National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan (R) receives the token of the AIPA 41 Chairmanship from Speaker of the House of Representatives of Thailand Chuan Leekpai, Chair of AIPA 40, on August 29, 2019 (Photo: VNA)
- With the support
of other members of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA), Vietnam, as the
AIPA Chair, will make every effort to successfully organise activities within
AIPA Year 2020 as well as the upcoming 41st General Assembly of AIPA
(AIPA 41), the top Vietnamese legislator has said.
According to Chairwoman of the National
Assembly (NA) Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, the success of AIPA Year and AIPA 41 will
contribute pragmatically to advancing the AIPA-ASEAN partnership and enhancing
coordination in action between the legislative and executive channels, thus pushing
ahead with the building of an ASEAN Community of peace, stability, safety,
prosperity, and happiness.
In an article published prior to AIPA 41,
slated for September 8-9, Ngan highlighted the significance of the year 2020, with
Vietnam simultaneously serving as a non-permanent member of the UN Security
Council (UNSC), the ASEAN Chair, and the AIPA Chair.
“This allows Vietnam to continue affirming
its role, position, and prestige in the international arena,” she said. It also
requires the country to make more contributions to maintaining peace, stability,
and sustainable development in the region and the world at large.
Themed “Parliamentary Diplomacy for a
Cohesive and Responsive ASEAN Community”, AIPA 41 will be held as a
teleconference for the first time.
AIPA 41 and activities in the AIPA Year
have demonstrated the Vietnamese legislature’s responsibility and practical contributions
to AIPA, while helping to strengthen solidarity and lead joint efforts so that
AIPA can assist ASEAN in building the ASEAN Community, Ngan emphasised.
Central tasks now lie in overcoming the adverse
impact of COVID-19, maintaining economic development, and ensuring social
welfare for all, she said.
Recalling the 43-year history of AIPA,
Ngan said it has become an open and useful forum where regional parliaments and
parliamentarians can exchange views and candidly discuss issues of shared
The enhanced mutual understanding, respect,
and trust have helped build a firm foundation for regional cooperation, she
AIPA attaches great importance to
intensifying its collaboration with partners outside the ASEAN, she went on, saying
that since 1979, the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Organisation (AIPO - the predecessor of AIPA) has established dialogue mechanisms with the
parliaments of Australia, Japan, and the Republic of Korea (RoK).
AIPA has now set up annual dialogue mechanisms with 12 observer member parliaments
from Australia, Belarus, Canada, China, the EU, India, Japan, Papua New Guinea,
New Zealand, the RoK, Russia, and Timor-Leste.
Regarding Vietnam’s AIPA membership over the last 25 years, Ngan said
the country has proven itself to be an active, proactive, and responsible
member, adding that it has fully participated in activities within AIPA while
contributing many result-oriented ideas and initiatives in order to revamp the
organisation and the operations and agenda of AIPO/AIPA, and promoting the role
of AIPO/AIPA as well as its connectivity with ASEAN in addressing regional
In security and politics, the Vietnamese legislature has upheld the significance
of solidarity among regional countries and affirmed the key principles in
building the ASEAN Community for peace, stability, and prosperity on the basis
of solidarity, unity, observance of international law, and respect for the legitimate
interests of each other, in harmony with the grouping’s interests.
In the economic arena, Vietnam has called on AIPA member parliaments to
increase domestic legal reviews in an effort to remove trade and investment
barriers and ensure transparent and effective mechanisms, for a dynamic and
As for social affairs, Ngan said, Vietnam has contributed to and
co-sponsored resolutions on gender equality, women’s empowerment, and support for
people with disabilities, for sustainable environment in AIPA.
The country has also proposed many initiatives to promote the role of
women in general and female parliamentarians in particular.
Notably, the NA has been one of the most active members in boosting the
AIPA-ASEAN relationship, with marked initiatives.
Ngan said AIPA 41 takes place in the context of ASEAN working hard
towards the goal of cohesion and to affirm its centrality in maintaining peace,
stability, and development in Southeast Asia.
ASEAN countries are also making efforts to contain the pandemic and materialise
policy packages in order to enhance post-pandemic economic recovery, maintain
commitments to opening trade and investment, connect supply chains, ensure food
security, prevent economic downturn, and ensure social welfare.
At the same time, countries are grappling with a host of difficulties
and challenges, including the adverse impact of COVID-19, Ngan said, pointing
to the rapid and unexpected changes in the global situation, and policy adjustments
and relations among powers tending to influence peace, security, cooperation,
and development in the region.
Hot spots such as the East Sea and new political developments in certain
countries will also impact ASEAN’s centrality in maintaining peace and
stability in the region, she added.
Given this, Vietnam, in its capacity as the AIPA Chair, will do its
best to ensure the success of the activities in AIPA Year and AIPA 41, Ngan