Vietnam has vowed to actively attend regional cooperation activities to make the rights of people with disabilities real and enhance their integration into domestic and regional communities.

The pledge was made during the 2nd conference of the ASEAN Project which was jointly held by the Asia-Pacific Development Centre on Disability (APCD) and the Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund in Hanoi on August 27.

Addressing the meeting, Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Pham Thi Hai Chuyen said Vietnam has worked out a wide-range of positive activities at national and regional levels to attract disabled people’s involvement and carried out the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for them.

However, with around 6.7 million people with disabilities, equivalent to 7.8 percent of the national population in 2011, the country still confronts various difficulties and challenges to strengthen their participation in social integration activities and the offering of social welfare to them.

The ASEAN Project aims to improve the living standards and happiness of people with disabilities in the region and increase their capacity, especially the ability of vulnerable groups in community-based activities for integration development.

It is a vital activity for ASEAN to make its high-ranking leaders’ pledges real in the Bali Declaration on the enhancement of the role and participation of persons with disabilities in the ASEAN community and respond to the ASEAN Decade of Persons with Disability 2011-2020, the Asia-Pacific Decade of Persons with Disabilities 2013-2022 and the Incheon Strategy to “Make the Right Real” for Persons with Disabilities in the Asia-Pacific region.

At the conference, Vietnam also pledged to spare no efforts to ratify the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as soon as possible.-VNA