The ASEAN Plus Three (APT) mechanism has been the indispensable core driving force for enhancing the cooperation of East Asia as well as for effective responses to crises, Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, underlined in his remarks at the 24th virtual APT Summit this afternoon.

In fact, he continued, amidst the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, APT region continues to be an essential growth engine for regional and global socio-economic development.

To expedite socio-economic recovery, Samdech Techo Hun Sen urged Plus Three countries (China, Japan and Korea) to provide more active support for the implementation of regional mechanisms, namely: (1) the ASEAN Centre for Public Health Emergencies and Emerging Diseases (ACPHEED), (2) the ASEAN Regional Reserve of Medical Supplies for Public Health Emergencies (RRMS), (3) the ASEAN Travel Corridor Arrangement Framework (ATCAF), and (4) the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework (ACRF).

The Prime Minister requested APT countries to further promote effective implementation of the ASEAN Plus Three Plan of Action on Mitigating the Economic Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic and the ASEAN Plus Three Economic Cooperation Work Program 2021-2022, and stresses the need for ASEAN Plus Three countries to ratify the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) to ensure the entry into force of the Agreement in early 2022, with the aim of promoting recovery and stimulating regional economic growth.

The Cambodian Premier expressed his appreciation for the progress of implementation of the APT Work Plan 2018-2022. In parallel, Cambodia calls for the Work Plan for 2023-2027 to focus on four priorities, namely: (1) public health security, (2) capacity-building for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and cooperation in digital economy, (3) climate-change resilient agricultural production, and (4) sustainable energy.

According to H.E. Kao Kim Hourn, Minister Attached to the Prime Minister, during the summit, the APT leaders underscored the importance of continuing to work together to strengthen their cooperation, and mentioned about the existing mechanisms related to food security, food reserves and connectivity, particularly the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025 as well as the vision to build not only the ASEAN, but also APT Community.

The APT leaders adopted the “ASEAN Plus Three Leaders’ Statement on Cooperation on Mental Health among the Adolescents and Young Children” and the progress report on implementation of APT Cooperation Work Plan 2018-2022.

Source: Agency Kampuchea Press

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