JAKARTA, 20 August 2015 – ASEAN and Australian reaffirmed their commitment to further strengthen ASEAN – Australia ties for mutual benefit at the 5th ASEAN-Australia Joint Cooperation Committee (AAJCC) Meeting in Jakarta yesterday. Australia was given Strategic Partner status in 2014 at the ASEAN-Australia Leaders’ Summit to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of ASEAN-Australia Dialogue Relations.

The AAJCC noted the commitment of the Leaders to enhance the partnership as reflected in the decision to convene biennial ASEAN-Australia Leaders’ Summit starting from 2016. The Meeting also reviewed the progress of the Plan of Action (POA) which was adopted in 2014 to realise the objectives and plans identified in the Joint Declaration on ASEAN-Australia Strategic Partnership for 2015-2019. This POA covers a range of ASEAN-Australia cooperative endeavors in political and security, economic, trade and investment, socio-cultural, people-to-people exchanges, tourism, development and education.

Both sides also exchanged views on the future direction of ASEAN-Australia Dialogue Relations which includes strengthening cooperation in areas such as security, education, people-to-people contacts and business linkages. Australia reaffirmed its commitment to support ASEAN integration strategies through the ASEAN-Australia Development Cooperation Programme Phase II (AADCP II). The tenure of the AADCP II was recently extended to 2019 to ensure continuity of its assistance packages. Both sides were pleased with the status of implementation of the various cooperation projects and agreed that ASEAN – Australia ties were progressing well.

The meeting was co-chaired by H.E. Min Lwin, Permanent Representative of Myanmar to ASEAN and H.E. Simon Merrifield, Ambassador of Australia to ASEAN. Representatives from all ASEAN Member States, Australia and the ASEAN Secretariat attended.