InfoQuest, (Sept. 06, 2019) -- The 51st ASEAN Economic Ministers' Meeting (AEM) was held in Bangkok, Thailand. The economy ministers from Thailand and other ASEAN member states attended the opening ceremony. General Prayut Chan-o-cha, prime minister and minister of defence of Thailand delivered a speech and said that ASEAN must move toward the future, follow the pace of the development of modern technologies, and work hand in hand to promote inter-regional connectivity as technological transformation was changing constantly.
The minister believes that after the meeting, more benefits could be created for the ASEAN people as ASEAN is expected to achieve long-term and sustainable development, get prepared for the future, enhance connectivity in all sectors, promote the development of the economic community and strengthen relations among member states.
"Now the top priority is how to handle the trade wars, and all the ASEAN member states must unite and overcome through struggle by increasing the trade value between countries, especially the border trade value; and gearing up to cope with technological and digital changes" .
In the meantime, the minister hopes that the countries will give due attention to the treatment of marine litters, create and develop smart cities, and upgrade labor force skills so that they could better cope with industrial transformation and upgrading as well as work with robots.
As the minister has stated, Thailand, under the chairmship of ASEAN, is committed to the building of the ASEAN Community and bringing more benefits to the ASEAN people.
Before the opening ceremony of the AEM meeting, the minister met with several heads of international organizations, including the ASEAN Economic Minister, President of the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) Council, President of the ASEAN Investment Area (AIA) Council as well as ASEAN Secretary General. According to the minister, ASEAN member states must strengthen cooperation against trade wars, rely on ASEAN's own strength to increase the trade value between each other, promote the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP) to be reached within this year, promote the development of border trade, increase the value of agricultural products, and cope with the fourth industrial revolution through cooperation. Meanwhile, they should also build smart cities by using digital technologies, cooperate in the treatment of marine litters, support the development of small and medium-sized enterprises and upgrade labor force skills.
Source: InfoQuest, by Tanit Tongnok / Nisarat / Rachada, translated by Xinhua Silk Road
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