1. Consultations between the ten ASEAN Economic Ministers (AEM) and the United States Trade Representative (“the Ministers”) were held on 4 August 2016 in Vientiane, Lao PDR. The Consultations were co-chaired by H.E. Mrs Khemmani Pholsena, Minister of Industry and Commerce of Lao PDR and Ms Barbara Weisel, Assistant United States Trade Representative (AUSTR) for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, Office of the United States Trade Representative (representing H.E. Michael Froman, the United States Trade Representative).

2. The United States (U.S.) commended the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015 as a major milestone in regional economic integration. The U.S also welcomed the new AEC Blueprint 2025, which envisages an AEC by 2025 that is highly integrated and cohesive; competitive, innovative and dynamic; with enhanced connectivity and sectoral cooperation; a more resilient, inclusive, and people-oriented, people-centered community; and integrated with the global economy.

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