Chairman's Statement of the Fourth Mekong-Japan Foreign Ministers' Meeting
July 21, 2011
1.The Fourth Mekong-Japan Foreign Ministers' Meeting was held in Bali, Indonesia, on 21 July 2011 back-toback with the 44th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting. The Meeting was chaired by H.E. Mr. Takeaki Matsumoto, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan and participated by H.E. Dr. Kao Kim Hourn, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the Kingdom of Cambodia, H.E. Dr. Thongloun Sisoulith, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Lao People's Democratic Republic, H.E. Mr. Wunna Maung Lwin,Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, H.E. Mrs. Chitriya Pinthong, Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand, H.E. Mr. Pham Gia Khiem, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
2.Mr. Takeaki Matsumoto, the Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs, deeply appreciated the warm support for Japan from the Mekong region countries and people on the Great East Japan Earth quake and tsumani on 11 March 2011. The Ministers reaffirmed the solidarity among Japan and the Mekong region countries.
Cooperation under "New Partnership for the Common Flourishing Future"
3.The Ministers had fruitful discussions on various issues of common interest, including the progress and the future direction of the Mekong-Japan cooperation and reaffirmed their determination to strengthen the Mekong-Japan cooperation. The Ministers considered "Tokyo Declaration" and "Action Plan 63" as the guidelines for a successful establishment of the "New Partnership for the Common Flourishing Future" between Japan and the Mekong region countries.
4.The Ministers highly appreciated the remarkable progress of the implementation of "Action Plan 63" and other initiatives proposed by the Mekong region countries, including CLV, CLMV and ACMECS cooperation frameworks since the Third Mekong-Japan Foreign Ministers' Meeting. The Ministers also recognized the necessity to review the programs in the "Action Plan 63," and to identify priority areas in response to the situation of the region.
5.The Ministers welcomed the progress of the implementation of the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity. The Ministers emphasized the importance of the positive synergy of the Mekong-Japan cooperation and enhancing ASEAN Connectivity.
6.The Ministers welcomed the success of the "Green Mekong Forum," which was co-hosted by the Government of Japan and the Government of Thailand on 24 June 2011, in Bangkok, and participated by representatives from the Mekong region countries, private sector, and the local authorities. The Ministers welcomed the "public and private cooperation approach" in addressing climate change and other environmental issues, including natural disaster mitigation/preparedness, and shared their understanding that such an approach is vital in achieving both environmental protection and economic growth in the region. The Ministers emphasized the need to strengthen the cooperation and coordination with related regional and international institutions/organizations particularly the Mekong River Commission, in order to promote the sustainable development, utilization, conservation and management of water and related resources of the Mekong River. The Ministers shared the view of the importance to further discussion on establishing the bilateral offset credit mechanism.
7.The Ministers appreciated Japan's new initiative for "Disaster Management Network for the ASEAN Region," which is a comprehensive approach, including developing a regional information-sharing network through satellites, dispatching experts and conducting training in Japan.
8.The Ministers welcomed the growth of the investment to this region. The Ministers emphasized the importance of further improvement of the business environment. The Ministers highly appreciated Japan's initiative as well as its efforts to public-private cooperation in the Mekong region, such as "Forum for the Promotion of Public-Private Cooperation in the Mekong Region," which was held in Tokyo on 14 December, 2010, participated by both public and private sectors of Japan and the Mekong region countries. The Ministers welcomed Japan's decision to hold the second Forum later this year before the Third Mekong-Japan Summit Meeting. The Ministers commended the progress of public and private cooperation such as investment seminars, dispatch of Investment Missions and experts, as well as public-private dialogues with Japanese business communities organized in the Mekong region countries. The Ministers reaffirmed the necessity to utilize public and private cooperation to ensure economic prosperity and to increase the flow of trade and investment to the region.
9.The Ministers also recognized the significance of the human security issues. In this regard, they shared the understanding that the food security and safety, as well as maternal, newborn and child health and infectious diseases should be the prioritized issues, in order to overcome vulnerability and achieve the Millennium Development Goals in this region.
10.The Ministers welcomed the proposition of Japan to set the issues mentioned above as prioritized agenda to be discussed in the Third Mekong-Japan Summit.
11.The Ministers were briefed by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar of the recent development in Myanmar and positive steps toward democratization and national reconciliation and reconsolidation. The Ministers expressed their appreciation and hoped that Myanmar would continue to further accelerate the process of democratization, national reconciliation and reconsolidation. They also shared the view to support the efforts of the Myanmar government.
Regional and Global Issues
12.The Ministers reaffirmed their determination to enhance close cooperation on regional and global issues of common concern, and to deepen and broaden the existing Mekong-Japan cooperation to ensure peace, stability and prosperity in the region.
13.The Ministers expressed the importance of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in accordance with the 2005 Joint Statement of the Six-Party Talks and the relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions. In this context, concern was expressed regarding North Korea's recently disclosed uranium enrichment activities. The Ministers stressed that concrete actions would create an environment conducive to the resumption of the Six-Party Talks and underlined the importance of sincere and constructive inter-Korean dialogue as an essential step. The Ministers also underscored the importance of the steady implementation of the measures under the relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions. Furthermore, the Ministers underlined the importance for North Korea to respond to humanitarian concerns of the international community, such as the abduction issue.
14.The Ministers agreed that maritime issues should be solved through peaceful consultations and in accordance with universally recognized principles of international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) for peace, stability and development in the Asia Pacific region.
15.The Ministers stressed the importance to enhance cooperation in the areas of disarmament and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery, combating illicit transfer and trafficking of WMD-related materials and small arms and light weapons.
16.The Ministers looked forward to convening the Third Mekong-Japan Summit Meeting to be held in Indonesia in 2011, as well as the next Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Cambodia in 2012 to be organized by Cambodia.
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