ASEAN cooperation in COVID-19 fight reviewed hinh anh 1Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister and head of SOM ASEAN-Vietnam Nguyen Quoc Dung (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) –
The ASEAN Coordinating Council Working Group on Public Health Emergencies (ACCWG-PHE) reviewed cooperation within ASEAN in the fight against COVID-19 during its third meeting, held in the form of video conferencing, on September 1.

The delegates also focused on preparations for the 27th meeting of the ASEAN Coordinating Council to be held this month.

They highlighted the establishment of the COVID-19 ASEAN response fund, and progress in the establishment of the regional warehouses of medical supplies, and the building of standard operating procedures in public health emergencies.

Expressing their concern over the complexity of the new waves of the pandemic in the region and the world, the delegates shared the view that the fight largely depends on vaccine and drug research.

They agreed to adjust regulations of the COVID-19 respond fund to make it easier for countries to contribute to the fund, and enhance cooperation with East Asia Summit (EAS) partner countries at the official and expert levels in the pandemic combat.

Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister and head of SOM ASEAN-Vietnam Nguyen Quoc Dung called on ASEAN countries and the ASEAN Secretariat to continue with their coordination to promote initiatives on COVID-19 response.

He urged completing procedures soon so as to announce the establishment of the medical warehouses at the 27th meeting of the ASEAN Coordinating Council, and complete standard operating procedures in public health agencies to be submitted to the 37th ASEAN Summit.

Regarding the ASEAN framework recovery framework, Dung proposed the ASEAN Secretariat swiftly complete documents and focus on addressing the impacts of the pandemic, helping businesses and people resume their normal activities, and promoting comprehensive, sustainable recovery.

Also on September 1, Deputy Minister Dung attended the 12th Coordinating Conference for ASEAN Political-Security Community (ASCCO-12) which was held in the form of teleconferencing.

The meeting looked into the draft mid-term review report for the ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC) Blueprint 2025.

In his remarks, Dung highlighted achievements in the implementation of the blueprint over the past five years, with 96 percent of the 290 action plans materialised.   

He, however, pointed to challenges such as how to ensure the quality and efficiency of the implementation, difficulties in coordination between ministries and agencies, and shortcoming in the communication work.

The official suggested the meeting identify priorities and include them in the blueprint, thus ensuring political-security cooperation within ASEAN effectively adapt to emerging challenges.

Vietnam, as ASEAN Chair, will coordinate with the ASEAN Secretariat to perfect the mid-term review report on the APSC Blueprint 2025 to submit it to the APSC Council for approval before it is sent to the 37th ASEAN Summit in November./.