1. The Thirteenth ASEAN Transport Ministers (ATM) Meeting was held on 1 November 2007 in Singapore. H.E. Mr. Raymond Lim, Minister for Transport and Second Minister for Foreign Affairs of Singapore chaired the Meeting. H.E. Gen. Leandro R. Mendoza (Ret.), Secretary of Transportation and Communications of the Philippines served the Meeting as Vice-Chairperson.
2. The Ministers expressed appreciation to Thailand for its chairpersonship of ATM in the past year, which had further strengthened intra-ASEAN transport cooperation as well as with the dialogue partners. The Ministers were pleased with the concrete and collaborative achievements in ASEAN transport cooperation to reinforce the region’s sustained economic growth and competitiveness.
3. H.E. Mr. Lee Hsien Loong, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, officially opened the 13th ATM. In his Keynote Speech, the Prime Minister stated that ASEAN is presently developing a Charter to streamline on ASEAN’s decision-making processes, strengthen its institutions and establishing mechanisms to monitor compliance and settle disputes. He added that ASEAN is undertaking concrete steps to realise the vision of the ASEAN Community by 2015. He highlighted that the 13th ASEAN Summit will be signing the blueprint to establish the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), to set out specific goals and targets to transform ASEAN into a single market with free movement of goods, services, investment and talent.
4. The Prime Minister highlighted the ASEAN transportation sector as both a critical enabler and a key beneficiary of the AEC initiative. He reiterated that an efficient and well-integrated transport system will accelerate ASEAN’s economic development. He also underscored the need for ASEAN to maintain flexible implementation to speed up the integration process. He assessed that the flexible approach should be applied to the ASEAN Air Transport Sector, a high-profile sector closely watched as a key indicator of ASEAN’s resolve to pursue closer economic integration. He urged the ASEAN Transport Ministers to step up discussions to achieve an ASEAN Single Aviation Market by 2015, as envisioned in the AEC Blueprint.
5. He reiterated that ASEAN plays an important role in the efforts to build an East Asian community, and transport will be a key driver in this process. The Prime Minister encouraged the ASEAN Transport Ministers to enhance transport links between ASEAN with the rest of East Asia, such as working out possible Open Skies Arrangements with China and India.
Transport – Critical Enabler to achieve ASEAN Economic Community (AEC)
6. The Ministers exchanged views within the context of an increasing regional dynamism that transport and infrastructure is fundamentally linked to ASEAN’s political, economic, social and environmental well-being. The Ministers underscored that the continued expansion of transport and logistics infrastructure and services is essential in accelerating the establishment of the AEC by 2015. In this regard, the Ministers discussed various measures to intensify greater transport cooperation and integration as a critical enabler to achieving the AEC.
7. The Ministers advocated that a closely integrated and coordinated regional transport system will be an effective vehicle in stimulating trade, tourism and investment flows in the region and in narrowing development gaps.
8. The Ministers agreed to work in fortifying the transport-related measures in the Roadmap for Integration of Logistics Services concluded in the 39th ASEAN Economic Ministers (AEM) Meeting in Manila, the Philippines in August 2007. In particular, the Ministers affirmed to intensify the ASEAN transport facilitation programmes; to accelerate the liberalisation and allow more competition in transport and logistics services; build up key multimodal trade transport infrastructures and assist in uplifting human competencies of ASEAN logistics services providers.
Charting an Open, Integrated and Seamless ASEAN Transport Sector
9. The Ministers affirmed their commitment towards the timely implementation of liberalisation of air services in ASEAN, in line with the Roadmap for Integration of Air Travel Sector (RIATS). In this regard, the Ministers agreed to the signing of the ASEAN Multilateral Agreement on the Full Liberalisation of Air Freight Services and the ASEAN Multilateral Agreement on Air Services at the earliest possible opportunity, in time for implementation by December 2008.
10. The Ministers agreed to expand the RIATS to implement the ASEAN open skies policy by 2015 as part of the ASEAN Single Aviation Market. In this regard, the Ministers also looked forward to the implementation plans at the next ATM in 2008.
11. The Ministers adopted the “Roadmap towards an Integrated and Competitive Maritime Transport in ASEAN”, to promote and strengthen intra-ASEAN maritime transport services and further boost ASEAN transport integration agenda. The Roadmap sets out the framework for the progressive development of a globally competitive and integrated ASEAN ports and shipping sector by developing infrastructure, promoting a liberalised regulatory environment, harmonising standards and building human resource and institutional capacities.
12. The Ministers welcomed the collaborative arrangement on regional cooperation on aircraft accident and incident investigation, aimed to strengthen and implement a regional framework on aviation safety and in particular in aircraft accident and incident investigation, investigation training and sharing of information and expertise.
13. The Ministers expressed satisfaction with the ongoing efforts towards the early conclusion of the ASEAN Framework Agreement on the Facilitation of Inter-State Transport, which will greatly facilitate and improve regional cargo transportation. The Ministers looked forward to signing the Framework Agreement at the 14th ATM in 2008.
ASEAN External Transport Partnerships
14. The Ministers expressed satisfaction with the notable achievements in ASEAN transport partnerships with China and Japan. With China, the Ministers will conclude the ASEAN-China Maritime Transport Agreement and will discuss the ASEAN-China Aviation Cooperation Framework. With Japan, the Ministers will endorse the ASEAN-Japan Regional Road Map for Aviation Security (RRMAS) and the Guidelines for ASEAN-Japan Transport Logistics Capacity Building.
ASEAN’s 40th Anniversary – ASEAN Journeys
15. The Ministers were pleased with the documentary, ASEAN Journeys, featuring the key achievements in ASEAN transport cooperation in the building of a strong and cohesive ASEAN Community for the past 11 years. The 40-minute video documented interviews with the ASEAN Transport Ministers and the Secretary-General of ASEAN. This documentary is ATM’s contribution in commemorating the 40th anniversary of ASEAN.
16. The Ministers expressed appreciation to Singapore for producing the above video documentary.
17. The Ministers expressed their appreciation to the Government of the Republic of Singapore for the warm hospitality and excellent arrangements made and agreed to hold the 14th ASEAN Transport Ministers Meeting and the associated meetings in Manila, Philippines, in November 2008.
LIST OF MINISTERS
H.E. Pehin Dato Abu Bakar Apong, Minister of Communications for Brunei Darussalam;
H.E. Mr. Sun Chanthol, Minister of Public Works and Transport for Cambodia;
H.E. Mr. Jusman Syafii Djamal, Minister of Transportation for Indonesia;
H.E. Mr. Sommad Pholsena, Minister of Communication, Transport, Post and Construction for Lao PDR;
H.E. Dato’ Sri Chan Kong Choy, Minister of Transport for Malaysia;
H.E. Maj. Gen. Thein Swe, Minister of Transport for Myanmar;
H.E. General Leandro R. Mendoza (Ret.), Secretary of Transportation and Communications for the Philippines;
H.E. Mr. Raymond Lim, Minister for Transport for Singapore;
H.E. Admiral Thira Hao-Charoen, Minister of Transport of Thailand;
H.E. Dr. Tran Doan Tho, Vice Minister of Transport for Viet Nam; and
H.E. Mr. Ong Keng Yong, Secretary-General of ASEAN.