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Friday, April 18, 2014

Thailand to Host ASEAN-China Senior Officials Meetings

According to a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, China and the rest of the ASEAN member states will hold the 20th China-ASEAN Senior Officials' Consultation at the Dusit Thani Pattaya Hotel in Chonburi, Thailand on April 21-22, 2014.

The meeting will be held back to back with the 7th ASEAN-China Senior Officials’ Meeting on the Implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (7th ASEAN-China SOM on DOC).

Mr. Sihasak Phuangketkeow, Permanent Secretary for Foreign Affairs of Thailand, and Mr. Liu Zhenmin, Vice Foreign Minister of China, will co-chair the meetings.

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, at the 20th ACSOC, ASEAN-China Senior Officials will review progress of cooperation under the ASEAN-China framework in the past year. They will seek ways to ensure effective implementation of the outcomes of the 16th ASEAN-China Summit in October 2013 and exchange views on directions of cooperation on the basis of strategic partnership.

Emphasis is also placed on efforts to promote trade and investment, upgrade the ASEAN-China Free Trade Agreement, enhance China’s role in the development of regional connectivity, expand maritime cooperation, and organize activities to commemorate the ASEAN-China Cultural Exchange Year. 

At the 7th SOM on DOC, ASEAN Senior Officials will follow up on the outcome of the last meeting in Suzhou, China, in which ASEAN and China started official consultation on the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC). 

The Meeting will deliberate on the positive developments of the 10th ASEAN-China Joint Working Group on the DOC (10th JWG on the DOC), held in March 2014 in Singapore. It will also provide policy guidelines for the works of the JWG, both in the implementation of the DOC according to its work plan for 2014 and in the COC consultation.
Both Meetings serve as important platforms to lay necessary groundwork for the upcoming ASEAN Post Ministerial Conference with China, in August 2014 and the 17th ASEAN-China Summit in November 2014 in Myanmar.




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