On the evening of November 14, 2021, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with diplomatic envoys of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries to China in Beijing.
Wang Yi said that as the largest neighbor and most reliable long-term strategic partner of ASEAN countries, China has always been a firm supporter of the building of ASEAN community and the centrality of ASEAN in the regional cooperation architecture. Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, President Xi Jinping has maintained close communication and mutual support with ASEAN leaders to further consolidate and deepen bilateral friendly cooperation. The two sides will soon jointly hold a summit commemorating the 30th anniversary of the establishment of dialogue relations between China and ASEAN countries. This will be a milestone meeting to chart the course for the development of bilateral relations in the next 30 years. Powered by the 30th anniversary of the establishment of dialogue relations, China is ready to work with ASEAN countries to take the summit as an opportunity to jointly overcome the challenges brought by the pandemic, promote economic recovery and growth, safeguard regional peace, stability and prosperity, promote regional integration and economic globalization, practice multilateralism and open regionalism, and stride forward towards building an even closer China-ASEAN community with a shared future.
Wang Yi pointed out that China will continue to provide vaccine support to ASEAN countries until the pandemic is completely defeated. China is ready to work with ASEAN countries to launch the Version 3.0 China-ASEAN Free Trade Area, expand cooperation in the digital and green economy, explore new measures for trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, and fully implement the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership as scheduled, so as to inject strong impetus into regional economic recovery and growth. The Global Development Initiative, proposed by President Xi Jinping at the general debate of the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly, aims to steadily advance the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This initiative has been echoed and supported by the United Nations and many countries. China is ready to work with ASEAN countries to focus on development and make positive contributions to this end.
Wang Yi said that China and ASEAN countries have always placed the South China Sea issue in an appropriate position in bilateral relations and promoted the deepening and development of bilateral cooperation. Noting that next year marks the 20th anniversary of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), Wang Yi hopes that the two sides will take this opportunity to advance consultations on the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea on the basis of the comprehensive and effective implementation of the DOC, jointly uphold peace and stability in the South China Sea and seek win-win cooperation.
Wang Yi introduced major achievements obtained at the sixth plenary session of the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), stressing that the plenum’s communique will guide China to move more firmly on a new journey toward the second centenary goal. The development and revitalization of China symbolize the growth of a peaceful force and will contribute more to world peace and development.
The diplomatic envoys of ASEAN countries to China extended congratulations on the success of the sixth plenary session of the 19th Central Committee of the CPC, spoke highly of the fruitful results in the development of bilateral ties and sincerely thanked China for its support to the region’s fight against the pandemic and economic recovery. The diplomatic envoys expressed their hope to work with China to jointly hold a successful summit commemorating the 30th anniversary of the dialogue relations, seize opportunities, cooperate to meet challenges, and promote the establishment of a comprehensive strategic partnership of strategic and substantive significance and mutual benefit. The Global Development Initiative proposed by China will help accelerate the implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. ASEAN countries have full confidence in China’s future growth, and hope to further deepen cooperation with China in economy and trade, green economy, climate change, people-to-people exchanges and sustainable development, so as to bring more benefits to the two peoples and promote regional peace, stability and prosperity.
The two sides also exchanged views on international and regional issues of common concern.