1. The 8th ASEAN + Japan Summit was held successfully on 30 November 2004 in Vientiane. The Meeting was chaired by H.E. Mr. Bounnhang Vorachith, Prime Minister of the Lao PDR.
2. We held a fruitful and cordial discussion under the theme of “Strengthening the Dynamic and Enduring ASEAN-Japan Relations”. We reiterated the importance of ASEAN-Japan relations, which had contributed to peace, stability, and prosperity in the region and the world.
3. The ASEAN Leaders reiterated that Japan is one of ASEAN’s oldest and important dialogue partners and highly valued the support and assistance given by Japan to ASEAN over the last three decades. They called on Japan to continue its strong support to ASEAN’s integration, and development.
4. The ASEAN Leaders congratulated Japan on the successful convening of the historic meeting of the ASEAN-Japan Commemorative Summit held in Tokyo last December. We welcomed the signing of the Tokyo Declaration for the Dynamic and Enduring ASEAN-Japan Partnership in the New Millennium and the adoption of the ASEAN-Japan Plan of Action to implement the Tokyo Declaration to strengthen the growing strong and broad-based partnership. In this connection, we noted with satisfaction the Executive Report on the progress of implementation of the Plan of Action and called for closer cooperation at all levels bilaterally, sub-regionally and regionally to further promote the ASEAN-Japan dialogue relations.
5. We exchanged views on a number of regional and international political and economic issues of our mutual concerns. This included the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsular as well as UN reforms, in particular, those of the Security Council through expanding both permanent and non-permanent categories and working methods. In this connection, we noted the importance of the Six-Party Talks and the need to engage in dialogue to promote mutual confidence. We also shared the view that the Six-Party Talks should be reconvened at the earliest possibility to bring about the common goal of denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsular. We welcomed the important role Japan is playing in the Six-Party Talks.
6. ASEAN Leaders welcomed Japan’s accession to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Jakarta in July 2004, which will contribute to the maintenance of peace and stability in the region. We adopted the ASEAN-Japan Joint Declaration for Cooperation on the Fight Against International Terrorism that will further enhance our cooperation in fighting terrorism.
7. We noted the progress on the implementation of the Framework for Comprehensive Economic Partnership (CEP) between ASEAN and Japan signed last year. We acknowledged that the establishment of an economic partnership agreement between Japan and ASEAN Member Countries would help economic growth across ASEAN region. We also agreed that ASEAN-Japan CEP Agreement negotiation should commence in April 2005, and took note of the Economic Ministers’ commitment to endeavour to conclude the negotiation within two years from that day.
8. The ASEAN Leaders expressed their appreciation to Japan for its support for the Vientiane Action Programme (VAP) and its assistance in ASEAN’s integration through various ASEAN initiatives and projects, namely IAI, Mekong Basin Development, BIMP-EAGA and others, aiming at narrowing the development gaps between the old and new members of ASEAN and human resource development. Japan welcomed the CLMV and the CLV Summits and expressed its support to the implementation of the Vientiane Declaration on Enhancing Economic Cooperation and Integration among Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Viet Nam, and the Vientiane Declaration on the Establishment of the Cambodia-Laos-Viet Nam Development Triangle.
9. Taking into account the current high oil price, we supported energy cooperation, in particular, in alternative energy, such as bio-fuels, and hydroelectric power, and stockpiling and energy security. In this regard, ASEAN Leaders encouraged Japan to increase direct investment in Cambodia, Laos, and Myanmar, such as through the construction of hydroelectric power plants and to relocate environmental friendly industries in these three countries in sectors where they enjoyed comparative advantage.
10. We shared the view that there is a need to facilitate the reform of ASEAN-Japan Centre to promote the growing economic partnership between ASEAN and Japan and supported the proposal of Japan for an Eminent Persons Group. We noted the outcome of the ASEAN-Japan Business Dialogue held on 25 November 2004 in Vientiane.
11. The Leader of Japan welcomed the decision reached by ASEAN Leaders to convene the first East Asia Summit (EAS) in Malaysia in 2005. The ASEAN Leaders supported Japan’s proposal to host an ASEAN+3 Foreign Ministers Meeting in Kyoto in May 2005 to discuss the concept and modalities of an EAS.
12. The Leader of Japan supported the accession of Laos and Viet Nam to the WTO.