Nov 8, 2012

Thailand - Thai PM urges Asia, Europe to fight common dangers together

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The Asia-Europe Meeting summit wrapped up yesterday in Vientiane highlighting the need for more cooperation between the two regions on economic and financial matters and recognising risks for the future.

The chairman's statement - adopted after two-day meeting - encouraged countries from the two continents to share experiences in implementing regional crisis management arrangements, including the European Stability Mechanism, the Eurozone’s permanent rescue fund.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said countries in Asia and Europe would face many transborder problems such as human trafficking and transborder crime, while benefiting from regional connectivity.

Thailand has stepped up measures to prevent problems of increased population, particularly among vulnerable groups - giving them access to public health, education, capital and technology to uplift their living standards and well-being, she said.

Refugees and migration issues would be also included in the schemes in order to protect possible victims of human traffickers, she said.

Asean would learn from Europe's experience in managing risk in a region without borders, as the ten-member regional group now approaches becoming a community by 2015, she said.

Thailand had joined hands with other members of Asean to map out an action plan to cope with trafficking issues, Yingluck said.

The two regions, Asia and Europe, should work to forge more cooperation in tackling trans-border crimes and trafficking.

Yingluck proposed a post-2015 development agenda, with trained people at the centre for sustainable development. Development after 2015, when Asean becomes a community, must aim to reduce risk and be ready to handle natural disasters which could seriously disrupt the food chain and food security, she said.

Yingluck emphasised the role of women in sustainable development. Thailand has launched a Women's Development Fund and hopes for international support for her "Every Woman, Every Child" project to uplift mothers and children.

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