Vietnam brings new vitality to ASEAN hinh anh 1Ambassador Kamsiah Kamaruddin, head of the Malaysian permanent mission to ASEAN (Photo: VNA)

Jakarta (VNA) -
Vietnam’s entry into ASEAN on July 28, 1995, brought ‘new dynamism’ to the bloc, Ambassador Kamsiah Kamaruddin, head of the Malaysian permanent mission to ASEAN, said in a recent interview with Vietnam News Agency correspondents in Jakarta.

It is now one of the most dynamic economies in ASEAN, she added, and has made significant contributions to the bloc’s economic growth.

ASEAN has seen a lot of benefits from admitting Vietnam as a member, who was soon followed by Myanmar, Laos, and Cambodia. The admission of the four new members made ASEAN an integrated, unified entity in the region, she said.

Regarding the difficulties and challenges ASEAN is currently facing, the ambassador said members are maintaining efforts to control the COVID-19 pandemic.

Vietnam has done its best in the role of ASEAN Chair 2020, she said, speaking highly of its efforts to promote ASEAN agenda programmes in this difficult time.

It has proven its strong leadership role via promoting cooperation between member states in responding to COVID-19 and ensuring economic recovery, she added.

ASEAN has conducted a number of online discussions, not only within the bloc but also with partners such as Japan, China, the Republic of Korea (RoK), the US, Australia, and Russia on how ASEAN can help the world recover from COVID-19, she said.

Vietnam has demonstrated its leading role in discussions with China, the RoK, and Japan about promising cooperation, including in the search for a vaccine.

As ASEAN Chair 2020, Vietnam is still giving priority to promoting issues relating to women, children, and sustainable development, especially marine environmental sustainability, despite the fact that COVID-19 is raging through the region and the world, the ambassador said.

Vietnam is sparing no effort to promote the ASEAN agenda and connectivity, she added.

Founded in 1967, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) groups together ten member countries: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam./.