and Double Taxation Avoidance.

2.2. Customs Cooperation

2.2.1 Enhance trade facilitation by streamlining customs procedures, formalities and practices in accordance with international conventions and best practices;

2.2.2 Encourage development of on-line linkages of India and ASEAN countries with regard to Certificate of Origin; and

2.2.3 Provide technical assistance and capacity building to the CLMV Countries to upgrade their customs capacity.

2.3. Standards and Conformance Cooperation

2.3.1 Establish linkages between national standards and conformity assessment bodies and technical regulators for mutual recognition of conformity assessment procedures and results and capacity building;

2.3.2 Facilitate the exchange of information on standards and conformity assessment procedures in relation to the regulatory requirements of Member Countries of ASEAN as well as India for easy access by the regulatory bodies and exporters in the participating countries through identification of contact points;

2.3.3 Set up technical cooperation in capacity building in the area of accreditation and certification bodies and laboratories;

2.3.4 Establish export and import inspection systems in line with internationally accepted good regulatory practices; and

2.3.5 Promote technical assistance in the area of standards and conformance to CLMV Countries.

2.4. Finance

2.4.1 Improve financial stability, among others, through voluntary swap arrangement;

2.4.2 Enhance regional monetary and financial cooperation;

2.4.3 Develop and promote an Asian bond market;

2.4.4 Further develop capital market infrastructure in areas of legal and regulatory and supervisory framework and cross border trading clearance settlement;

2.4.5 Enhance financial sector links between ASEAN and India;

2.4.6 Explore various ways to enhance trade financing in the region; and

2.4.7 Assist ASEAN Countries, particularly CLMV in the development of their capital markets.

2.5. Transport and Infrastructure

2.5.1 Expedite completion of India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway and extension to Laos and Cambodia;

2.5.2 Encourage private sector participation in highway projects and port and coastal shipping projects in India and in the development of roads and railways in the Member Countries of ASEAN;

2.5.3 Strengthen cooperation in the field of shipping through, among others, the formation of ASEAN-India maritime association to provide an institutional basis to coordinate and enhance ASEAN-India cooperation in marine transport; and

2.5.4 Strengthen ASEAN-India air connectivity by working towards progressively greater liberalisation of air services between ASEAN and India.

2.6. Energy

2.6.1 Promote and develop trade and investment interest in gas-related projects;

2.6.2 Promote and develop trade and investment interest in the electricity sector, and pursue an integrated and coordinated development programme to establish compatibility of electricity grids, and work towards liberalisation of power trade among ASEAN Member Countries and India;

2.6.3 Develop and strengthen institutional linkages between ASEAN Centre for Energy (ACE) and India to cooperate on R&D into energy efficiency and renewable energy, and to establish programmes of cooperation; and

2.6.4 Promote sustainable and optimal utilisation of renewable energy, coal and new hydrocarbon projects, and cooperate in energy policy and planning, energy efficiency and conservation, as well as in the establishment of institutional linkages for developing other programmes of cooperation.

2.7. Science and Technology

2.7.1 Information and Communication Technology

2.7.1.1 Bridge the digital divide among and within our countries and use the synergies between our hardware and software capabilities for strengthening the IT industry in the region;

2.7.1.2 Set up Advanced Institutes of Information Technologies in different ASEAN countries, in particular CLMV for facilitating the building up of ICT capabilities;

2.7.1.3 Organise regular meetings of IT Ministers in ASEAN and India including with the IT Ministers of Indian states to facilitate exchange of experiences;

2.7.1.4 Strengthen institutional cooperation in the ICT infrastructure connectivity between ASEAN and India to accelerate the IT trade between ASEAN and India;

2.7.1.5 Promote and facilitate ICT workshops and training in the developments of ICT capacity building;

2.7.1.6 Promote human resource cooperation through various training courses, e-Learning, seminars, workshops as well as exchange of visits among IT experts;

2.7.1.7 Promote the development of an ASEAN-India broadband high speed optical fibre network and promote information flow and the application of new technology in the region; and

2.7.1.8 Exchange programmes among government officials of ASEAN and India in the areas of rural development and poverty eradication that will help provide additional income to rural households and improve the quality of lives. For example:

i. visits and training programmes on good practices in rural development and poverty eradication;

ii. R&D on rural products such as handicrafts, leather-based crafts and beads works.

2.7.2 Research and Development and Technology Management

2.7.2.1 Promote joint R&D and technology development in areas having potentials for commercial applications with the involvement of public and private sector, through, among others, the formation of strategic alliances between ASEAN and Indian enterprises;

2.7.2.2 Cooperate in the field of technology management, on issues, covering IPR management, technology forecasting, technology assessment, technology inter-mediation in areas such as materials science, marine technology, microelectronics design and processing, and multimedia;

2.7.2.3 Establish a Technology Transfer Network, to facilitate the pooling of information on the availability of technologies and experts with the enterprises/R&D organisations in the region; and

2.7.2.4 Support ASEAN’s environmental programme and activities under its Environmentally Sustainable Cities Initiative by organising seminars and workshops to share India’s experiences in lowering urban air pollution and use of alternative fuel.

2.7.3. Space Technology Applications and Biotechnology

2.7.3.1 Develop a medium to long term programme of cooperation in the field of space technology promoting collaboration in its applications for broadcasting and telecommunication, effective management of natural resources and environment, disaster mitigation and weather forecasting;

2.7.3.2 Establish an ASEAN-India Biotechnology Network to encourage cooperation in the field of plant biotechnology for crop improvement; and

2.7.3.3 Develop an inventory of the region’s bio-resources and joint research on issues relating to animal biotechnology, bio-informatics and regulatory issues concerning biotechnology.

2.8. Human Resource Development

2.8.1 Increase the number of fellowships for ASEAN students, especially to those from CLMV countries to pursue higher education in India;

2.8.2 Set up Software Development and Training Centres in the CLMV countries and provide DoE (Design of Experiments) accreditation to these training centres;

2.8.3 Establish facilities for teaching English language in select Member Countries of ASEAN especially in the CLMV countries;

2.8.4 Promote closer collaborations between universities in ASEAN and India through the ASEAN University Network;

2.8.5 Work towards developing a comprehensive ASEAN-India Programme for Capacity Building for better coordination and monitoring; and

2.8.6 Support the CLMV Countries to upgrade their education systems through implementation of curricula for kindergarten, primary, secondary and tertiary education.

2.9. Sharing Experience on Managing Development

2.9.1 Hold regular meetings of the ASEAN-India policy makers and Network of Think Tanks (AINTT) to facilitate exchange of development experiences; and

2.9.2 Institute fellowships for promoting studies on ASEAN-India relations.

2.10. Pharmaceuticals and Health

2.10.1 Share experiences and capability in developing quality generic pharmaceuticals industry, to make medicines more affordable to people;

2.10.2 Cooperate in joint production of diagnostic and therapeutic supplies for HIV/AIDS, vaccines such as, but not limited to, BCG, anti-venin, equine rabies, anti-hepatitis and anti-tetanus, serum vaccines, generic drugs and traditional medicines like Ayurveda and Herbal medicines; and

2.10.3 Address health related issues having bearing on countries in the region, especially in light of emerging diseases such as SARS and avian flu.

2.11. Commodities, Agriculture, Horticulture and Food Processing

2.11.1 Develop closer interaction between the Ministries related to Agriculture, Horticulture and Commodities in the ASEAN Member Countries and India to initiate joint actions on issues of common interest.

2.12. Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)

2.12.1 Develop joint programmes in capacity building aimed at strengthening the capacities of SMEs on both sides;

2.12.2 Share on a regular basis policy and other experiences in the promotion of a dynamic, networked, and competitive SME sector;

2.12.3 Encourage collaboration in the formation and linkages of associations of small-scale industries and other non-government organisations through training of personnel, and information dissemination;

2.12.4 Foster supply and subcontracting linkages and partnerships involving SMEs from ASEAN and India as well as other firms within and outside the region through trade missions, study visits and other network-building activities;

2.12.5 Collaborate in the joint development and compilation of system toolkit packages and other materials for training in enterprise organisation and management skills, including financial reporting and business plan preparations, technology upgrading, quality maintenance and assurance, ISO standard certification;

2.12.6 Promote various associations of small-scale industries and other business organisations in support of ASEAN-India SME development and linkages;

2.12.7 Organise Indian technology exhibitions in new Member Countries of ASEAN with a focus on machinery and equipment for small scale and rural industries; and

2.12.8 Establish SME Service Centres in ASEAN countries, in particular CLMV and virtual SME Service Centres for ASEAN and India SMEs.

3. SOCIAL AND CULTURAL COOPERATION


3.1. Social

3.1.1 Promote cooperation and regional commitment on the poverty alleviation efforts and for achieving Millennium Development Goals, including sustainable development;

3.1.2 Create a Forum for sharing of experiences in labour market liberalisation and addressing issues relating to mobility of skilled labour between ASEAN and India;

3.1.3 Promote dialogue between Government officials and civil societies of ASEAN and India in the field of rural development, poverty alleviation, women empowerment, and issues concerning protection to children against exploitation, gender equality and old age care; and

3.1.4 Encourage home stay facilities.

3.2. Tourism

3.2.1 Promote and facilitate more tourism flow;

3.2.2 Consider establishing a high level cooperation mechanism between relevant tourism authorities;

3.2.3 Consider reciprocal arrangements where possible for relaxing existing visa regulations and extending travel concessions to ASEAN and Indian tourists;

3.2.4 Promote cultural and rural tourism through joint tourism packages, including Eco-Tourism, adventure tourism, sports tourism, religious circuit tourism, by utilising their geographical diversity; and

3.2.5 Promote budget tourism packages by using multi-modal transport, including luxury coaches and ferry services.

3.3. Culture

3.3.1 Promote greater awareness and appreciation of each other’s traditional and contemporary cultures through establishment of an autonomous ASEAN-India Foundation (AIF) to facilitate exchange and linkage programmes in the areas of creative and performing arts, cultural education, conservation and management of cultural and archaeological heritage, cultural enterprises and creative industries;

3.3.2 Institutionalise regular exchange of views of Culture Ministers to promote better understanding of cultural diversity and in formulation of cultural policy in the context of globalisation;

3.3.3 Encourage regular interaction among cultural workers of ASEAN and India aimed at fostering deeper cultural reflection;

3.3.4 The AIF may also provide for ASEAN-India Civil Societies’ Forum to discuss and exchange, experiences on preserving traditional cultural values from the negative impacts of the process of trade liberalisation and globalisation. Among the concerns of the forum will be the ways to increase dissemination of local cultural contents among the youth and other efforts aimed to strengthen healthy national identity among them; and

3.3.5 Work together to prevent the illegal smuggling of cultural heritage so as to make these valuable objects stay within jurisdiction of its rightful owner.

3.4 People-to-People Contacts, Media, Entertainment, and Sports

3.4.1 Facilitate greater interaction between media of ASEAN and India for reducing the information gaps;

3.4.2 Establish ASEAN-India Parliamentarians’ Forum to provide for regular interaction; and

3.4.3 Works towards organising ASEAN-India Games.

4 INSTITUTIONAL AND FUNDING ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PLAN OF ACTION


4.1 Draw up specific work programmes, if necessary, to implement the various actions and measures outlined in this Plan of Action;

4.2 India will provide technical support to the ASEAN Secretariat in implementing the Plan;

4.3 Strengthen existing funding mechanisms for effective coordination and implementation of this Plan;

4.4 Provide requisite resources in accordance with their respective capacities, exploring effective and innovative resource mobilisation to accomplish the various strategies and measures outlined in the Plan;

4.5 Conduct regular review of the Plan through existing mechanisms such as the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of ASEAN and India, the ASEAN-India Senior Officials Meeting, the ASEAN-India Joint Cooperation Committee, the ASEAN-India Working Group to ensure consistency with the priorities of the ASEAN-India dialogue relations and to incorporate new and urgent areas of cooperation given the dynamic regional and global developments; and

4.6 Submit a progress report of the implementation of the Plan of Action to the annual ASEAN-India Summit through the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of ASEAN and India.