JAKARTA, 27 May 2021 – The 36th ASEAN-Japan Forum held virtually today reaffirmed the commitments of both sides to further strengthen cooperation and advance partnership.

The meeting took note of the good progress made in ASEAN-Japan cooperation over the last year in all four pillars of partnership, including through following up to the outcomes of the 23rd ASEAN-Japan Summit and the implementation of the Revised Implementation Plan of the 2013 Vision Statement on ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation. Approximately 97% of the action lines set out in the Plan have been addressed.

The meeting also highlighted the close cooperation between ASEAN and Japan in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and appreciated Japan’s support to ASEAN, such as through Japan’s contribution for the establishment of the ASEAN Centre for Public Health Emergencies and Emerging Diseases Centre and to the COVID-19 ASEAN Response Fund.

The Senior Officials agreed to continue strengthen cooperation in various areas, including trade and investment, sustainable development, digital technology, cyber security, MSMEs development, disaster management, smart cities, connectivity, smart city network, sub-regional development and people-to-people exchange.

Both sides underlined the need to enhance cooperation for the regional post-pandemic recovery, including through the implementation of the ASEAN-Japan Economic Resilience Action Plan and the swift ratification of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement. The meeting also encouraged practical cooperation in the areas outlined in the Joint Statement of the 23rd ASEAN-Japan Summit in November 2020 on Cooperation on ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific.

The Senior Officials also exchanged views on regional and international issues of common interest and concern.

The meeting was co-chaired by Nguyen Quoc Dzung, Deputy Foreign Minister, ASEAN SOM Leader of Viet Nam, and Takeo Mori, Senior Deputy Foreign Minister, SOM Leader of Japan, and attended by Senior Officials or their representatives of ASEAN Member States, as well as the Deputy Secretary-General for ASEAN Political-Security Community.