ABU DHABI - The UAE participated in the 55th Foreign Ministers Meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which is taking place in the Kingdom of Cambodia from 30th July to 6th August 2022.

As part of the meeting’s key agenda items, the UAE signed ASEAN’s Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC).

The UAE was represented at the signing ceremony by Dr. Abdulnasser Alshaali, Assistant Minister for Economic and Trade Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC).

In his remarks, Alshaali underscored the shared values and deep-rooted relations between the UAE and ASEAN member states. He added, "The signing of the TAC reflects the UAE's keenness to strengthen and advance economic relations with ASEAN countries."

He highlighted global challenges that demonstrate the increased importance of multilateral cooperation, especially within regional and international organisations such as ASEAN. He also noted that the signing of the TAC represents the final step in the UAE’s application to join ASEAN as a Sectoral Dialogue Partner (SDP).

Alshaali said, "As the UAE completes the final step in the process of obtaining SDP status, it is essential to underline the mutual benefits that this partnership will bring notably, the impetus it will provide to our joint efforts to address pressing issues at the regional and global levels, including climate change, food and energy security, and the sustainability of the healthcare sector."

He highlighted the tangible contributions of the UAE’s potential partnership with ASEAN and its member states, particularly in the fields of trade, investment, tourism, digital transformation, and healthcare.

The UAE's efforts to sign the TAC and join ASEAN as an SDP are part of the broader strategy of MoFAIC and the UAE’s Principles of the 50 framework, with an emphasis on forging sustainable and effective partnerships with countries and multilateral organisations.

The Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia is a peace treaty among Southeast Asian countries established by founding members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, an economic organisation of 10 Member States: Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Cambodia, Myanmar, Philippines, Vietnam, and Laos.