The summit participants discussed the deepening of cooperation in trade, investment and humanitarian spheres, the strengthening of ties between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, as well as current international and regional issues.
After the plenary session, the participants adopted a Joint Statement of the 3rd Russian Federation-ASEAN summit on strategic partnership and the statement of the Russian Federation and ASEAN on cooperation in ensuring the security of information and communication technologies and their safe use.
The sides signed a memorandum of understanding between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and the Eurasian Economic Commission on economic cooperation. This was done in the presence of heads of national delegations taking part in the summit.
ASEAN comprises 10 Southeast Asian countries, including Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Russia became a dialogue partner in July 1996.
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Speeches at the plenary session of the Russia-Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit
Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Hsien Loong: Your Majesty, excellencies. On behalf of all of the ASEAN leaders, may I welcome President Vladimir Putin to Singapore. And we are very honoured that you can join us at this 3rd ASEAN-Russia summit.
The last time ASEAN and Russia’s leaders met was in 2016 in Sochi, to commemorate the 20th anniversary of ASEAN-Russia dialogue relations. I am very happy that since then we have made much progress in our partnership. ASEAN and Russia work together in a broad range of areas, from political security issues to economic, to social and cultural issues. Russia also participates actively in ASEAN-led fora like the ASEAN Regional Forum, the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting-Plus the East Asia Summit.
Today’s summit is timely because it gives both sides the opportunity to reaffirm our commitment, to further strengthen ASEAN-Russia ties. The two ASEAN and Russian leaders will issue a joint statement as well as a statement on cooperation in the field of security and in the use of information and communication technologies. We will also witness a signing of an MoU on economic cooperation. And these deliverables highlight the breadth and scope of the ASEAN-Russia relationship.
Singapore supports upgrading the ASEAN-Russia relationship to a strategic partnership. I am confident that this strategic partnership will enhance cooperation in areas which are of interest to both sides. And I look forward to our discussion with President Putin and our fellow ASEAN leaders on how we can further strengthen this dialogue partnership.
Now I invite President Putin to say a few words.
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Chairman, Colleagues,
First of all, I would like to thank the Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, Mr Lee Hsien Loong, for the initiative to host the Russia-ASEAN summit.
Russia pays great attention to the development of relations with ASEAN based on mutual respect and consideration for each other’s interests.
At the May 2016 Sochi summit, which Mr Prime Minister just mentioned, we adopted a declaration and an action plan aimed at taking cooperation between Russia and ASEAN to the strategic partnership level.
Over the past two years, we have accomplished a lot together. Political dialogue intensified; Russia’s permanent mission to ASEAN was established in Jakarta last year. We coordinate our approaches to key issues on the Asia-Pacific agenda, to the challenges and threats to regional stability, and enhance joint efforts to fight terrorism, drug trafficking and organised crime.
Our foreign ministers hold annual meetings. The Russian Defence Minister takes part in the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ meetings, and the Interior Minister attends the ASEAN Association of Chiefs of Police (ASEANAPOL) conferences. Contacts have also been established between Russian lawmakers and the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly.
Economic relations are evolving steadily. In 2017, Russia’s trade with ASEAN increased by 35 percent. Mutual accumulated investment exceeds $25 billion.
Our joint business cooperation roadmap containing about 60 joint projects in industry and high technology is being successfully implemented. There are cooperation programmes in energy and agriculture. The Russia-ASEAN Business Council is active too.
It would be useful to continue the work of the Russian delegation to the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit, which ended in Singapore yesterday.
In turn, business leaders from ASEAN countries are always widely represented at the St Petersburg and Eastern Economic forums in Russia. Taking this opportunity, I would like to invite ASEAN officials and business representatives to visit Russia to attend the next meetings of these forums in 2019.
We consider it important to establish regular dialogue between ASEAN and the Eurasian Economic Union. The signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Association and the Eurasian Economic Commission is a step in this direction.
We are grateful to our ASEAN partners for supporting the Russian initiative to pass a joint statement on information security aiming to more effectively combat cybercrime and to chart common approaches regarding the behaviour of states in the global information space.
Russia will join ASEAN plans to establish a chain of smart cities. Moscow, the Russian capital, leads the way in introducing urban digital technology. Moscow already proactively cooperates with Singapore on a bilateral basis. We hope that the region of this cooperation will expand on a reciprocal basis.
It goes without saying that close coordination in emergency response to natural disasters and industrial accidents is in high demand. We have finished working on a cooperation memorandum for preventing emergency situations and conducting clean-up operations. We hope that it will be possible to sign this document soon.
We are ready to continue helping ASEAN states in their efforts to check the spread of infectious diseases. We suggest tapping the potential of various programmes to raise the qualification of medical personnel at a biological safety and security centre that has opened in Vladivostok earlier this year. We could also consider holding joint exercises and practicing rapid response measures to combat dangerous infectious diseases.
In addition, I would like to note the sustained development of cultural and humanitarian ties between Russia and the ASEAN states.
Two weeks ago, Myanmar hosted the first meeting of the working group on education. We are implementing an action plan in the area of science, technology and innovation until 2025. A network of research centres of leading Russian and ASEAN universities has been operating since April.
It would be useful to organise educational and university forums on a regular basis. Russia successfully hosted such events in 2016 and 2017.
The holding of Russia-ASEAN youth summits helps strengthen ties between young people of our countries. The Republic of the Philippines is to host the next summit in 2019.
I have only set out the most important aspects of Russia-ASEAN cooperation, as well as key agreements and documents that were drafted ahead of the summit.
I am confident that wide-ranging opportunities and horizons are opening up for our expanded cooperation.
I am counting on an open and interested exchange of opinions.