Detiktoday.com – The Indo-Pacific reflects Indonesia’s view of the spirit of this region as a zone of peace, freedom, and neutrality, representatives of countries participating in the Indo-Pacific dialogue include Australia, Brunei Darussalam, New Zealand, China, South Korea, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Russia and the Philippines.
Indonesia stressed the need to strengthen cooperation in handling the COVID-19 pandemic, especially cooperation in health infrastructure, economic recovery, and connectivity in the Indo-Pacific region.
The statement was conveyed by the Chairperson of SOM Indonesia / Director General of ASEAN Cooperation, Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Jose Tavares at a meeting of senior East Asia Summit (EAS SOM) officials, Monday, July 20, 2020 by video teleconference in Jakarta.
“This is the right time (for EAS) to strengthen cooperation (multilateral and regional) to overcome the various effects of a pandemic, in addition to the public health system, health infrastructure and connectivity – this is the key to maintaining economic growth in the region,” said Jose Tavares.
The Chairperson of SOM Indonesia also believes that Indonesia’s initiative to hold the EAS Health Experts Meeting will accelerate the handling of pandemics in the region, especially strengthening the cooperation of experts in pandemic diseases and viruses and formulation of Health protocols related to essential movement of persons in minimizing the impact of covid-19.
In the context of infrastructure and connectivity, Indonesia also reiterated plans to hold a World Economic Forum on ASEAN: the Indo-Pacific Infrastructure and Connectivity in 2021.
Indonesia specifically encourages EAS countries and international organizations in the region to continue to enhance multilateral cooperation in the midst of difficult situations such as this pandemic. It is hoped that the EAS Forum can support rapid economic recovery.
“Concrete cooperation like this will not only encourage higher economic growth but also strengthen strategic trust between countries in the region,” said Director General Tavares.
“Of course we all do not want the Southeast Asian Region to be weak and left behind because of this pandemic. If we do not deal immediately, then economic, social, and regional instability will occur, “said Director General Tavares, observing how the problem of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis is a common challenge today.
The meeting of senior EAS officials attended by all EAS participating countries / governments had discussed a number of prominent issues of common interest in the region, including efforts to accelerate ASEAN economic recovery during the COVID 19 pandemic through maintaining smooth connectivity of goods, services and economic actors; the South China Sea issue (LCS), the Korean Peninsula issue, terrorism, and the repatriation process at Rakhine State.