VIENTIANE, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) -- China has vowed to form a closer community of shared future with Southeast Asian nations while commemorating the 25th anniversary of their dialogue relationship.
While addressing the 19th summit between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in the capital city of Laos, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang put forward a five-point proposal to further enhance China-ASEAN relations:
First, to better coordinate development strategies between the two sides, deepen cooperation in all areas within the 2+7 Cooperation Framework and in accordance with the third action plan for their strategic partnership, Li said.
Second, to establish a new platform for political and security cooperation.
China is willing to discuss to sign a treaty of good-neighborly friendship and cooperation as early as possible, so as to provide legal protection for a long-term friendship, Li said, adding that China supports ASEAN's efforts to establish a nuclear weapon-free zone in Southeast Asia.
The two sides should also have regular unofficial meetings between defense ministers to promote defense cooperation and promote a more substantial progress in the ministerial dialogue mechanism on law enforcement and security, he said.
Third, to further enhance and facilitate free trade and investment, jointly promote the construction of the Belt and Road Initiative and interconnectivity, and deepen industrial cooperation.
Fourth, to make cultural and people-to-people exchanges a third pillar for China-ASEAN cooperation, further enhance cooperation in this regard with education and tourism as two priority areas, said Li.
China hopes the total number of exchange students could reach 300,000 in 2025 through a student exchange plan, he added.
Fifth, to jointly enhance regional cooperation, Li said, noting that the special fund for Lancang-Mekong Cooperation, which involves China, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar, has been launched to support cooperation projects among sub-regional countries.
The Chinese premier also said that China stands ready to work with ASEAN to promote the comprehensive and in-depth development of their bilateral relations, and to make greater contribution to the lasting peace and common prosperity of the region and the world. Enditem