Prof. Yuichi Hosoya from Keio University in Japan speaks at the workshop on "ASEAN and the Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy." (Photo: VNA)

Jakarta (VNA) – A workshop on "ASEAN and the Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy" was held by the Mission of Japan to ASEAN and the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) in Jakarta, Indonesia on April 4 to discuss regional security threats.

The workshop, part of the activities to mark the 45th year of ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation, brought together 200 representatives from the government of Indonesia, embassies and international organisations.

Delegates to the event discussed regional security threats and outlined opportunities for countries in the region to foster economic-trade cooperation, contributing to the upkeep of the regional peace, stability and prosperity.

“The Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy” was first mentioned by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in May 2007 but the concept received little attention at that time, said Prof. Dewi Fortuna Anwar from LIPI at the workshop.

During the APEC Economic Leaders’ Week in Vietnam and the 31st ASEAN Summit in the Philippines last year, it was raised again by US President Donald Trump, who vowed to stand side by side with India, Japan and Australia to actively maintain the regional stability and prosperity, Anwar noted.

ASEAN has played a central role in the regional security architecture with specific actions in place, such as the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) and the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus, Prof. Yuichi Hosoya from Keio University in Japan told the Vietnam News Agency.

ASEAN holds a strategic position in Asia and Japan cannot succeed in this strategy without close partnership with ASEAN member states, he said, stressing Japan will continue supporting ASEAN to take this role, he stressed.

Dr. Dinh Thi Hien Luong from the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam said the workshop is vital as it gathered many leading scholars in the region and Japan, showing the great interest of ASEAN countries in Japan’s new “Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy”.

Discussions at the event allowed the participating nations to understand this new concept and how it will affect the regional security and benefits, she noted.-VNA