East Asian countries push for economic integration hinh anh 1The fourth East Asia Summit (EAS) Economic Ministers’ Meeting (Source: VNA)
Vientiane (VNA) – Economic ministers and deputy ministers from ASEAN and its eight partner countries reiterated the endeavours to accelerate economic integration in East Asia at the fourth East Asia Summit (EAS) Economic Ministers’ Meeting in Vientiane, Laos, on August 5.

The eight partner countries comprise Australia, China, India, Japan, the Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Russia and the US.

The Vietnamese delegation to the event, which took place within the framework of the 48 th ASEAN Economic Ministers’ Meeting (AEM 48) and related meetings, was led by Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Cam Tu.

The partner countries welcomed the formation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) late last year and described this as a breakthrough of regional economic integration.

Comparing notes on regional economic developments, they said the combined GDP of the participating EAS countries hit 41.67 trillion USD in 2015, a slight decrease from 42.02 trillion USD in the previous year.

Total trade between ASEAN and its eight EAS partner countries reached 1.05 trillion USD in the year, as compared with 1.11 trillion USD in 2014.

Trade between the ten-member group and other EAS countries makes up 46.3 percent of the bloc’s accumulated trade. Up to 52.1 billion USD in foreign direct investment (FDI) from EAS countries landed in ASEAN in 2015, accounting for 43.3 percent of the group’s total FDI.

The delegates said risks of a global economic slowdown still exist, adding that the below-expectation recovery of developed economies and tightened financial conditions may pose challenges for regional growth.

They noted the impact of Brexit on the global economy, stressing the role of open trade policies and a safe global trade system in boosting economic growth.

The ministers and deputy ministers also mentioned the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, and progress made in Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) negotiations.

Hailing the outcomes of the tenth WTO Ministerial Conference in Nairobi, Kenya, in December last year as well as the issuance of the Nairobi Ministerial Declaration, they said the Nairobi Package is one of the most important achievements in the field of agriculture gained by WTO members.

The delegates also welcomed the outcomes of the G20 Conference of Trade Ministers in Shanghai last July, saying relevant sides stand ready to enhance cooperation to contribute to the success of the G20 Hangzhou Summit scheduled for September.-VNA