Transport ministers of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), China and Japan have adopted several measures to strengthen the cooperation in the field between the 10-member bloc and the two East Asian economic powers.

The 12 th ASEAN- China Transport Ministers’ Meeting that took place in Pakse in the southern Lao province of Champasak on December 19 issued a joint statement pledging to push forward their strategic partnership, including ties in transport. The statement welcomed an initiative on a network of port cities of both sides to serve international trade, cultural exchange and tourism.

ASEAN and China also reiterated their intent to hold a special conference on transport connectivity to contribute to the ASEAN-China free trade area.

The 11 th ASEAN-Japan Transport Ministers’ Meeting held the same day in Pakse adopted the Pakse Plan of Action, which contains 23 joint activities and projects between the two sides in the next decade.

The meeting also acknowledged Japan’s support for ASEAN transport connectivity as well as its initiatives including the new ASEAN-Japan aviation security project and the promotion of road technology transfer between the two sides.

The next ASEAN- China Transport Ministers’ Meeting and ASEAN-Japan Transport Ministers’ Meeting are scheduled to take place in Myanmar next year.-VNA