| Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc
The statement showed the concern of ASEAN leaders about the complicated developments of the epidemic, which have adversely affected people’s life and the development of ASEAN countries as well as the region and the world as a whole.
Emphasizing the regional bloc’s solidarity and spirit of a “cohesive and responsive” community, ASEAN leaders affirmed their strong commitment to joining hands to control the spread of the epidemic, thus ensuring a safe life for their people.
The statement welcomed the efforts in the framework of ASEAN medical cooperation and cooperation with partners (China, Japan and the Republic of Korea), and stressed that ASEAN will bolster coordination at both national and regional levels, work hand in hand among relevant sectors for a synchronized and effective approach of the ASEAN Community as well as for stronger cooperation with the World Health Organization, partners and international organizations in preventing and controlling the epidemic.
It also affirmed solidarity and strong support of ASEAN for the great efforts of the Government and people of China as well as the international community in coping with the epidemic.
ASEAN member states will maintain the open-door policy and consent to coordinate in quarantine work at border gates of member countries, the statement said, while underscoring the need to call on diplomatic representative agencies of ASEAN countries in a third country to provide consular support for ASEAN citizens when necessary, and cooperate to combat fake information on the COVID-19 epidemic.
ASEAN leaders pledged to give a high priority to fighting the epidemic and called for combined efforts of the international community.
As part of the ASEAN’s joint response to the COVID-19, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh, as Chairman of the ASEAN Coordinating Council (ACC), has suggested organizing an extraordinary meeting of the ACC and coordinating with China to hold a special ASEAN-China Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on the occasion of the forthcoming 5th Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Vientiane to discuss cooperation in combating the epidemic.