Marcos wants ASEAN and Australia to continue tackling transnational crime – Manila Bulletin

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PHNOM PENH, Cambodia—President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Saturday called for continued cooperation in the fight against transnational crime, expressing his gratitude for Australia’s support for the country’s anti-trafficking work plan.

Marcos also expressed his commitment to fighting other crimes with the aim of achieving regional peace and security.

He said the assurance from the Quad, a four-member security dialogue that includes Australia, of unwavering support for the unity and centrality of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations East (ASEAN) is a welcome statement.

“This is consistent with the idea that such mini-lateral mechanisms should complement the ASEAN-centric regional security architecture,” Marcos said.

At the ASEAN-Australia summit here, Marcos said an anti-trafficking partnership with Australia, which is based on the ASEAN Convention on Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, will strengthen responses regional against crime.

The cooperation “will also keep us in step with the ever-evolving schemes of transnational criminals and traffickers”, he said.

In terms of the economy, Marcos called for Australia’s continued collaboration with the ASEAN Council for Technical and Vocational Training (TVET) to improve and strengthen the TVET systems and programs of ASEAN member states.

With the Philippines being the first chair of the ASEAN TVET Council from 2020 to 2022, Marcos said the country expects an increase in training and scholarships among specialists and students.

This will be in preparation for the expected conclusion of the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Area upgrade, which will further encourage trade in services, among other updates in today’s digital age. today.

In the area of ​​climate change mitigation, Marcos called on Australia to step up its support for the ASEAN Center for Biodiversity (ACB), ASEAN’s lead institution for conservation and promotion of biodiversity.

In terms of food security, Marcos said the country welcomes engagement with Australia on the implementation of the ASEAN Strategic Plan for Cooperation in Food, Agriculture and Tourism. forestry for 2016-2025.

“Food resilience and food self-sufficiency are two of our most fundamental priorities in the Philippines. We must protect the region and our countries from shocks on the global food value chain, as well as from the adverse effects of climate change,” he said.

Meanwhile, in a brief conversation with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, Marcos said that all the concepts that “we started discussing when we were in New York, we continue to develop within our government.” .

“So when the time comes, this concept that you have presented to us on economic stability, is something … that ASEAN, the Philippines, we will continue to develop these ideas and concepts further,” he said.

The Japanese leader said he was looking forward to receiving President Marcos in Japan. No date has yet been set for the state visit.

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