|The ASEAN+3 social welfare ministers pose for group photos at the 4th ASEAN+3 Ministerial Meeting on Social Welfare and Development in Siem Reap, Cambodia, Sept. 7, 2013. The ASEAN+3 social welfare ministers met here on Saturday to seek possibilities to broaden cooperation in social welfare for the benefits of the people in their respective countries. (Xinhua/Sovannara)|
SIEM REAP, Cambodia, Sept. 7 -- The ASEAN Plus Three Social Welfare Ministers on Saturday agreed to strengthen cooperation in order to promote social development for the people in their respective countries, Cambodian Minister of Social Affairs Ith Samheng said.
"We agreed to strengthen the ASEAN Plus Three collaboration in social welfare and development through projects and activities in order to provide opportunities to learn from each other's achievements, good practices, and lessons," he told a press conference after the 4th ASEAN+3 (China, Japan and South Korea) Ministerial Meeting on Social Welfare and Development.
"The ASEAN ministers also recognized the valuable and continuing support of the Plus Three countries in the joint efforts to strengthen services for vulnerable groups towards promoting a caring society," he added.
According to a joint statement after the meeting, the ministers commended the efforts of China in implementing social welfare and development policies and programs for vulnerable groups in the country.
They also appreciated China's initiatives on the strengthening of its substantial cooperation with the ASEAN Plus Three countries through its support to the comparative studies on social welfare policies among the ASEAN+3 countries and plan to convene a High- Level Forum on Social Services for the Elderly in 2014.
The ministers admired the continuing commitment of Japan to convene the annual ASEAN and Japan High Level Officials Meeting on Caring Societies as an effective venue for information sharing, capacity enhancement, and building partnerships amongst the social welfare, health and labor sectors.
They acknowledged the initiative of South Korea to achieve welfare for all citizens especially in promoting community-based services for older people to ensure that they are adequately cared for, the statement said.
ASEAN+3 Social Welfare Ministers meeting is held once in every three years. According to the joint statement, the 5th ASEAN+3 Ministerial Meeting on Social Welfare and Development will be held in Indonesia in 2016.
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.