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On the morning of September 14th, 2022, the opening of the 54th ASEAN Economic Ministers' (AEM) Meeting occurred in Siam Reap, Cambodia. The meeting enjoyed the participation of the Cambodian Minister of Trade, Mr. Pan Sorasak, the Chair, Economic Ministers from 10 ASEAN member countries, and the ASEAN Secretary-General Lim Jock Hoi.
The Vietnamese delegation that attended the meeting included representatives of three ministries: Industry and Trade, Planning and Investment, and Foreign Affairs, which were led by Mr. Nguyen Hong Dien, Minister of Industry and Trade. At this conference, the minister shared information and other updated situations on Vietnam's implementation measures to support economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic, giving special attention to the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework, Bandar Seri Begawan Roadmap (BSBR) on ASEAN digital transformation to accelerate the ASEAN economic recovery and digital economic integration, etc.
The ASEAN ministers exchanged and acknowledged a few problems concerned: (1) the implementation status of the priority initiatives of the 2022 ASEAN Chair - Cambodia's economic cooperation, (2) the ASEAN long-term action plans for the sustainable economic development of the regions, (3) the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA), (4) ASEAN competition policy, (5) the initiative to enhance the rotation of containers in ASEAN, (6) the plan to implement the circulating economic framework for the ASEAN Economic Community, (7) the recommendations of the HLTF-EI, and the preparation for the ASEAN Summit and related conferences take place in November 2022.
The Ministers also discussed the economic cooperation activities between ASEAN and dialogue partners, such as the US, China, the EU, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, India, Russia, and the UK. The discussion included upgrading the FTA between ASEAN, Australia, and New Zealand, the implementation of RCEP, and the approval for the Intensive assessment of the Effects of Timor Leste joining the ASEAN economic agreement.
Conference's sidelines also discussed the problem of Intellectual Property (IP) with the General Director of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) - Daren Tang, and IP rights for start-ups and SMEs with the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ABAC). ABAC is aimed at promoting economic integration in the region and supporting economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic.
Adhering to the Conference, Vietnam contributed positive ideas to the issue of ASEAN internal economic cooperation such as the preparation for the implementation of the ATIGA upgrade, strengthening the handling of the Non-tariff barriers among ASEAN countries, ASEAN trading activities, and recommendations for the economic cooperation between ASEAN and foreign partners to result in practical benefits for businesses in Vietnam and ASEAN after the pandemic.
On the evening of September 15, 2022, the closing of the 54th AEM occurred, followed up by a series of ASEAN - dialogue partner meetings from 16/09/2022 to 18/09/2022.
Multi-lateral Trade Policy Department, Ministry of Industry and Trade.