APPF-26: Transmitting an image of renovated Vietnamese National Assembly

Sunday, 2018-01-07 13:43:30
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Standing NA Vice Chairwoman Tong Thi Phong chairs the third meeting of the APPF-26 organising board.
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NDO – The 26th Annual Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF-26) will be organised in Hanoi from January 18-21, 2018 under the theme of “Parliamentary partnership for Peace, Innovation and Sustainable Development”. The event is expected to contribute to enhancing bilateral relations between the Vietnamese National Assembly (NA) and parliaments of other countries, whilst affirming the prestige of the Vietnamese NA at regional and global inter-parliamentary forums.

* APPF-26 organising committee makes debut in Hanoi

* Foreign diplomatic agencies informed of APPF-26

* NA Chairwoman launches APPF-26 website, logo

Strengthening dialogue

The APPF was paved the way by former Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone. The forum is open for members of parliaments (MPs) and parliaments in the Asia-Pacific region, aiming to directly support the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, contributing to peace, stability and prosperity in the region.

In August 1991, the first Preparatory Meeting of the APPF was held in Singapore, with the attendance of parliamentarians from nine countries (Australia, Canada, Indonesia, Japan, New Zealand, the Philippines, the Republic of Korea, Singapore and the United States).

The second Preparatory Meeting was held in Canberra, Australia from December 10-11, 1991, gathering 37 parliamentarians from Australia, Brunei, who had an observer status, Canada, Indonesia Japan, Mexico, the Federated States of Micronesia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, Thailand and the US.

At the Inaugural Meeting in 1993 in Tokyo (Japan), the APPF was formally established with the adoption of the Tokyo Declaration. The APPF-2 meeting in the Philippines approved the rules of procedure for the forum. The fifth Annual Meeting in 1997 saw the APPF’s adoption of the Vancouver Declaration which outlines the vision of the Asia-Pacific region in the 21st century.

The APPF currently has 27 member parliaments, including Australia, Cambodia, Canada, Costa Rica, Chile, Colombia, China, Ecuador, Fiji, Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Laos, Malaysia, the Marshall Islands, Mexico, Micronesia, Mongolia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Thailand, the US and Vietnam.

In principle, the APPF is extended to all national parliamentarians in the Asia-Pacific region as associate members, observers or in any other appropriate status as determined by the APPF Annual Meeting.

The forum aims to strengthen dialogue on the issues of security-politics and economic, trade and cultural cooperation among parliamentarians in the region, contributing to addressing regional issues and maintaining peace, stability, sustainable development and prosperity for the region. The APPF is also a support channel for the APEC forum.

Since the first Annual Meeting of the APPF in 1993, the Asia-Pacific region has always been a dynamic engine of the global growth. Along with the development of state diplomacy, parliamentary diplomacy has also been actively promoted.

The APPF’s goal is to foster regional cohesion and cooperation towards the development of peace, freedom, democracy and prosperity; to facilitate open and inclusive cooperation in order to expand free trade and investment, sustainable development and sound environmental activities, and to pay proper attention to the issues relating to regional security and peace.

Vietnamese NA – an active member

At the hand-over ceremony of the APPF chairmanship (2017-2018 tenure) between the Parliament of Fiji and the Vietnamese NA in Ho Chi Minh City, Standing Vice Chairwoman of the Vietnamese NA, Tong Thi Phong, clearly stated that the Vietnamese parliament spoke highly of the operations and the working agenda of the APPF, contributing to promoting friendship and cooperation between regional parliaments, strengthening the dialogue and exchange mechanisms between parliamentarians and enhancing the role of parliaments in addressing the common issues of the region, thus ensuring peace, stability and sustainable development.

Since its admission to the APPF in January 1995, the Vietnamese NA has always been actively involved in the activities of the forum. Annually, the Vietnamese NA sends a delegation to attend the APPF meeting, including a number of delegations at the NA Vice Chair level, such as the delegation led by NA Deputy Chairman Uong Chu Luu at the APPF-21 in Vladivostok, Russia (January 2013), and the delegation headed by NA Vice Chairwoman Tong Thi Phong attending the APPF-20 in Japan (January 2012).

Particularly, the Vietnamese NA hosted the 13th Annual Meeting of the APPF in January 2005 in Ha Long city, Quang Ninh province. The conference attracted the participation of a large number of parliamentarians from 22 member parliaments and the observer parliament (Brunei), leaving deep impression among international friends.

At this meeting, Vietnam proposed cooperation in overcoming the earthquake and tsunami disaster, which was supported by all the participating countries. This is a timely action showing the interest and sharing of APPF member countries with disaster-stricken countries.

The APPF-14 held in Jakarta, Indonesia from January 15-20, 2006 attracted 278 delegates from 22 member and observer parliaments. A number of recommendations raised by the Vietnamese delegation were included in the Joint Communiqué and other documents of the conference, such as the proposal for increased coordination between the parliaments and the governments of Asia-Pacific countries, as well as between the APPF and the APEC, and the proposal for the expansion of relations between the APPF and other parliamentary organisations in the world, aiming to strengthen mutual understanding between the continents.

Attending the APPF-18 in Singapore from January 18-21, 2010, the Vietnamese NA delegation made significant contributions whilst discussing the issue of climate change. At this conference, a separate resolution on climate change, patronised by six countries (including Vietnam), was adopted.

Here, Vietnam also proposed an initiative on the establishment of a common cooperation for the Asia-Pacific region, including regional inter-parliamentary organisations, such as the APPF and the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA), and regional intergovernmental organisations, such as the APEC and ASEAN, aiming to respond effectively to the risks posed by climate change. This initiative was welcomed by member countries and included in the Resolution.

The APPF-19 in Mongolia on January 23-27, 2011 focused on the most pressing issues of the region and the world, requiring concerted efforts and close coordination among nations as well as parliaments to resolve. At the meeting, the Vietnamese delegation proposed two resolutions on climate change and the implementation of the “Millennium Development Goals,” which won the support from many member parliaments and were approved as the meeting’s official documents.

The Vietnamese NA hosting the APPF Annual Meeting for the second time continues to show the role and responsibility of the Vietnamese NA in the APPF, contributing to transmitting a strong message and image of a renovated, dynamic, active and responsible Vietnamese parliament.