JAKARTA, 5 June 2020 – ASEAN and Norway agreed to explore and work together in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts at the 5th Meeting of the ASEAN-Norway Joint Sectoral Cooperation Committee held via video conference yesterday.

Officials from ASEAN, represented by the Committee of Permanent Representatives in Jakarta, and the Norway Ministry of Foreign Affairs, led by Deputy Minister Marianne Hagen, deliberated on possible joint activities including support for ASEAN COVID-19 Response Fund and other related activities on health and vaccine resilience, post-pandemic recovery, and protection of vulnerable groups affected by the pandemic.

In addition to exploring work on the pandemic response, officials discussed progress of joint projects under the Priority Plan for ASEAN-Norway Sectoral Dialogue Partnership implemented since 2017. These include projects on peace and human rights, maritime and marine cooperation, energy, trade, and connectivity, among others.

Officials also exchanged views on potential areas for cooperation including the use of digital platforms in education and other issues on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

As the current priority plan will conclude at the end of this year, both sides agreed to develop the successor document, namely ASEAN-Norway Sectoral Dialogue Partnership: Practical Cooperation Areas 2021-2025, aimed at guiding and further enhancing ASEAN-Norway cooperation in next five years.

The Meeting was co-chaired by Deputy Secretary-General of ASEAN for ASEAN Economic Community Department Aladdin D. Rillo and Ambassador of Norway to ASEAN Morten Høglund.