Over the years, ASEAN and the United Nations (UN) have fostered strong cooperation on sustainable development. This is clearly reflected in our collective efforts to enhance the complementarities between the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 and the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Complementarities Initiative), which was endorsed by the ASEAN-UN Summit in 2016. Since then, Thailand, as the ASEAN Coordinator on for Sustainable Development Cooperation, and the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP), have been working closely to take forward this initiative.
Over the past years, the Complementarities Initiative has played a catalytic role in advancing sustainable development cooperation in the ASEAN region and beyond. It serves as an approach for ASEAN policy makers to both optimise efforts and resources and align ASEAN work streams towards simultaneously achieving both goals by focusing on 5 priority areas as outlined in the Complementarities Roadmap (2020-2025), namely: poverty eradication, infrastructure and connectivity, sustainable management of natural resources, sustainable consumption and production and resilience. To promote the implementation of the Roadmap, Thailand and UN ESCAP successfully organised, for six years running, the annual High-Level Brainstorming Dialogue on Enhancing Complementarities between the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 and the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. These meetings have served as a policy platform for ASEAN Member States and ASEAN’s external partners to discuss how to advance sustainable development cooperation in ASEAN.
The 7th High-Level Brainstorming Dialogue will be a platform for ASEAN Member States, UN Agencies and external partners to review the progress made on the implementation of the Complementarities Initiative. Participants will also share views on regional cooperation and coherent actions to ensure sustained progress of SDGs and acceleration of efforts for recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in the areas of energy, food, and financing to ensure ASEAN as a fulcrum of sustainable and inclusive growth. The Dialogue will also provide an opportunity for participants to discuss ways forward to update the Complementarities Initiative to align with the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP) and the ASEAN Community’s post-2025 vision.