Foreign Minister attends ASEAN-Canada Post Ministerial Conference hinh anh 1Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son at the event (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA)Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son attended the ASEAN-Canada Post Ministerial Conference via a videoconference on August 5, as part of the 54th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting.

Son hailed Canada’s wish to further deepen ties with ASEAN, making active contributions to the bloc’s common efforts to maintain peace, stability and development in the region.

He suggested Canada assist ASEAN in timely and full access to COVID-19 vaccines, promote specific measures to help regional countries deal with impacts caused by the pandemic and step up recovery and development efforts.

Vietnam supports the launch of negotiations on building the ASEAN-Canada free trade area to facilitate trade and investment, he said. He also proposed accelerating joint work regarding women, peace and security.

The minister stressed that maintaining peace, security, navigation nd aviation freedom in the East Sea is benefit and responsibility of countries, including ASEAN and Canada.

Affirming ASEAN’s consistent principled stance on the East Sea, he highlighted the importance of building trust, self-restraint, non-militarisation, peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

He said ASEAN is actively working with China to build an effective and efficient Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC) in line with international law and the 1982 UNCLOS. He suggested Canada continue supporting ASEAN’s efforts in the issue.

Canadian Foreign Minister Marc Garneau expressed his wish to upgrade ties with ASEAN, join ASEAN-led cooperation mechanisms more deeply and soon launch talks on a free trade agreement between ASEAN and Canada.

ASEAN member states lauded Canada’s donation of 3.5 million CAD (2.8 million USD) to the ASEAN COVID-19 response fund in the next five years and a medical supplies package worth 4.5 million CAD to the grouping.

Both sides agreed to prioritise giving mutual support to cope with the pandemic, mitigate impacts caused by it and promote comprehensive and sustainable recovery.

They pledged to accelerate economic, trade and investment collaboration and stably maintain supply chain linkage. This year, they will launch talks on the free trade area and carry out the action plan for the 2021-2025 period.

Canada vowed to continue with programmes on education-training, high-quality human resource development, support for businesses, disaster management, application of innovation technology, cyber security, digital economic and sustainable development, and climate change response.

The two sides consented to hold celebrations for the 45th anniversary of ASEAN-Canada partnership next year.

Foreign Minister attends ASEAN-Canada Post Ministerial Conference hinh anh 2At ASEAN-Canada Ministerial Meeting (Photo: VNA)

On regional and global issues of shared concern, ASEAN and Canada spotlighted the importance of maintaining peace, security and stability in the region, especially in the East Sea in the current context.

Canada supported ASEAN in promoting cooperation, dialogues, building regional trust, upholding international law, building rules-based regional order, and addressing disputes by peaceful means in line with international law, including the 1982 UNCLOS and completing a COC.

Canada welcomed ASEAN for actively promoting reconciliation and dialogue, assisting Myanmar in seeking measures to stabilise the situation, while emphasising its support for ASEAN to successfully implement Five-Point Consensus reached by ASEAN leaders./.

VNA