SFA Locsin Highlights Progress in COC Negotiations, Arbitral Award, Climate Change in ASEAN-China Ministerial Meeting


Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro L. Locsin Jr. stresses the importance of peace and stability in the South China Sea at the ASEAN Post-Ministerial Conference (PMC) 10+1 Session with China held on 03 August 2021.

PASAY CITY, 07 August 2021 – Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro L. Locsin Jr. underscored at the ASEAN-China Ministerial Meeting on 03 August 2021 that disputes in the South China Sea should be resolved peacefully in accordance with international law, including the 1982 UNCLOS.  Locsin also highlighted that, as Country Coordinator of ASEAN-China dialogue relations, the Philippines had moved forward the negotiations on the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC) despite challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Secretary Locsin also called for setting aside differences given the urgency for collective action in tackling the climate change crisis and protecting the environment.  He welcomed China’s efforts in scaling up initiatives on renewable energy sources and reducing carbon emissions, and conveyed his appreciation for the latter’s continued support on ASEAN’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, especially through the provision of vaccines.

ASEAN Member States and China likewise conveyed their utmost appreciation and admiration for the Philippines’ able co-chairmanship of the COC process.

Notable progress under the Philippines’ Coordinatorship from August 2018 to August 2021 include the following: adoption of a statement on strengthening collaboration as well as national, regional, and global efforts to address the pandemic during the Special ASEAN-China Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on COVID-19 in 2020; co-chairmanship of the Special ASEAN-China Foreign Ministers’ Meeting to Commemorate the 30th Anniversary of Dialogue Relations in June 2021; the Strategic Partnership Vision 2030 issued by ASEAN and China; and the adoption of the Plan of Action to Implement the ASEAN-China Strategic Partnership for Peace and Prosperity (2021-2025) in 2020.

At the end of the Meeting, the Philippines turned over the Coordinatorship of the ASEAN-China Dialogue Relations to Myanmar. The Philippines will now assume Coordinatorship for ASEAN-European Union Dialogue Relations for 2021-2024. END