In his speech at the session, PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc proposed a number of directions to promote cooperation for connectivity between the RoK and ASEAN, including connecting and developing infrastructure at seaport along the strategic shipping route from the Indian Ocean to the Pacific linking Southeast Asia with Northeast Asia.

He asked the RoK to accelerate the disbursement of capital from the Global Infrastructure Fund to support ASEAN’s infrastructure projects.


The first session of the ASEAN-RoK Commemorative Summit (Source: VNA)

The Vietnamese PM said with its technological strength, especially digital technology, the RoK is in a good position to assist ASEAN businesses, especially micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in adapting to the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the digital economy.

Phuc suggested ASEAN and the RoK strongly invest in connecting people, facilitating travel, tourism, and promoting the flow of skilled labourers between the two sides.

ASEAN leaders emphasised that connectivity is ASEAN's high priority in its effort to promote regional connectivity and build the ASEAN Community.

They expressed thanks to the RoK’s effective support for the grouping in implementing master plans on ASEAN connectivity in the periods of 2010-2015 and 2015-2025 and the Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI) to narrow the development gap;  developing human resources, vocational training, smart cities, roads, railways and sea routes to connect areas in ASEAN.

ASEAN member nations want to expand comprehensive cooperation with the RoK in the fields of infrastructure development, digital connectivity, and people-to-people exchange, they said.

For his part, Moon affirmed that his country will actively cooperate with ASEAN to foster the regional connectivity.

Regarding infrastructure development, the RoK will contribute to increasing cohesion between island and continental areas in East Asia, and encourage Korean businesses to invest in 19 key infrastructure projects in the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025, he said.

In terms of digital connectivity, the RoK will accelerate connection of smart urban infrastructure, through choosing Busan and Sejong to pilot linkages with the ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN); and enhancing the sharing of satellite data with ASEAN on monitoring climate change and environmental impact in Asia.

The RoK will also improve its visa system to facilitate ASEAN citizens’ travel to the RoK; and encourage cooperation in maritime and aviation transport between the two sides, he said.

Moon also announced the RoK’s initiative to provide vocational training for 100 teachers and 400 workers from ASEAN in the next three years, adding that the country will also support ASEAN member nations in improving technological capacity and solutions, and double the number of scholarships for ASEAN citizens by 2022.

During the working lunch on promoting peace in the Korean Peninsula on the same day, ASEAN and RoK leaders applauded historic positive progress in dialogues for peace and denuclearization in the Peninsula, including the inter-Korean and US-Democratic People’s Republic of Korea summits.

ASEAN leaders highly appreciated efforts made by the RoK government and President Moon in promoting the peace process in the Korean Peninsula, affirming ASEAN's willingness to support and contribute to joint efforts towards sustainable peace and denuclearization in the Peninsula, including creating conditions for parties to intensify dialogue within ASEAN-led forums.

President Moon acknowledged and appreciated positive and constructive stance and goodwill of ASEAN countries to contribute to dialogues and cooperation for peace and denuclearization in the Peninsula.

Talking about the issue, PM Phuc affirmed that along with other ASEAN countries, Vietnam supports dialogue to reduce tension, while calling on parties concerned to strictly implement  Resolutions of the UN Security Council on denuclearization, towards building a peaceful and prosperous Korean Peninsula./.

CPV/VNA