BANGKOK – The 35th ASEAN Summit has successfully concluded on Nov 4, with the ASEAN member states and their dialogue partners agreeing to enhance cooperation in different areas. During the Handover Ceremony of the ASEAN Chairmanship, the Prime Minister and Defense Minister, Gen. Prayut Chan-o-cha, passed the ceremonial gavel to his Vietnamese counterpart, Nguyen Xuan Phuc.
As the ASEAN Chairmanship this year, Gen. Prayut expressed his gratitude to all delegates at the summit for their support and cooperation, which resulted in many satisfactory outcomes. The people of ASEAN have a better quality of life amid the challenges facing the region. ASEAN has promoted trust and cooperation to facilitate trade and to support the 16-country Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). In addition, the bloc has set up a network to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.
The Prime Minister voiced his confidence that Vietnam, as the ASEAN Chairmanship next year, will continue with efforts to move forward and ensure regional stability by incorporating continuity, complementarity and creativity in all areas.
The Vietnamese Prime Minister praised Thailand for successfully hosting the 35th ASEAN Summit. He said Vietnam will continue to support Thailand’s initiatives to promote “Partnership for Sustainability” and enhance cultural ties while preserving cultural identity of each member state. Vietnam has chosen “Cohesive and Responsive” as next year’s theme for ASEAN. The theme will focus on bringing into play the bloc’s internal strengths through solidarity and connectivity.