Foreign ministers of ASEAN countries on November 21 issued a joint statement welcoming the recent summit between US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping and stressing the importance of a regional architecture anchored in international law.
In their statement, they said they were encouraged by the continued commitment of the US and Chinese leaders, who met in California on November 15, 2023, to maintain open lines of communication and manage the two countries’ relationship responsibly by building on the November 2022 meeting in Bali.
Both China and the US are comprehensive strategic partners of ASEAN. The ASEAN foreign ministers welcomed the two countries’ commitments to the key principles, shared values, and norms enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC), the Declaration of the East Asia Summit (EAS) on the Principles for Mutually Beneficial Relations (Bali Principles), and the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP).
They affirmed the sharing of the common interest to reinforce an open, transparent, resilient, and inclusive regional architecture anchored in international law, with ASEAN at the centre as guided by the purposes and principles of ASEAN and ASEAN-led mechanisms, and to build trust and confidence among all countries in the region.
The statement said ASEAN encourages China and the US, as long-standing partners of ASEAN, to continuing supporting the ASEAN Community building process and peace, stability, and prosperity of the Southeast Asian region, based on mutual interests and mutual benefits.
ASEAN stands ready to work together with China and the US in maintaining and promoting the region as an epicentrum of growth by building resilience against emerging challenges and future shocks through engagement and cooperation, and safeguarding peace, security and development in the region and the world at large, according to the statement./.