Jakarta: Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Quoc Dung, head of the ASEAN SOM of Viet Nam, the ASEAN Chair 2020, chaired the fourth meeting of the ASEAN Coordinating Council (ACC) Working Group on Public Health Emergencies (ACCWG-PHE) on Wednesday via a video conference.
At the meeting, ASEAN officials reviewed regional cooperation in response to the pandemic, especially realising the grouping’s major initiatives.
The ACCWG-PHE agreed to adopt the amended concept document on the ASEAN Covid-19 response fund. The concept document on regional reserve of medical supplies was also adopted at the meeting. The two documents will be submitted to the ASEAN Coordinating Council before being tabled for discussion at the 37th ASEAN Summit scheduled for November.
"ASEAN agreed to form its regional reserve of medical supplies and continue to discuss the extension of the reserve to the ASEAN+3 mechanism," stated Vietnam's National ASEAN 2020 Secretariat in a press release on Wednesday.
Regarding a proposal to set up ASEAN Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) Network for Public Health and new communicable diseases, ASEAN nations urged the Senior Officials' Meeting on Health Development (SOMHD) to further work with relevant agencies to officially announce the launch of the centre at the 23rd ASEAN-Japan Summit slated for November.
The ASEAN consented to issue ASEAN leaders’ statement on the regional travel corridor framework at the upcoming Summit.
Speaking at the meeting as ACCWG-PHE Chair, Deputy Minister Dung spoke highly the working group’s role in coordinating joint efforts of ASEAN in tackling covid-19 over the recent past.
As the 37th ASEAN Summit draws near, he called on relevant units of the grouping to continue close and effective cooperation in an attempt to complete ASEAN’s main initiatives on covid-19 on schedule.