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AIPA and ASEAN parliaments consolidate bloc strengths: Vietnam President
Minh Vu 13:16, 2021/08/23
The regional legislative event is expected to support ASEAN member states to accelerate digital integration across the region.

The ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) and member parliaments support and drive regional countries forward in each development stage, Vietnamese President Nguyen Xuan Phuc said in a message sent to the 42nd AIPA’s General Assembly (AIPA-42).

Vietnamese President Nguyen Xuan Phuc. Photo: VNA 

Phuc message is remarkable at the event themed “Forging Parliamentary Cooperation in Digital Inclusion towards ASEAN Community 2025” which takes place on August 23-25.

His message becomes meaningful in the fact that 10 ASEAN member states are joining hands to fight against Covid-19 and conducting recovery plans.

“ASEAN, more than ever, needs to show the right vision, identity of solidarity, cohesion, and resilience of a community to strongly overcome difficulties and move forward. The development of the ASEAN Community cannot be made possible without the role of the legislation represented by AIPA and member parliaments,” showed his message.

Phuc said the AIPA-42 topic catches up with the current requirements for substantive cooperation among the regional parliaments and their roles in promoting digital transformation and narrowing gaps in this field in order to act toward digital inclusion in the bloc.

He emphasized the importance of the legislative channel in supporting the governments and consolidating the regional strengths to fulfill the goals set for the building of the ASEAN Community 2025.

On Monday morning [August 23], the AIPA-42 opens under the chair of Brunei with different sessions focusing on connectivity gaps in internet access and affordability; network interoperability in rural and underserved areas; digitally conducive economic environments; the growth of E-Market and E-Commerce platforms in the context of pandemic and the new normal; empowering women in the post-pandemic era through digital inclusion.

This year’s event is expected to contribute to reasserting AIPA Member Parliaments’ commitment to creating an “ASEAN as a leading digital community and the bloc's economy, powered by secure and transformative digital services, technologies and ecosystem”, as envisioned in the ASEAN Digital Master Plan 2025.

It will and support ASEAN member states to accelerate digital integration through effective prioritization, coordination, and tracking across different objectives and timelines.

Chairman of the National Assembly Vuong Dinh Hue at the AIPA-42 on August 23. Photo: NA

The Vietnamese delegation includes Chairman of the National Assembly (NA) Vuong Dinh Hue, NA Standing Vice Chairman Tran Thanh Man, head of the Central Party’s Foreign Affairs, Representatives of Foreign Affairs, Information and Communications, Environment and Natural Resources, National Defense, Public Security, and Women Union together with Ambassadors and Heads of Missions of ASEAN countries in Vietnam.

Vietnam will attend the opening session, address the first General Assembly, attend the meetings of the Women Parliamentarians of AIPA (WAIPA), Economic Committee, Committee on Social Matters, Organizing Committee, the 2nd General Assembly, and the Closing Session.

Speaking at the opening session, Vietnamese NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue called on ASEAN parliaments to support the governments in promoting equal and sustainable development among member states.

AIPA plays an instrumental role in realizing digital inclusion in ASEAN through the people or grassroots with appropriate legislation and community messaging that promote awareness of the value of digital services to society.

Therefore, in harmonizing regulations and standardizing the policies across ASEAN, AIPA can be a sounding board for ASEAN member states to align and assimilate strategies, policies, action plans, and roadmaps across all sectors while considering utilizing digital technology as an effective enabling tool.

AIPA, formerly the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Organization (AIPO) set up in 1977 with the motto “One Vision, One Identity, One Community”, has reached a consensus to transform the organization into a more effective and closely integrated institution.

Vietnam became an AIPA member in 1995 and it hosted the 41st AIPA General Assembly in 2020 via virtual conferences.

 The Vietnamese delegation includes ASEAN ambassadors in Hanoi. Photo: NA
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