The ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) closed the 32nd General Assembly (AIPA 32) in Phnom Penh on Sept. 23 with a series of resolutions calling on the region to boost cooperation for peace, stability, harmony, economic growth and poverty reduction.

The AIPA 32 also adopted a joint communique stressing the need to enhance the strength of the ASEAN security-political community by promoting regional integration and cooperation.

It said AIPA members encourage their governments to support ASEAN by boosting relations for mutual benefits among ASEAN members and their partners and friends.

AIPA committed to support ASEAN members’ further efforts to expand and deepen cooperation in security and politics, including in national defence, maritime security, fighting transnational crime in ASEAN, as well as between ASEAN and its partners, in order to effectively deal with regional security problems.

The organisation called on parties to solve disputes by conciliation and in a peaceful manner.

In economic terms, AIPA called for stronger growth and sustainable development along the direction of narrowing the development gap among new and old ASEAN members. Six early members were to give technical assistance and help build capacity for the four newcomers – Laos , Cambodia , Myanmar and Vietnam – to help those countries meet future development requirements.

AIPA affirmed that climate change is a big challenge for economic development, so ASEAN members need to ensure food security in the region through bilateral and multilateral mechanisms.

In term of society, AIPA urged countries to strengthen enforcement of laws to prevent human and drug trafficking and called for a harmonious combination of laws with ASEAN mechanisms to protect the rights of migrant workers.

For issues on women, the General Assembly passed a resolution calling on member parliaments and governments to boost cooperation in mobilising resources and building policies to ensure that by 2015, all member countries reach the target of protection of health for mothers, the fifth goal among eight Millennium Development Goals of the UN.

AIPA also passed a resolution on creating opportunities for women to participate in business, especially for women in rural areas, with the aim of poverty reduction.

The General Assembly decided to hold its next meeting in Lombok , Indonesia from Sept. 16 – 22, 2012.

Also on Sept. 23, Cambodian National Assembly President and President of AIPA 32 Heng Samrin handed over the gavel, the symbol of AIPA presidency, to Indonesian House Speaker Marzuki Alie, who takes over the AIPA Presidency for AIPA 33.

AIPA 32 was held from Sept. 18 to 23 in Cambodia, with the participation of the heads of all parliaments of ASEAN and observers from Australia, Canada, China, the European Parliament, Japan, the Republic of Korea, India, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Russia and the United States./.