ASEAN Locomotive of Regional Stability and Welfare



Media – Indonesia wants ASEAN to truly become a locomotive for regional stability and prosperity. This statement was made by President Joko Widodo when attending the 39th ASEAN Summit virtually from the Bogor Presidential Palace, Tuesday (26/10/2021).


In the President’s view, this year is not an easy year for ASEAN. “We live in a very dynamic situation, where the rivalry between the big powers is becoming more and more prominent,” said President Jokowi.


The President asked ASEAN not to get carried away with jargons that make you complacent. “We must work hard to strengthen ASEAN’s unity and centrality. We must immediately strengthen the capacity and effectiveness of ASEAN institutions,” said the President.


Therefore, the High-Level Task Force which will start working next year on developing the ASEAN Vision post-2025 also needs to discuss recommendations for strengthening ASEAN.


Indonesia hopes, said the President, by the end of next year to accept the recommendation and make a decision for its implementation in 2023. “Thus, ASEAN will be ready and immediately take off to realize the New Vision post-2025.


Indonesia has submitted a concept paper for discussions on strengthening ASEAN. I really appreciate the support of the ASEAN leaders for this Indonesian initiative,” said the President.


Another thing that President Jokowi said at this summit was that ASEAN really hopes that democracy through an inclusive process can be quickly restored in Myanmar because the people of Myanmar have the right to live in peace and prosperity.


The President reminded that when there was a Leaders’ Meeting in Jakarta on April 24, he saw optimism that as one family, ASEAN would be able to help Myanmar out of its political crisis. It is a family commitment to help family members. “Unfortunately, this family’s helping hand was not welcomed by the Myanmar military.


The access requested by the ASEAN Special Envoy until the final moments of the Summit has not been granted by the Myanmar military,” said the President.


ASEAN’s decision to invite Myanmar at a non-political level and provide an opportunity for Myanmar to resolve domestic issues first, is a tough decision but it must be done.


“On the one hand we maintain respect for the principle of non-interference, but on the other hand, we are also obliged to uphold other principles in the ASEAN Charter, such as democracy, good governance, respect for human rights, and constitutional government,” said the President.


This decision also provides space for ASEAN to continue to make progress, as we promised the people of ASEAN. However, a helping hand must still be offered to Myanmar, including the provision of humanitarian assistance to the people of Myanmar.


The last issue that the President brought up was the implementation of the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP). “AOIP has very clear principles. It is time for all of us to pay attention to concrete cooperation in implementing the AOIP,” said the President.


In this regard, in 2023 Indonesia will hold an Indo-Pacific infrastructure cooperation forum. This forum will be held when Indonesia holds the mandate as Chair of ASEAN. “I hope that we will continue to strengthen cooperation within the framework of the AOIP,” said the President. (BPMI SETPRES/UN)


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