Pacific Alliance and ASEAN adopt 2021-2025 Work Plan

November 24, 2021 – In order to continue strengthening the ties of friendship and cooperation between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the Pacific Alliance (PA), the annual meeting between the Permanent Representatives Committee and the National Coordinators of both regional blocs was held on Wednesday. At this meeting, the 2021-2025 Work Plan was adopted, which is focused on the following areas: economic cooperation; in education and culture; science, technology and innovation, as well as smart cities and connectivity; environment and sustainable development; and post-pandemic recovery.

“We are sure that it will contribute to the rapprochement between our regions, generating spaces for interaction and cooperation, exchange of experiences and best practices that will strengthen the capacities of our blocs and each of our countries,” said Luis Felipe Quintero, Colombia’s Chief Negotiator for the Pacific Alliance and National Coordinator (E).

Among the initiatives contemplated in terms of economic cooperation are the organization of investment and trade activities between member countries; the promotion of cooperation in areas such as the digital economy, e-commerce, cybersecurity and the development of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, the economic empowerment of women and youth employability.

In the area of education and culture, both mechanisms agreed to promote cooperation and the exchange of experiences and knowledge in e-learning, technical and vocational education and training, people-to-people contact (mainly in relation to the revival of sustainable tourism) and cultural exchanges.

In relation to science, technology and innovation, they will also work on the exchange of experiences and best practices in digital economy material such as the PA Regional Digital Market Roadmap and the ASEAN Digital Masterplan, the promotion of women’s participation in these areas, as well as the exploration of opportunities in connectivity and smart cities.

On a joint work on environment, issues such as the fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals, plastic waste management, the fight against deforestation, the promotion of circular economy, among others, are part of the Work Plan. “Environmental transformation is one of the issues that will not only protect our planet, but also stimulate our economies and promote their growth,” added Luis Felipe Quintero.

Faced with the post-pandemic recovery, there are two main bets: a recovery with a gender focus and the promotion of the exchange of information on prevention and response measures to COVID-19.

“In these challenging times, the Pacific Alliance and ASEAN need each other to fight the pandemic, boost trade and the economy, address climate change, and reinforce our common goals on issues such as digital transformation and gender equity,” concluded Luis Felipe Quintero.

Read the 2021-2025 Work Plan in English here.