Business / Economy

Asian-African summit to focus on pragmatic economic, trade cooperation

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-04-21 15:38

JAKARTA - Delegates from 109 Asian and African countries will discuss new opportunity on pragmatic economic and trade cooperation while commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Bandung conference.

The Asian-African summit and a series of events under the theme "Strengthening South-South Cooperation to Promote World Peace and Prosperity" will be held in Jakarta and Bandung on April 22 to 24.

The forum is aimed to bridge Asian and African nations to stronger partnership and to share experience in enhancing both regions' economic development, according to analysts here.

It's also an opportunity to discuss solutions to overcome common challenges through strengthening South-South cooperation.

Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi told the ministerial meeting ahead of the 60th anniversary of the Asian-African Conference (AAC), also known as Bandung Conference, that a Bandung Message is expected to be released during the commemoration later this week.

"To implement it (the Bangdung Message), we will have the NAASP (the New Asian-African Strategic Partnership). To support the NAASP, we have the South-South cooperation," said the minister.

The New Asian-African Strategic Partnership (NAASP) is not a new concept, which was launched at the commemoration of the golden jubilee of the Asian-African conference in 2005.

The NAASP serves as the blueprint to bolster pragmatic collaboration of two continents in the future. As a venture to build a bridge between Asian and African, NAASP focuses its cooperation on the three broad pillars of partnership namely political solidarity, economic cooperation and socio-cultural.

As agreed by the leaders on the Summit 2005, NAASP follow up mechanism will be consisted of Summit back to back with business Summit for every four years, Ministerial Meeting for every two years and Ministerial Technical Meeting when it deems necessary.

However, the Summit has always been delayed, and related cooperation have not been implemented due to lack of substantial mechanism.

Some officials said Asian and African countries should seize the opportunity of the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of Bandung conference to push forward the NAASP institutionalization, promote pragmatic cooperation between the two continents, and invigorate the Bandung spirit.

In 1955, 29 Asian and African countries agreed in Bandung on the principles to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all nations and to promote Asian-African economic and cultural cooperation.

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