Joint Communique of the 37th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting Jakarta, 29-30 June 2004
01:01 05/10/2022

Joint Communique of the 37th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting Jakarta, 29-30 June 2004



1. We, the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), met in Jakarta on 29-30 June 2004, the first time since the ASEAN Leaders decided to establish an ASEAN Community. The meeting was chaired by H.E. Dr. N. Hassan Wirajuda, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia.

2. We met under the theme "Striving For Full Integration of ASEAN: A Prosperous, Caring and Peaceful Community," during which we reaffirmed our countries' commitment to establish an ASEAN Community by 2020, comprising the ASEAN Security Community, the ASEAN Economic Community and the ASEAN Socio-cultural Community. In this regard, our meeting was essential in discharging our responsibility to assist our Leaders chart the course towards that end. We recommended to the 10th ASEAN Summit in Vientiane the endorsement of the Plans of Action for the ASEAN Security Community and the ASEAN Socio-cultural Community and the successor plan of the Hanoi Plan of Action.

3. We were encouraged by the important progress in the development of the ASEAN Security Community, which we believed would lead to an ASEAN that is at peace with one another and with the world at large. We agreed that the ASEAN Security Community would strengthen our capacity to deal with security challenges, both traditional and non-traditional security issues. The ASEAN Security Community would strengthen ASEAN relations with Dialogue Partners and its other friends and would enhance ASEAN's role as the ARF's primary driving force.

4. We welcomed the significant progress in realizing the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community, a community that would be a single market and production base with a free flow of goods, services, investment, and skilled labor and freer flow of capital. We were confident that the deepening and broadening economic integration would lead to a stable, prosperous, and highly competitive ASEAN region.

5. We further noted with satisfaction our cooperation in social development. We commended the important work directed towards the formulation of a Plan of Action on the ASEAN Socio-cultural Community to complete the three pillars of the ASEAN Community. We agreed that the ASEAN Socio-cultural Community is a community of caring societies, diverse in culture yet with a distinctive regional identity.

6. We agreed to work towards development of an ASEAN Charter which would, inter alia, reaffirm ASEAN's goals and principles in inter-state relations, in particular the collective responsibilities of all ASEAN Member Countries in ensuring non-aggression and respect for each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity; the promotion and protection of human rights; the maintenance of political stability, regional peace and economic progress; and the establishment of effective and efficient institutional framework for ASEAN.


7. Present for the Opening Session was the Special Envoy of the Government of Papua New Guinea, a special observer in ASEAN. His Excellency Mr. José Ramos-Horta, Senior Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, was present as guest of the Chairman of the 37th ASEAN Standing Committee.

8. Her Excellency Megawati Soekarnoputri, President of the Republic of Indonesia, graced our meeting with a keynote address, which we deeply appreciated. In her address, President Megawati Soekarnoputri, inter alia, expressed the view that:

a. In spite of ASEAN's success in the past as a force for peace and stability and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region, it must endeavor to address today's and tomorrow's formidable array of global and regional challenges. These challenges include surging unilateralism and new or continuing conflicts; precarious regional and international economic situation; new and continuing epidemics; and transnational crimes, including terrorism;

b. as past measures are becoming inadequate, ASEAN could not resort to business as usual, but must respond with intelligence and creativity and with all the strength it could muster;

c. the Declaration of ASEAN Concord II and its envisaged ASEAN Community comprising three pillars of ASEAN Security Community, ASEAN Economic Community, and ASEAN Socio-cultural Community serves as the framework on which ASEAN can find and marshal its strength;

d. by putting its house in order and by increasing its cohesiveness and solidarity, ASEAN could thus deal more effectively with the dynamics of its regional and international environment, including in the ASEAN+3 processes; and

e. as democracy is taking place all over the world, Asia is fortunate because democracy is neither being imposed nor just a mindless imitation of western systems. This trend is evident in the free, honest and democratic elections successfully held this year in the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, the Philippines and Indonesia.


9. We had taken steps to implement our Leaders' decision to establish an ASEAN Community comprising three pillars, namely political and security cooperation, economic cooperation, and socio-cultural cooperation that were closely intertwined and mutually reinforcing for the purpose of ensuring durable peace, stability and shared prosperity. We have made quite substantial progress in the past nine months since the adoption of the Bali Concord II in the formulation and finalization of plans of actions of those three pillars as the basis in our strive towards full integration.

Vientiane Action Programme

10. We noted with satisfaction of the Assessment Report on the Implementation of the Hanoi Plan of Action (HPA) and agreed that the successful implementation of the HPA significantly contributed to the realization of ASEAN goals set by ASEAN Vision 2020 and the Bali Concord II.

11. We discussed the draft of the Vientiane Action Programme (VAP) and agreed that it should be consistent with the goals and objectives of the ASEAN Vision 2020 and the Declaration of ASEAN Concord II. As a successor to the HPA, the VAP is a six-year plan to realize the medium-term goals of the ASEAN Community, while focusing, inter alia, on deepening regional integration and narrowing the development gap between and among Member Countries, particularly the least developed Member Countries.


ASEAN Security Community Plan of Action

12. We commended Indonesia for developing and elaborating the ASEAN Security Community (ASC) Plan of Action. We appreciated the substantive work that had been undertaken by our Senior Officials in developing the ASC Plan of Action, and agreed on the text they had prepared. We further agreed to recommend the text for adoption by the Leaders at the 10th ASEAN Summit in Vientiane, to be annexed to the Bali Concord II. We looked forward to the report by the Indonesian Foreign Minister to the Leaders at that Summit.

Political Cooperation

13. We discussed a wide range of issues of ASEAN political cooperation with due regard to the cardinal principle of non-interference within the spirit of an ASEAN family.

14. We congratulated Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines for their success in holding free and peaceful elections. We believed that these elections have contributed to the attainment of a just, democratic and harmonious Southeast Asia as called for in the Declaration of ASEAN Concord II. We looked forward to a similarly successful round of Indonesia's coming first direct presidential elections.

15. We noted the briefing given by Myanmar on the reconvening of its National Convention and the development thereon. We acknowledged the potential of the Convention in paving the way for new constitution and the holding of elections in keeping with it. We recalled and emphasized the continued relevance of the Joint Communique of the 36th AMM and the Chairman's Press Statement of the 9th ASEAN Summit. In this regard, we underlined the need for the involvement of all strata of Myanmar society in the on-going National Convention. We encouraged all concerned parties in Myanmar to continue their efforts to effect a smooth transition to democracy. We recognized the role of the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General in assisting Myanmar to achieve this goal.

Treaty of Amity and Cooperation

16. We reaffirmed the importance of the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC) as the key code of conduct governing relations between States and a diplomatic instrument for the promotion of peace and stability in the region. We also reiterated our commitment to enhance cooperation with States outside Southeast Asia in the strengthening of international peace, security and stability. Within this context, we warmly welcomed the accession of China and the Republic of India to the TAC at the ASEAN+China and ASEAN-India Summits in Bali, October 2003, and looked forward to the accession to the TAC by Japan and Pakistan on 2 July 2004. We encouraged other non-Southeast Asian countries to accede to the Treaty.

Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone Treaty

17. We reaffirmed the importance of vigorous efforts to further strengthen cooperation in supporting the implementation of the Treaty on Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone, with a view to promoting the purposes and objectives of the Treaty, particularly ensuring early accession of the Nuclear Weapon States. We agreed to work together in a spirit of amity and cooperation to resolve the outstanding issues and called on the Nuclear Weapon States to show maximum flexibility and work together with ASEAN on this matter. We welcomed China's readiness to sign the Protocol.

ASEAN Regional Forum

18. We welcomed our Leaders' reaffirmation, made at the 9th ASEAN Summit, of the role of the ARF as the primary forum in enhancing political and security cooperation in the Asia Pacific region, as well as the pivot in building peace and stability in the region. We resolved to ensure that ASEAN shall continue to enhance its leading role to further the momentum of cooperation in further advancing the ARF process, as its contribution to the maintenance of peace, security and stability in the Asia Pacific region.

19. We expressed appreciation to the ARF Chair for carrying out initiatives of the enhanced role of the Chair and regarded these as important contributions in further strengthening the ARF.

20. We endorsed the establishment of the ARF Unit within the ASEAN Secretariat, which we believed could serve to advance the ARF process, particularly ASEAN's leading role in the ARF and the enhanced role of the ARF Chair.

21. We recalled our agreement to lift the moratorium and to consider the application of new participants of the ARF on a case-by-case basis. In this regard, we welcomed the concurrent views of all ARF participants to admit Pakistan into the ARF. We looked forward to Pakistan's participation in the ARF and to its contribution to peace and security in the Asia Pacific region.

South China Sea

22. We reaffirmed the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties (DOC) in the South China Sea, which we signed with China in Phnom Penh on 4 November 2002, as an important step towards the adoption of the Code of Conduct in South China Sea that is crucial for promoting peace, security and stability in the region. We welcomed the stock-taking in the implementation of all provisions of the DOC and to undertake confidence-building and cooperative measures that could contribute to the sustainability of peace and stability in the region. We reiterated our call for all parties concerned to seek to deal with the disputes in the South China Sea by peaceful means in accordance with international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. We welcomed the recommendation of the ASEAN Senior Officials for follow-up action, including the establishment of an ASEAN-China Working Group and a review mechanism, in order to incrementally implement the DOC.

23. We appreciated the efforts of the Indonesian Government in holding the informal workshop on Managing Potential Conflict in South China Sea since 1990 that has contributed to the comfort level of the ongoing process.

24. We noted with appreciation the initiative of the Philippines Government in carrying out Exercise Luzon Sea Phase 1 - Palawan Expedition as a practical application of Part IX of the 1982 Law of the Sea Convention on the cooperation of states in enclosed and semi enclosed seas which is encouraged under Paragraph 6 of the DOC.

Transnational Crimes

25. We welcomed the Joint Communiqué of the 4th ASEAN Ministers Meeting on Transnational Crime (AMMTC) and the Joint Communiqué of the 1st AMMTC+3 on 8 January 2004 and 10 January 2004, respectively, in Bangkok. In this regard, we stressed the central role of the AMMTC in the region-wide initiatives and cooperation in fighting transnational crime. Furthermore, we commended the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between ASEAN and China on Cooperation in the Field of Non-Traditional Security Issues, in Bangkok on 10 January 2004, which provides concrete and operational measures on cooperation in the field of non-traditional security issues, including counter-terrorism, between ASEAN and China. We were encouraged by the progress made under the Regional Ministerial Conference on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crimes (Bali Process) which helped enhance the regional and national capacity to combat people smuggling and trafficking in persons, particularly in the areas of public awareness raising, legislative development and law enforcement.


26. We reiterated our strongest condemnation of terrorism in all its form and manifestation. We emphasized the need to address the root causes of terrorism and rejected any attempt to associate terrorism with any religion, race, nationality or ethnic group. We reviewed the intensified cooperation among ASEAN Member Countries in the fight against terrorism, which had made possible the arrest of persons engaged in terrorist activities and helped prevent the occurrence of terrorist acts. We called for greater concerted and coordinated efforts and concrete initiatives at all levels in combating terrorism.

27. We renewed our determination to enhance coordination and cooperation with the international community in combating international terrorism. We appreciated the implementation of the ASEAN-US Counterterrorism Work Plan to carry out the ASEAN-US Joint Declaration for Cooperation to Combat International Terrorism. We welcomed, and looked forward to the implementation of, the ASEAN-India Joint Declaration on Cooperation to Combat International Terrorism and current priority of ARF cooperation in fighting international terrorism and transnational crimes, especially ARF Inter-sessional Meetings on Counter-Terrorism/Transnational Crime (ISM on CT/TC). We looked forward to the signing of ASEAN-Australia Joint Declaration for Cooperation to Combat International Terrorism and the ASEAN-Russian Federation Joint Declaration for Cooperation to Combat International Terrorism. We also looked forward to the concrete implementation of the Joint Declaration on Cooperation to Combat Terrorism, adopted at the 14th ASEAN-EU Ministerial Meeting (AEMM) in Brussels in January 2003.

28. We commended the holding and welcomed the practical outcomes of the Bali Regional Ministerial Meeting on Counter-Terrorism, held in Bali on 4-5 February 2004, as an important contribution to the efforts at national, regional and international levels to combat terrorism. We welcomed the establishment of the Jakarta Center for Law Enforcement Cooperation (JCLEC) and noted its mandate to network with other regional centers, such as the International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA) in Bangkok and the Southeast Asia Regional Center for Counter Terrorism (SEARCCT) in Kuala Lumpur on the basis of complementarity and non-duplication of their activities. We looked forward to continuing our cooperation in the training of officials involved in counterterrorism through SEARCCT, JCLEC and ILEA.

ASEAN Maritime Cooperation

29. Reaffirming that maritime cooperation is vital to the evolution of the ASEAN Security Community, we agreed to foster maritime cooperation between and among ASEAN countries in a holistic, integrated and comprehensive manner, and explore the possibility of establishing a maritime forum.

Other Area of Cooperation

30. We reaffirmed our commitment to the protection and promotion of human rights. In this regard, we noted the ongoing ASEAN efforts and dialogues with the non-governmental Working Group for an ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism, as well efforts to enhance the exchange of views among different sectors in ASEAN towards the realization of an ASEAN human rights mechanism. We took note of the meeting between the ASEAN Senior Officials and the Working Group for an ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism in Jakarta on 28 June 2004. We noted the establishment of national human rights mechanism in some member countries. We also noted the conclusions and recommendations of the Fourth Workshop on ASEAN Regional Mechanism on Human Rights held in Jakarta on 17-18 June 2004.


31. We commended the work on the realization of the ASEAN Economic Community to follow up the decisions of the 9th ASEAN Summit, particularly on the progress achieved in the implementation of various measures for the 11 sectors identified for priority integration. We lauded the decision taken by the ASEAN Economic Ministers (AEM) to develop individual sectoral integration roadmaps of the 11 priority sectors and to submit all finalized roadmaps and a general Framework Agreement to guide the implementation of the roadmaps for signing by the Leaders at the 10th ASEAN Summit in Vientiane.

32. We welcomed the ongoing negotiations in regional FTAs such as the ASEAN-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership and the ASEAN-China and ASEAN-India FTAs as important steps towards our goal of greater regional economic integration.

33. We welcomed the enhancement of economic relations between ASEAN and its Dialogue Partners, both at the regional and bilateral levels. We commended the efforts of all parties concerned in promoting closer economic linkages with ASEAN, including through the ASEAN-China Framework Agreement on Comprehensive Economic Cooperation, ASEAN-Japan Framework for Comprehensive Economic Partnership (CEP), ASEAN-India Framework Agreement on Comprehensive Economic Cooperation and Trans-Regional EU-ASEAN Trade Initiative (TREATI). We also welcomed the proposal of the ASEAN Economic Ministers to launch ASEAN-CER FTA negotiations this year. We called for the early conclusion of the ASEAN-United States Trade and Investment Framework Agreement. We welcomed the ongoing Joint Study on Comprehensive Economic Cooperation between ASEAN and the Republic of Korea, which would serve as the basis for an ASEAN-Republic of Korea FTA. We followed with interest the ongoing bilateral FTA negotiations between ASEAN Member Countries and Dialogue Partners.

Initiative for ASEAN Integration

34. We expressed our satisfaction at the overall progress in the implementation of the IAI Work Plan projects and stressed the need to secure funding support for carrying out a number of remaining projects. We urged new approaches and strategies to be developed to get more funding support from within ASEAN, ASEAN's Dialogue Partners and other interested parties. In this regard, we welcomed the initiative to set up the co-shepherd mechanism between ASEAN-6 and Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, and Viet Nam in order to jointly take charge of moving forward the implementation of the IAI projects. We also urged China, Japan, the Republic of Korea and India to jointly implement the IAI projects with ASEAN.

Sub-regional Growth Areas

35. We reaffirmed the contribution of the sub-regional growth areas in bridging the development gaps in ASEAN and welcomed the support of the ASEAN Dialogue Partners, the private sector and the Asian Development Bank in these areas.

36. We appreciated the recent mission conducted by China, and welcomed the commitment by Japan and the Republic of Korea to contribute in developing Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-the Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA). We took note of the interest of the Northern Territory of Australia to establish close linkages and partnership with the BIMP-EAGA region.

37. We reviewed the development of the ASEAN-Mekong Basin Development Cooperation (AMBDC) and noted that our Dialogue Partners have agreed to provide technical assistance to the Singapore-Kunming Rail Link Project (SKRL), a flagship project of AMBDC. We welcomed the support of the Republic of Korea for the Feasibility Study for the Missing Links and Spur Lines of the SKRL in CLMV Countries. We also appreciated China's contribution to the preparation work of the Cambodia section of the SKRL and also Malaysia's commitment in assisting Cambodia to complete the 48km missing link from Poipet to Sisophon. The Meeting noted that this would be the first hard infrastructure assistance from a member of ASEAN-6 to the IAI. This development is an important step forward for the implementation of the SKRL. We also welcomed the assistance of Japan for Mekong Sub-region development.

The Role of Private Sector

38. Recognizing the importance of business sectors' participation on regional economic integration, we welcomed the decision of the ASEAN Business Advisory Council to develop an Action Plan for the Business Sector and to jointly organize the Second ASEAN Business and Investment Summit with the Lao National Chambers of Commerce and Industry preceding the 10th ASEAN Summit in Vientiane.


ASEAN Socio-cultural Community Plan of Action

39. We commended the Philippines for developing and elaborating the ASEAN Socio-cultural Community (AScC) Plan of Action and endorsed the basic principles embodied in the Plan of Action. The Plan of Action contains the four elements of ASEAN Socio-cultural Community which include building a community of caring societies, managing the social impact of economic integration, promoting environmental sustainability and strengthening regional identity. We looked forward to finalizing the Plan of Action at our informal meeting in New York on 28 September 2004 for the ASEAN Leaders to adopt during the 10th ASEAN Summit in November 2004 to be annexed to the Bali Concord II.


40. We welcomed the signing of the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women in the ASEAN Region. We believed that the Declaration would further strengthen regional cooperation, collaboration and coordination for the purpose of eliminating violence against women in the region, either individually or collectively.

Communicable Diseases

41. We appreciated the decisions made at the Ministerial Meeting on Current Poultry Disease Situation on 28 January 2004 in Bangkok, which reflected our serious and collective endeavors to combat Avian Influenza in the region. In this regard, we agreed to maintain close coordination and further strengthen our cooperation to prevent the spread of other communicable diseases by exchanging information and best practices through the ASEAN Disease Surveillance Network and deepening cooperation with the WHO.

42. We attached great importance to addressing the problem of HIV/AIDS and committed ourselves to strengthening international cooperation both at the regional and global levels to fight against this deadly disease. In this regard, we expressed strong support to Thailand in hosting the upcoming XV International AIDS Conference and the 2nd Asia-Pacific Ministerial Meeting on HIV/AIDS in Bangkok in July 2004.


43. We noted ASEAN's endeavour to conclude by 2004 an ASEAN framework agreement on access to, and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from, the utilization of biological and genetic resources.

44. In order to achieve the objectives of Johannesburg Plan of Implementation, we called for cooperation with other sub-regions, namely through various partnership schemes with our Dialogue Partners, other countries as well as relevant regional and international organizations, particularly in the 10 priority areas of cooperation. In this regard, we also called on the developed countries to fulfill their commitments, particularly in providing financial resources, enhancing capacity building, and promoting technology transfer to developing countries.

45. We commended the ASEAN Environment Ministers and welcomed the entry into force the ASEAN Agreement on Transboundary Haze Pollution on 25 November 2003 and resolved to further enhance cooperation within the framework of the Agreement.

46. We underscored the importance of further cooperation in the field of water, sanitation, energy, health, agriculture and bio-diversity through partnership among ASEAN Member Countries as well as between ASEAN and other sub-regional organizations.


47. We noted the developments and progress made in the cooperation with our Dialogue Partners in various areas and welcomed the measures taken by both sides to revitalize the dialogue partnerships. In the context of development cooperation, we reiterated the importance of upholding the principle of non-discrimination and to implement activities that involve ASEAN as one regional entity. We strongly believed that strengthened cooperation and closer partnerships between ASEAN and its Dialogue Partners would significantly contribute to maintaining peace and stability and accelerate economic developments in their respective regions and in the world.

48. We noted with satisfaction the overall progress of the ASEAN+3 cooperation. We reaffirmed our determination to continue to drive the ASEAN+3 cooperation and to work with China, Japan and the Republic of Korea in promoting East Asia cooperation through that process. We emphasized that an East Asian community is a long-term objective for East Asia cooperation to be developed through the existing ASEAN+3 mechanism and supported the idea of convening the East Asia Summit at an appropriate time.

49. We welcomed the establishment of the ASEAN+3 Unit within the ASEAN Secretariat, which will assist the ASEAN Chair in coordinating ASEAN+3 cooperation. We were encouraged by the progress made in the implementation of the 17 short-measures recommended by the East Asia Study Group (EASG) and called for the start to implement the remaining measures. We took note of other initiatives designed to further strengthen ASEAN+3 cooperation, including the East Asia Congress (EAC) held in Kuala Lumpur. We welcomed the convening of the 2nd Meeting of the Network of East Asia Think-tanks (NEAT) in Thailand on 16-17 August 2004 and the 2nd East Asia Forum (EAF) in Malaysia on 6-7 December 2004.

50. We noted that under the new format of the Post Ministerial Conferences, ASEAN would hold six sessions of ASEAN PMC+1 with Australia, Canada, the EU, New Zealand, Russia, the United States in Jakarta, 1 July 2004, and meet our counterparts from China, India, Japan and the Republic of Korea in four separate sessions prior to the annual ASEAN Summit in Vientiane in November.

51. We endorsed the recommendation of the ASEAN Economic Ministers to the ASEAN Leaders to convene a summit with Australia and New Zealand, that should be designated as ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Commemorative Summit. This commemorative summit is a one-off event, covering all issues of common concern, and to be convened in the afternoon following the 10th ASEAN Summit and other related summits next November in Vientiane.

52. We expressed strong support for the on-going UN reform efforts aimed at improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the UN system, and looked forward to our meeting in New York this September with the Chairman of the High Level Panel of Threats, Challenges and Change established by the UN Secretary General. We welcomed the initiative to strengthen ASEAN-UN cooperation. We also welcomed the new practice of holding our dialogue with the UN Secretary-General during the UN General Assembly session. In this regard, we are actively considering requesting for an observer status in the United Nations General Assembly. We believed that an institutional relationship with the United Nations would support the realization of ASEAN Community, as well as efforts to strengthen cooperation between ASEAN and the UN as stipulated in United Nations General Assembly Resolution 57/35 of 21 November 2002 on "Cooperation between the United Nations and the Association of South-East Asian Nations". To strengthen ASEAN's role in the UN, we reaffirmed that the Permanent Representatives of ASEAN Member Countries and the Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations could have regular consultations. We also expressed our strong support for action made by the Asian Group in New York to emphasize that it was Asia's turn as the next UN Secretary General.



53. We welcomed the full reassertion of the sovereignty of Iraq on 28 June 2004. We emphasized the need to ensure substantive materialization of this sovereign status. We stressed the need for the full implementation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1546 (2004) on Iraq. We further emphasized the central role of the United Nations in the process of political transition from the sovereign interim government to a democratic government; reconstruction; and development of the country. We are concerned by the deteriorating security situation in the country, and it is our hope that a durable solution could be attained in order to achieve peace, security, stability, and national reconciliation for the well-being of the Iraqi people.

Middle East

54. We expressed our grave concern over the deterioration of the situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem. We condemned all acts of violence. We firmly believed that such acts on violence, if left unchecked, would destroy the peace efforts in the Middle East as well as prolong the humanitarian tragedy in Palestine. We reiterated our deep regret that the Road Map has yet to be implemented, and expressed hope that the international community and the Quartet will undertake the necessary measures to salvage to Road Map and implement its provisions towards its stated aims and goals. In this connection, we underlined the need for all efforts to be made to resume the process for a permanent settlement of the conflict based on United Nations Security Council Resolutions 242, 338, 1397, and 1515. We look forward to the realization of the vision of two states; Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace within secured and recognized borders. We also reaffirmed the important role of the Security Council with regard to the situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and peaceful settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Korean Peninsula

55. We recognized the impact of the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula on peace, stability and security of the wider Asia Pacific region. We emphasized the need for the parties concerned to find peaceful solution through dialogue in the spirit of equality and mutual respect. In this regard, we welcomed the convening of the series of Six Party Talks involving China, DPRK, Japan, Republic of Korea, Russia, and the United States. We welcomed and noted the outcomes of these talks, including the most recent round held in Beijing on 23-25 June 2004. We urged all parties concerned to continue their efforts in order to seek a lasting solution to achieve peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula. On its part, ASEAN stands ready to assist the parties concerned to achieve these objectives.

Asian-African Summit 2005 and the Commemoration of the Golden Jubilee of the Asian-African Conference 1955

56. We recalled our commitment at the 8th ASEAN Summit in Phnom Penh in November 2002 to revitalize Asia-Africa cooperation, including promoting closer ties between ASEAN and NEPAD. In this regard, we welcomed the decision of the Government of the Republic of Indonesia to host the Asian-African Summit on 21-23 April 2005 in conjunction with the Commemoration of the Golden Jubilee of the Asian-African Conference of 1955. This Summit will revitalize the Bandung spirit of Asian-African Conference of 1955 through the establishment of a New Strategic Partnership to promote peace, prosperity and progress in the two continents. It would also reinforce the efforts of ASEAN Member Countries to forge closer economic partnership with Africa under the NEPAD.

Asia Cooperation Dialogue

57. We noted the rapid progress of Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) initiated by Thailand as a forum for all Asian countries to combine their strengths in order to create synergy for the enhancement of mutual peace and prosperity in the region. We were further encouraged by the results of the Third ACD Foreign Ministers' Meeting held on 21-22 June 2004 in Qingdao, China, which deepened existing collaborative projects among ACD member countries and expanded cooperation into other areas of mutual interest and benefit.

58. We also noted with satisfaction significant progress on regional bond market development, and in this regard we would seek to implement the Chiang Mai Declaration on Asian Bond Market Development adopted by the 2nd ACD Ministers Meeting in June 2003, including the future establishment of the Asian bond fund which would invest in local currency denominated bonds, strengthen financial market information sharing, develop capital markets and support efforts to facilitate regional investments.


59. We welcomed the inaugural Ayeyawady-Chao Phraya-Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy (ACMECS) Summit Meeting in Bagan, Myanmar, in November 2003, which launched a new sub-regional framework of cooperation to support the Mekong Sub-region development and further reinforcing the process of regional integration and narrowing the development gap within the region.


60. Recognizing the importance of fostering cooperation between Asia and Latin America, we welcomed the Philippines' successful hosting of the FEALAC. We reaffirmed our support for the Manila Plan of Action, which addressed economic, political, and security issues of mutual concern to East Asia and Latin America, as well as strengthened administrative arrangements to make FEALAC more efficient.


61. We expressed ASEAN's full support for Viet Nam to successfully hold the Fifth Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Summit on 8-9 October 2004 thus contributing to further revitalizing and substantiating the Asia-Europe partnership. We were of the view that substantive progress in Asia-Europe cooperation should not be made contingent upon the question of membership enlargement. In the meantime, we recalled the commitment of the ASEAN Leaders at the Fourth Informal ASEAN Summit in Singapore in 2000 for all ten ASEAN countries to participate together in the ASEM. In this regard, we reaffirmed our continued support for the remaining ASEAN Member Countries, namely Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar, to join concurrently the ASEM.


62. We commended the efforts exerted by APEC to pursue free trade and investment by 2010 and 2020. Accordingly, we supported APEC's contribution to the WTO negotiation process and urged that this endeavor be continued. We encouraged APEC to carry on its efforts in ensuring trade security and promoting economic cooperation to reduce the gap among economies in the region.

WTO Issues

63. We welcomed the recent initiatives by Members of the WTO to revitalize the negotiation in Doha Round. We reiterated our readiness to work constructively with all WTO members to achieve an outcome consistent with the goals contained in the Doha Declaration. In this regard, we reiterated that development related issues should continue to remain the center of multilateral trade negotiations. We encouraged our major trading partners particularly from the developed world, to show flexibility and to take into account the development needs and interests of developing Members of the WTO. We affirmed our continued support for the early accession of Laos and Viet Nam into the WTO.

UN Millennium Development Goals

64. We reiterated that the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) had clearly set specific targets for countries to fulfill in close cooperation with the international community. In this regard, we reaffirmed our commitment to enhance our cooperation to achieve the objectives of MDGs. We emphasized our commitment to translate commitments into actions, including through the creation of a genuine global and regional partnership among governments, international organizations and all relevant stakeholders.

65. We agreed that the attainment of the MDGs required a comprehensive approach, which included, among others, the fulfillment of the commitments adopted by the major international conferences held in the recent years, namely the Monterrey Consensus of March 2002, the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation of September 2002, the Doha Development Agenda of November 2001, and the Declaration of Principles and Plan of Action of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) of December 2003.


66. We noted the importance of reviving the Joint Ministerial Meeting (JMM) in conformity with the decision of the 9th ASEAN Summit, to revitalize the bottom-up mechanism of the ASEAN decision-making process. The JMM would consist of the AMM, the AEM, the AFMM and the Secretary-General of ASEAN.

67. We directed the ASEAN Secretary-General and Directors General to complete their study on ASEAN's institutional framework to determine how the ASEAN structure could be further strengthened to facilitate the realization of an ASEAN Community. We expressed appreciation to Malaysia for its paper on "Review of ASEAN Institutional Framework: A Proposals for Change."

68. We elected the Lao People's Democratic Republic as the Chair of the 38th ASEAN Standing Committee and Malaysia as the Vice-Chair. We looked forward to the Joint Ministerial Meeting, the 10th ASEAN Summit and its related meetings in Vientiane on 29-30 November 2004 in Laos, as well as the 38th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting, the ASEAN+3 Foreign Ministers' Meeting, the Post-Ministerial Conferences and the 12th ASEAN Regional Forum to be held on 26-29 July 2005 in Laos.

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