The 9th ASEM Summit (ASEM 9) concluded in Vientiane , Laos, on November 6.

The summit adopted two important documents, the “Vientiane Declaration on Strengthening Partnership for Peace and Development” and the “Chair’s Statement”.

The Vientiane Declaration stresses ASEM leaders’ determination to enhance the partnership for peace, stability, development and prosperity between the two continents and the world over and to support the members to fulfill the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015.

The summit highly valued the coordination in coping with non-traditional security challenges, especially the impact of climate change, natural disasters, food security, energy security, nuclear safety, piracy, the protection and sustainable use of water resources, particularly the cross-border ones, and adopted initiatives to further strengthen ASEM cooperation in these key sectors.

Delegates spoke highly of the achievements in the forming of the ASEAN Community in 2015, and affirmed ASEAN’s role in maintaining peace, security and stability in the region.

They also welcomed the EU’s recent participation in the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia.

The meeting confirmed that now more than ever, recovering the economy, security and stability is a common aspiration and interest of all the countries.

Some ASEM members went on to say the settlement of disputes through peaceful measures in accordance with the UN Charter and international law is a principle.

Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung proposed to reform the approach and the way to deal with global issues based on a long-term multi-sector vision, in combination with the implementation of the UN MDGs, ensuring environmental protection, hunger alleviation and gender equality.

He also tabled measures to speed up the implementation of initiatives to deal with current global challenges in a timely and effective manner.

ASEM should increase its contribution to the walking out of global schemes, making them effective in solving the arising issues as well as improving international financial institutions and the effectiveness of the regional and inter-regional cooperation mechanisms, he continued.

The meeting adopted Vietnam ’s initiatives on the organisation of an ASEM summit on natural disaster prevention and relief in coping with climate change and an ASEM conference on the management of water and river basins.

The PM stressed that it is essential to create regional structures suitable to the changes and the diversity of the development levels and political and social systems to push up the positive trends.

Countries should also share the common goal of peace, stability and development, he said, adding that the structures should be constructive, transparent and effective in coping with the rapid development in the world and traditional and non-traditional challenges, as well as ensure the legitimate interests of developing countries.

Dung affirmed that ASEAN’s central role and its enormous efforts are of primary importance in ensuring peace, security, cooperation and accelerating development in South East Asia .

Disputes must be settled through peaceful negotiations and on the basis of the international law, including the ASEAN Six-point Principle on the East Sea , he added.

On regional issues, Prime Minister Dung said that the regional structure taking shape in Southeast Asia, ASEAN’s central role is further consolidated and confirmed as the factor of primary importance in ensuring an environment of peace, security, cooperation and development in the region.

ASEAN ties with its partners are deepening through ASEAN Plus 1, ASEAN Plus 3, the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), the East Asia Summit (EAS) and the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus, he added.

He spoke highly of initiatives and constructive contributions of ASEM members in strengthening cooperation, trade and investment ties with ASEAN and with its individual members.

Vietnam always attaches importance to promoting and deepening the multifaceted cooperation with ASEM members. All Vietnam’s leading strategic partners and most of its top FTA partners are ASEM members, Dung continued.

Those partnerships and connectivity as well as efforts to contribute to the ASEM cooperation is of key significance to the new strategic period of Vietnam, he added.-VNA