Last update 7/22/2011 11:21:00 AM (GMT+7)

ASEAN, China adopt East Sea rules

VietNamNet Bridge – Foreign ministers of ASEAN member nations and China have unanimously adopted guidelines for the implementation of the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) proposed by ASEAN.

The agreement was reached at the ASEAN-China Foreign Ministers' Meeting under the co-chairmanship of Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Gia Khiem and Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jie Chi in Bali, Indonesia, yesterday, July 21.

At the meeting, the ministers confirmed their commitment to fully and effectively implement the declaration for peace, stability, security and maritime safety in the region.

They welcomed the restoration of the ASEAN-China senior officials' meeting and the finalisation of guidelines for the implementation of the DOC, considering them meaningful results and a start for the goal of building trust and accelerating the implementation of the DOC.

The ministers proposed both sides actively implement an action programme for the implementation of the Joint Declaration on the ASEAN-China Strategic Partnership for Peace and Prosperity for the period of 2011-15, especially 11 prioritised co-operative fields, namely agriculture, information and communications technology, human resources development, the development of the Mekong River basin, investment, energy, transport, culture, health care, tourism and the environment.

They also proposed to enhance mutual assistance to implement the ASEAN-China Free Trade Area (ACFTA) and the master plan on ASEAN Connectivity, as well as consider the continuation of implementing a plan of action for the period of 2011-15 that was adopted at the 13th ASEAN-China Summit in Ha Noi in 2010.

The ministers spoke highly of and agreed to carry out activities to mark the 20th founding anniversary of the ASEAN-China strategic partnership with the ASEAN-China Centre to be put into operation, the implementation of the joint declaration adopted at the third ASEAN-China Young Entrepreneurs Forum in Jakarta, Indonesia, from April 19-23 and the ASEAN-China Young Leaders Forum held in Cambodia from June 25-27.

Bilateral meetings

Khiem held bilateral meetings with countries on the sidelines of the ongoing 44th ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting and related meetings in Bali, Indonesia, with the aim of boosting bilateral co-operation.

At a meeting between Khiem and Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi yesterday, July 21, they exchanged views on the two countries' relations and issues of common concer.

The two parties affirmed the importance of developing friendly neighbourliness and comprehensive co-operation between the two Parties and two States, contributing to maintaining peace, stability and co-operation in the region.

They discussed measures to enhance future co-operation, especially preparations for visits and contacts between senior leaders of the two countries this year.

They spoke highly of the adoption of the Guidelines for the implementation of the DOC at the recent ASEAN-China Senior Officials' Meeting (SOM), considered as an important step in maintaining peace, stability in the East Sea and increasing confidence between ASEAN and China.

Khiem said that the two sides should comply with the common perceptions on the East Sea by the two countries' senior leaders - and through friendly negotiations peacefully solve differences in the sea on the basis of international law, particularly the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea, adhere to the DOC and advance to the Code of Conduct on the East Sea (COC).

Later the same day, Khiem met Australian Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd, agreeing with the need to continue implementing detailed fields of co-operation within the framework of the Viet Nam-Australia Action Plan for 2010-13.

Rudd said he highly valued the adoption of the Guidelines for the implementation of DOC by ASEAN and China.

On Tuesday, at a meeting between Khiem and Secretary of State of the Philippines Albert del Rosario, the two agreed to continue closely working on the East Sea issue within the ASEAN framework.

They stressed the need to respect and implement the DOC seriously and fully and welcomed the resumption of ASEAN-China SOM on the DOC with a view of promoting the implementation of the DOC and advancing to a COC.

VietNamNet/Viet Nam News