China hosts “ASEAN foreign ministers meeting”

What is the news?

China is hosting ASEAN foreign ministers meeting this year. This year (2021) also marks the 30th anniversary of the dialogue relations between China and the 10-member ASEAN countries. Association of Southeast Asian Nations

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Key Focus of the ASEAN foreign ministers meeting:

The meeting will focus on

  • Combating COVID-19
  • Promoting economic recovery
  • Discussing the proposal of vaccine passport connecting China and ASEAN countries
Significance of this ASEAN foreign ministers meeting:
  • This meeting comes in the backdrop of China criticizing the Quad (India, Australia, Japan and the United States grouping) during recent visits to Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
  • China’s Defence Minister has called on both countries to reject “military alliances” — a term that China is using to describe the Quad but a label that the Quad group rejects.

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China and ASEAN Cooperation:
  • China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations(ASEAN) countries established a strategic partnership in 2005.
  • China-ASEAN free trade zone was formally established in the year 2010.
  • China and ASEAN countries are a part of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade deal.
  • China has been ASEAN’s largest trade partner for 12 consecutive years. On the other hand, ASEAN became China’s largest trade partner in 2020.
  • China has pledged to deliver 100 million doses of the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine to ASEAN nations. Apart from that, China will also provide other pandemic-fighting materials and technical help to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic in ASEAN Countries.

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About ASEAN:
  • ASEAN is a regional grouping that was established in 1967 with the signing of the Bangkok Declaration.
  • Members: Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, The Philippines, Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, Brunei, and Laos.
  • Headquarters: Jakarta, Indonesia.

Source: The Hindu

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