09:16 | 01/01/2016 Cooperation
(VEN) - The ASEAN Community is scheduled for the establishment on December 31, 2015 and will include 10 Southeast Asian countries with a population of 625 million, US$2.6 trillion worth of gross domestic product per year and common law in terms of economics, security and politics, and culture and society.
ASEAN countries have implemented 91.5 percent of priority measures that most affect trade and investment - Photo: Can Dung
Vietnam is ready for AEC
The Ministry of Industry and Trade has been assigned to direct, manage and coordinate AEC activities. According to the latest ASEAN Secretariat report on the implementation of measures under the itinerary to build the AEC Economic Community (AEC), ASEAN countries have implemented 91.5 percent of priority measures that most affect trade and investment.
According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s Multilateral Trade Policy Department, Vietnam has slashed 97 percent of import tariffs to 0-5 percent and terminated tariff quotas on eggs, sugar and salt.
In terms of trade and services, Vietnam and other ASEAN countries have completed Commitment Package 9 and are agreeing Commitment Package 10. Despite the requirement for a wider opening of the market, Vietnam has made efforts to actively resolve problems in order to realize its commitments by the end of this year.
Vietnam and other six ASEAN countries including Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand have launched the national one-window mechanism and have implemented the ASEAN one-window mechanism on several projects.
The countries are evaluating incomplete tasks, are verifying the reasons for their delays and are further boosting the implementation of remaining measures under the approved itinerary.
“December 31 is an important milestone for ASEAN as it is not the time the establishment of ASEAN is completed but the process will continue at a higher level when all the institutions become affective and continue improving. ASEAN member countries will continue to implement the plan after 2015, from 2016-2025,” said Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh.
ASEAN with a 10-year vision
At the recent ASEAN 27, the member countries agreed to continue implementing the 10-year vision goal until 2025 with a focus on people.
ASEAN will continue to connect at an increasing level. The Political-Security Community will play a central role in setting up regional security by 2025, while at the same time deepening relations with external partners and contribute to peace, security and stability.
During this time, the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC) will become a sustainable community, boost social development and protect the environment via effective mechanisms to meet people’s current and future needs. It will also become a dynamic and harmonious community and be aware and proud of its identities, culture and heritage, while at the same time strengthening creativity and actively contributing to the global community.
“The period after 2015 will see a higher level of ASEAN connectivity and also many new challenges. However, we believe that with their maturity and experiences, the member countries will have sufficient strengths and determination to continue to develop the ASEAN community in the role of connecting the region and the world,” said ASEAN General Secretary Le Luong Minh.
ASEAN will not only deeply integrate with the global security and economic structure but also continue creating many practical benefits for people and member countries such as providing favorable conditions to access the market, reduce the price of goods and services via the ending of tariffs, reduce the unemployment rate and facilitate travel.