ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) Senior Officials’ Meeting held
New Delhi, Secretary (East) in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Riva Ganguly Das participated in the ASEAN Regional Forum Senior Officials’ Meeting (ARF SOM) virtually on June 29 and emphasised the need to work together based on convergences between the ASEAN Outlook for the Indo-Pacific (AOIP), India’s Indo-Pacific Oceans’ Initiative (IPOI) and Indo-Pacific policies announced by several ARF countries.
The meeting saw participation of the 27 ARF members.
The Senior Officers Meeting reviewed ARF activities and exchanges over the past year and deliberated on the future plans and efforts under the ARF. Senior Officials exchanged views on the regional and international issues including the COVID-19 pandemic, terrorism, cyber security, developments in the South China Sea, Myanmar and Korean Peninsula.
The Secretary (East) in her remarks expressed India’s appreciation for ASEAN-led architecture and the chairmanship of Brunei Darussalam for advancing peace, security, and cooperation in the region. Ms. Das highlighted the growing traditional and non-traditional threats posing a challenge to the maritime security environment, and shared India’s perspectives on addressing the threat posed by terrorism and the challenges of cyber security.
In June 2021, India co-chaired an ARF workshop on ‘United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea’ (UNCLOS) and would co-chair an Inter-Sessional Meeting on Maritime Security, workshops on “Law of the Sea and Fisheries”, and “International Ship and Port facility Security Code” in the upcoming year.