The second Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) Summit, hosted by Thailand, concluded successfully on 10 October 2016. Thailand has offered to take the lead in promoting inclusive and sustainable development in ACD.
The promotion of inclusive and sustainable development is among the six pillars of cooperation among ACD members. The five other pillars include connectivity; science, technology, and innovation; education and human resource development; food, energy, and water security; and culture and tourism.
In taking the lead in the promotion of the inclusive growth and sustainable development pillar, Thailand will share its experience in implementing the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy, initiated by His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. This philosophy stresses balance in the use of economic, social, environmental, and cultural capital.
Speaking at a press conference on the results of the summit, Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha cited the gathering of ACD leaders in Bangkok as a new chapter of ACD, after its establishment in 2002. ACD leaders agreed to set clear directions for building an Asian community in the future.
On this occasion, they signed three outcome documents, which include (1) Bangkok Declaration; (2) ACD Vision for Asia Cooperation 2030; and (3) ACD Statement on Reigniting Growth through Partnerships for Connectivity.
The Prime Minister said that around 60 percent of the world population lives in Asia and that Asia represents one third of the world’s economy. He stressed the need for ACD members to step up cooperation in mobilizing their potential and strengths to improve the living conditions of people in the Asian region, as well as stabilizing the world community.
He urged the various countries taking the lead in the six pillars of ACD cooperation to set up working groups and set guidelines for cooperation in each pillar. With its favorable geographical location in terms of connectivity, Thailand is ready to serve as a bridge linking various regions in Asia, especially West Asia and East Asia.
The Prime Minister pointed out that Thailand is well aware of the importance of pushing for pan-Asia connectivity and promoting infrastructure connectivity, as well as rules and regulations. These would serve as foundations for inclusive and sustainable growth in Asia. Thailand is also ready to cooperate with ACD members, under its "Thailand + 1” policy, in order to achieve the goal of sustainable development.
The Prime Minister emphasized the important role of the private sector in bringing about economic stability in Asia. Thailand hosted the first ACD Connect Business Forum on 9 October 2016 in Bangkok. The forum provided an opportunity for Asia’s brightest entrepreneurial minds to exchange ideas and propose actions that would propel Asia toward a prosperous future.