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European Union External Action

Joint Statement on the 40th Anniversary of the Establishment of ASEAN-EU Dialogue Relations

We, the Foreign Ministers of the Member States of the Association of Southeast
Asian Nations (ASEAN), and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign
Affairs and Security Policy / Vice-President of the Commission, gathered on 6
August 2017 in Manila, the Philippines, at the Post Ministerial Conference
(PMC) +1 Session with the European Union (EU) to commemorate the 40th
Anniversary of the Establishment of ASEAN-EU Dialogue Relations;

Recognising that 2017 marks the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome, the
50th anniversary of the establishment of ASEAN and the 40th anniversary of the
establishment of ASEAN-EU Dialogue Relations; and stressing that over the
last four decades, regional integration has made a very positive contribution to
peace, stability, security and prosperity in Southeast Asia, Europe and globally
and reaffirming the crucial role that regionalism and multilateralism can play in
today's world;

Also recognising that there is great strength and resilience in the ASEAN-EU
partnership as the two organizations combined account for some 18 percent of
the world's population and 26 percent of the world's GDP, and recalling that
ASEAN and the EU have also made many important contributions to global
peace, stability and prosperity, to addressing the challenge of global issues, and
to reinforcing multilateralism;

Emphasizing the importance of the shared values and common interests that
bind the two regions in a long-standing and unique relationship as “partners in
integration”, such as the principles of mutual respect for the independence,
sovereignty, equality for all states, and including other principles of the United
Nations (UN) Charter, international law and the Treaty of Amity (TAC) and
Cooperation in Southeast Asia, to which the EU acceded in 2012;

Reaffirming the commitment to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development
and to promoting and protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms, the
rule of law, gender equality and women's empowerment;

Recalling the decision of the 20th ASEAN-EU Ministerial Meeting in Brussels
in 2014 and the 21st ASEAN-EU Ministerial Meeting in Bangkok in 2016 for
ASEAN and the EU to work towards elevating their partnership to a strategic


ASEAN and the EU hereby:

1. Celebrate the 40th anniversary of ASEAN-EU Dialogue Relations and resolve
to accelerate efforts in working towards a strategic partnership between ASEAN
and the EU by strengthening cooperation both in traditional areas of dialogue
and cooperation including trade, connectivity, development cooperation,
energy, research and on political and security issues, as called for in the
Bangkok Declaration;

2. Welcome the adoption of the new ASEAN-EU Plan of Action 2018-2022,
which covers concrete cooperation programmes in a wide range of fields, as a
testament to the breadth and depth of the relations between ASEAN and the EU;

3. Resolve to further enhance political and security dialogue and cooperation
between ASEAN and the EU with a view to strengthening regional capabilities
in traditional and non-traditional security areas, and in this connection, welcome
strengthened dialogue and cooperation on maritime security, counter-terrorism,
cyber security, preventive diplomacy and mediation as well as crisis
management between ASEAN and the EU;

4. Reiterate their support for ASEAN centrality in the evolving regional
architecture in East Asia. The EU appreciates ASEAN’s role as the driving
force for, and its important contribution to, promoting dialogue, moderation and
cooperation for peace, security, stability and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific
region and beyond. ASEAN welcomes the interest of the EU in furthering
engagement with the region through all ASEAN-led processes. The EU
reiterates its support for the ASEAN Community Vision 2025: Forging Ahead
Together towards a rules-based, people-oriented, people-centred Community;

5. Reaffirm the importance of connectivity and of the economic partnership
between ASEAN and the EU with the aim to increasing trade and investment
between the two regions and reaffirm their commitment to intensify work
towards the resumption of the ASEAN-EU Free Trade Agreement (FTA)
negotiations, noting the status of bilateral FTAs between several ASEAN
Member States and the EU. They also reaffirm their commitment towards the
conclusion of an ambitious and forward-looking region-to-region
Comprehensive Air Transport Agreement;

6. Reaffirm their strong commitment to the full and effective implementation of
the Paris Agreement under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change
and call on all partners to keep up the momentum created in 2015. They also
reaffirm their commitment to the promotion of renewable energy and energy


7. Reaffirm the importance of people-to-people contacts and linkages involving,
among others, youth, media, academics, think-tank institutions, parliamentary
bodies and civil societies; promote cooperation on education as well as
encourage mobility of students and academics between ASEAN and the EU
higher education institutions; and enhance cooperation in science, technology
and innovation;

8. Reaffirm our commitment to regionalism and multilateralism which are
mutually reinforcing and which contribute to the peace, security, stability and
prosperity of not only the two regions but also the world;

9. Underline the importance of the respect for the rule of law, sovereignty and
territorial integrity of States, maritime security and safety, freedom of
navigation and overflight, peaceful resolution of disputes, in accordance with
the universally recognized principles of international law, including the 1982
United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the relevant
standards and recommended practices by the International Civil Aviation
Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organisation (IMO);

10. Underscore the full and effective implementation of the 2002 Declaration on
the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) in its entirety and support
the efforts of ASEAN Member States and China to work towards the early
conclusion of an effective Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC); and

11. Invite the peoples of the two regions to celebrate this important 40th
Anniversary of ASEAN-EU Dialogue Relations, in order to promote greater
understanding and awareness of ASEAN-EU cooperation among the peoples of
both regions.
Adopted at the Post Ministerial Conference (PMC) +1 Session with the EU on
6 August 2017 in Manila, the Philippines.