ASEAN Plus Three Cooperation
ASEAN PLUS THREE COOPERATION
1. Since the process began in 1997, ASEAN Plus Three (APT) cooperation has broadened and deepened. It includes cooperation in the areas of food and energy security, financial cooperation, trade facilitation, disaster management, people-to-people contacts, narrowing the development gap, rural development and poverty alleviation, social welfare, human trafficking, labour, communicable diseases, environment and sustainable development, and transnational crime, including counter-terrorism.
2. A Second Joint Statement on East Asia Cooperation and the ASEAN Plus Three Cooperation Work Plan (2007-2017) were adopted at the 11th APT Summit in November 2007 in Singapore. The documents contain accomplishments, opportunities and challenges faced by APT and provide strategic guidance for the future direction of APT cooperation. At the same time, the Summit also endorsed the proposal to establish an ASEAN Plus Three Cooperation Fund (APTCF) to facilitate the implementation of the Work Plan. The Fund was launched formally during the 9th APT Foreign Ministers Meeting in July 2008 in Singapore.
3. Subsequently, the Guidelines to implement the Second Joint Statement on East Asia Cooperation and the ASEAN Plus Three Cooperation Work Plan (2007-2017) was endorsed at the 13th APT Directors-General Meeting on 3 July 2009 in Seoul.
4. Against the backdrop of the 1997 Asian financial crisis, at the APT Summit in December 1998, the formation of an East Asia Vision Group. (EAVG) was proposed. The Vision Group would be composed of eminent intellectuals charged with the task of drawing up a vision for mid-to-long term cooperation in East Asia for the 21st century. The Vision Group explored ways to expand and intensify mid-to-long term cooperation in political and socio-cultural sectors, including economic ties to facilitate further development of the East Asian region. Its findings were submitted in a report to the APT Summit in 2001.
5. After one decade since the EAVG submitted its report to the APT Leaders, the East Asia Vision Group II (EAVG II) was established in October 2011 with the purpose of reviewing the APT cooperation over the past 15 years and provide future vision of the APT for the next decades. The EAVG II met four times in October 2011, February 2012, May 2012 and September 2012. The EAVG II Report has been finalised and will be submitted to the 15th APT Summit in Cambodia in November 2012.
6. The APT countries reaffirmed at the 14th APT Summit in November 2011 in Bali that the APT process would continue as a main vehicle towards the long-term goal of building an East Asian community with ASEAN as the driving force. The meeting also reaffirmed their support for ASEAN centrality in the evolving regional architecture and recognised the mutually reinforcing and complementary roles of the APT process and such regional fora as ASEAN Plus One, East Asia Summit (EAS) and the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) in the East Asian community building process.
Finance and Economic Cooperation
7. In finance and monetary cooperation, progress has been steady and the focus continues to be on the implementation of the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralisation (CMIM) and the Asian Bond Market Initiative (ABMI). The CMIM is now being supported by the new APT Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO) in Singapore, which commenced its operations in May 2011.
8. ASEAN trade with the Plus Three Countries remained robust even in the context of the uncertainties of the global economy. In 2011, total trade recorded an increase of 26.2 per cent, amounting to US$678.2 billion. Exports and imports grew by 34.9 per cent and 18.0 per cent, respectively. Total trade with Plus Three Countries accounted for 28.4 per cent share of ASEAN's total trade in 2011.[i]
9. Total foreign direct investment (FDI) flow from the Plus Three Countries into ASEAN remained on an upward trend, recording an increase of 29.5 per cent amounting to US$41.2 billion in 2011 from US$31.8 billion in 2010. FDI flow from the Plus Three Countries accounted for nearly half (46.2 per cent) of the total FDI flows into ASEAN in 2011[ii].
10. At the 14th APT Summit, the Leaders noted the adoption of the ASEAN Framework for Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership which reiterates the importance of ASEAN centrality in the regional economic integration process and sets out the general principles for broadening and deepening ASEANs engagement with its FTA partners, using as a basis the ASEAN Plus One FTAs and the template that would be developed taking into account the EAFTA and CEPEA initiatives, with a view to considering appropriate next steps for further regional economic integration.
11. Cooperation on environment continues to grow. Cooperation on environment continues to grow. At the 12th APT Environment Ministers Meeting held on 27 September 2012 in Bangkok, the Ministers noted the progress of cooperation, particularly the area addressing the issue of environment and sustainable development. The 5th APT Leadership Programme on Sustainable Production and Consumption, a programme for the private sector to discuss green economy, was held on 17 19 October 2012 in Manila. The Second ASEAN Plus Three Youth Environment was proposed to be held in November 2013 under the theme Youth and Sustainability.
12. The APT cooperation on labour is also progressing well. The Seventh APT Labour Ministers Meeting (ALMM+3) was held on 11 May 2012 in Phnom Penh. The Ministers shared the best practices in their respective countries on improving social protection and skills development and gratified with the joint activities among the APT countries in the area of labour.
13. On health, the APT cooperation is also progressing well, particularly in the areas of traditional medicines and maternal and child health. Another important cooperation is on communicable and emerging infectious diseases, which include such initiatives as Field Epidemiology Training Network (FETN), Risk Communication, Partnership Laboratories, Animal Health and Human Health Collaboration, as well as specific disease interventions including malaria, rabies and dengue.
14. The APT countries continue to strengthen their cooperation on culture. At the Fifth Meeting of the APT Ministers Responsible for Culture and Arts (AMCA+3) held on 24 May 2012 in Singapore, the Ministers noted the constructive role of AMCA+3 cooperation mechanism in facilitating closer cooperation in the areas of cultural heritage protection, cultural human resource development and the cultural industries as well as facilitating discussions on policy sharing in the implementation of arts and culture policies. The Ministers endorsed the draft Work Plan on Enhancing APT Cooperation in Culture.
15. To move further the APT cooperation on information, the Second Conference of the APT Ministers Responsible for Information (AMRI+3) held on 1 March 2012 in Kuala Lumpur endorsed the Work Plan on Enhancing APT Cooperation Through Information and Media 2012-2017. The Work Plan lists out programmes that ASEAN and the Plus Three countries could collaborate on. ASEAN Member States have agreed to take the lead in coordinating 17 concrete activities listed in the Work Plan.
16. On education, a new mechanism for cooperation at ministerial level was established, namely the ASEAN Plus Three Education Ministers Meeting (APT-EMM). The First APT-EMM was held on 4 July 2012 in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. At the Meeting, the Education Ministers reaffirmed their commitments in strengthening cooperation and joint efforts to promote development in the education sector and to address common challenges of education in the region.
As of 23 October 2012
Reference : http://www.asean.org/news/item/asean-plus-three-cooperation