Deputy Prime Minister Vu Van Ninh discussed major trends - including the roles of the ASEAN Community and Vietnam - which are deeply impacting the development of Asia in a speech at the 21 st International Conference on The Future of Asia in Tokyo on May 21.

In his keynote speech to the event, which is themed “Asia Beyond 2015: The Quest for Lasting Peace and Prosperity”, Ninh described Japan as an economic power that is crucial to Asia-Pacific development and the building of the ASEAN Community.

He hailed Japan for tightening cooperation with Southeast Asian countries through the ASEAN-Japan, ASEAN+3 and Mekong – Japan mechanisms as well as the East Asia Summit, the ASEAN Defence Ministerial Meeting (ADMM), the ADMM Plus and the ASEAN Regional Forum. He said these all contribute to building trust, expanding comprehensive development cooperation, and effectively coping with traditional and non-traditional security challenges.

Japan is of special significance to Vietnam as the top investor and trade partner, the Deputy PM said, adding that this bilateral strategic partnership is a manifestation of the deep trust that binds the two economies together in the name of peace, cooperation and common development in the region and beyond.

During the conference, Singaporean Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong said that Asia is currently under the spotlight of the global economy and that the 21 st century belongs to Asia.

He also discussed regional conflicts, including territorial sovereignty disputes, and said that the countries concerned should deal with these in line with international law, finding common values for peace, stability and prosperity.

The conference, co-hosted by the news group Nikkei and the Japan Centre for Economic Research, was also attended by ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh and leaders from regional countries.-VNA