Jakarta: Indonesian Defence Minister Prabowo Subianto on Tuesday joined the 12th ASEAN-China Defence Ministers Informal Meeting, held virtually to discuss the progress in defense cooperation between both sides in the past 30 years.
Brunei Darussalam’s Second Minister of Defence, the Honorable Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Retired) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Haji Mohd Yussof, in his capacity as chief of ADMM, opened the meeting.
Subianto lauded the informal meeting, which marked 30 years of ASEAN-China relations.
He said ASEAN-China cooperation, which has lasted for three decades now, has continued to develop in various fields, including defence.
"The ASEAN-China strategic think-tank forum, the ASEAN-China young military officers exchange, and the ASEAN-China maritime exercise are among the several areas of cooperation which have benefited the steps for trust and capacity building between ASEAN and China,” Subianto said on the official website of the Defence Ministry (kemhan.go.id).
ASEAN-China relations play an important role in the region, therefore, ASEAN and China must continue to maintain and improve cooperation for the security and prosperity of the region, he said.
According to Subianto, dialog and consultation based on common confidence and trust can resolve all problems in the region, including the South China Sea issue. ASEAN and China are expected to immediately continue effective and substantive negotiations on the Code of the Conduct in the South China Sea, he added.
Indonesia also encourages all sides to comply with the Declaration of Conduct (DoC), including exercising self-restraint, he said.
If the South China Sea is well-managed, it will strengthen an equal, mutually beneficial partnership, which is badly needed to create global peace and stability, he said.
Indonesia also lauds China's support for the the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP) agreed upon by ASEAN leaders, he added.
The meeting brought together defense ministers from ASEAN member states and their Chinese counterpart, General Wei Fenghe.
The regional grouping's member countries comprise Indonesia, Brunei, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam.