Press Release of the Chairman on the ASEAN+1 Summit Meetings between the Heads of State/Government of ASEAN and China, Japan and the Republic of Korea

Manila, 28 November 1999

1. The Summit Meetings of the Heads of State/Government of ASEAN member states and the Premier of the People's Republic of China, the Prime Minister of Japan, and the President of the Republic of Korea was held in Manila, Philippines on 28 November 1999.

2. H.E. Joseph Ejercito Estrada, President of the Republic of the Philippines, chaired the ASEAN-China, ASEAN-Japan, and ASEAN-Republic of Korea Summit Meetings. Also in attendance were H.M. Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah, Sultan of Brunei Darussalam; H.E. Hun Sen, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia; H.E. Zhu Rongji, Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China; H.E. Abdurrahman Wahid, President of the Republic of Indonesia; H.E. Keizo Obuchi, Prime Minister of Japan; H.E. Kim Dae Jung, President of the Republic of Korea (ROK); H.E. Sisavath Keobounphanh, Prime Minister of the Lao People's Democratic Republic; H.E. Senior General Than Shwe, Chairman of the State Peace and Development Council and Prime Minister of the Union of Myanmar; H.E. Goh Chok Tong, Prime Minister of Singapore; H.E. Chuan Leekpai, Prime Minister of Thailand, and, H.E. Phan Van Khai, Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam.

Highlights of the ASEAN-China Summit Meeting

3. The ASEAN Heads of State/Government noted with appreciation China's decision not to devalue the renminbi as an important gesture in support of a hastened regional recovery. In addition, they noted that the ongoing mechanism provided by the meeting of the finance and central bank leaders and officials of ASEAN, China, Japan and the Republic of Korea contributes to the broadening of regional cooperation in the financial and monetary fields.

4. The Heads of State/Government of ASEAN and China emphasized the importance of cooperation in the field of science and technology, and noted the need to strengthen the role of the ASEAN-China Joint Cooperation Committee on enhancing cooperation in this area. China also reiterated its full support to assist in the implementation of the Hanoi Plan of Action.

5. The Heads of State/Governments of ASEAN and China urged the pursuit of concrete measures towards promoting and facilitating trade, encouraging the flow of investment, promoting counter-trade, developing small and medium enterprises, enhancing research and development, and harnessing the opportunities presented by the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA), the ASEAN Investment Area (AIA) and the ASEAN Industrial Cooperation (AICO) Scheme.

6. The Heads of State/Government of ASEAN and China recalled the Joint Statement on ASEAN-China Cooperation Towards the 21st Century in December 1997 in Kuala Lumpur. They reaffirmed the need to promote peace, stability and prosperity in the region, and nurture the spirit of friendship, good neighborliness and mutual trust. China affirmed its intention to accede to the Protocol to the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapons-Free Zone (SEANWFZ) Treaty as soon as it is ready for signing and its adherence to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC) in Southeast Asia.

7. The Heads of State/Government of ASEAN and China reaffirmed their commitment to resolve their differences through friendly consultations and peaceful means, and agreed to continue discussions on a code of conduct in the South China Sea with a view to its adoption.

Highlights of the ASEAN-Japan Summit Meeting

8. The ASEAN Heads of State/Government and the Prime Minister of Japan noted with satisfaction the fast-paced progress and dynamism that characterize the ASEAN-Japan Dialogue Relations, especially in the wake of the East Asian economic crisis. ASEAN thanked Japan for its extensive assistance to the region to help address the consequences of the crisis amounting to approximately US$ 80 billion.

9. ASEAN noted Japan's presentation of the report of the Okuda Mission, which visited various ASEAN capitals to determine ways to revitalize the Asian economy, particularly through human resource development, people-to-people exchange and opening up of labor markets. In this regard, they welcomed the announcement of the follow-up mission early next year, which will implement the Obuchi Plan for enhancing human resources development and human resources exchanges.

10. The ASEAN Heads of State/Government and the Prime Minister of Japan welcomed the adoption of the ASEAN-Japan Joint Action Plan of the AEM-MITI Economic and Industrial Cooperation Committee (AMEICC) as a means to further broaden economic cooperation, particularly the development of SMEs and supporting industries, and the promotion of trade and investment. Moreover, recognizing its substantial contribution to ASEAN-Japan economic cooperation, the Heads of State/Government agreed to continue supporting the ASEAN Promotion Center (APC) in Tokyo with a view to making it a permanent institution. ASEAN noted with gratitude Japan's annual contribution to the APC, but nevertheless called on Japan to increase its voluntary share annually.

11. ASEAN expressed appreciation for Japan's support for the implementation of the Hanoi Plan of Action. Stressing the urgency of addressing the social impact of the economic crisis as well as the continuing need for International assistance, ASEAN expressed the hope that Japan could support ASEAN projects in the areas of social safety nets, human resources development (HRD), poverty eradication and information technology, among others.

12. The Heads of State/Government of ASEAN and Japan agreed on the need to deepen cooperation to combat transnational crime, particularly in addressing the problem of piracy. The ASEAN Heads of State/Government welcomed Japan's offer to host an international conference of coast guard authorities next year to explore possible cooperative approaches in this area.

Highlights of the ASEAN-Republic of Korea Summit Meeting

13. The Heads of State/Government of ASEAN and ROK welcomed the convening of the First Meeting of the East Asia Vision Group, which has held in Seoul on 21-22 October 1999. They encouraged the Vision Group to develop and recommend practical and appropriate approaches to broaden and deepen East Asian cooperation.

14. ASEAN reaffirmed its support for ROK's efforts in attaining peace in the Korean Peninsula. They expressed the hope that the reduction of tension and the advancement of peaceful co-existence will materialize through the comprehensive approach based on ROK's engagement policy, the encouraging results of which include the increasing civilian exchanges between the South and the North. The Heads of State/Government of ASEAN and ROK emphasized the importance of the resumption of inter-Korean official talks. On the Four Party Talks, they expressed optimism that it can contribute to the establishment of a permanent peace mechanism in the Korean Peninsula.

15. ASEAN commended ROK's rapid recovery from the financial crisis, and expressed appreciation for its continued support for ASEAN cooperation programs. ASEAN expressed appreciation to ROK for its annual contributions to the ASEAN-ROK Special Cooperation Fund (SCF), amounting to US$ 2 million, and reiterated its interest to pursue regional initiatives to ensure an effective and substantive use of the SCF.

16. The Heads of State/Government of ASEAN and ROK expressed satisfaction on the positive developments in ASEAN-ROK Dialogue Relations and noted the steady progress in the implementation of cooperation projects in a variety of areas, including future-oriented projects.

17. ROK also expressed its interest to assist in the implementation of the human resources development programs in the Hanoi Plan of Action, focusing on knowledge-based training and people-to-people exchanges.

Back to Index