The 15th consultation between ASEAN economic ministers and their counterparts from China, Japan and the Republic of Korea took place in Siem Reap, Cambodia on August 29, to discuss the economic situation in the world, as well as in each participating countries.

During the meeting, part of the framework of the 44th ASEAN Economic Ministers Meeting (AEM-44), the ministers expressed their delight at the regional economic integration and trade ties between the association and the three partners, which have been significantly developing despite the recent gloomy global economic situation.

Last year, trade between ASEAN and the three partner countries reached 678.2 billion USD, representing a year-on-year increase of 26.2 percent. Exports grew by 34.9 percent while imports were raised by 18 percent. In 2011, trade revenues between ASEAN and the three partners accounted for 28.4 percent of the combined trade revenues of the association’s member countries.

Also, China, Japan and the RoK increased investment to ASEAN from 31.8 billion USD in 2010 to 41.2 billion USD in 2011.

The ministers also focused on the progress of the East Asia Vision Group, which draws the framework for the development of the cooperation between ASEAN and the three partner countries over the next 10 years, in preparation for the ASEAN Summit in November in Cambodia.

On the same day, the 14th ASEAN-Mekong Basin Development Cooperation Ministerial Meeting also took place, as part of the framework of the AEM-44.-VNA