Cuba is honored to be able to count on the friendship of each of the ten ASEAN member countries.
- Statement by Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba, at the signing ceremony of the Instrument of Accession to the ASEAN’s Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC). November 10, 2020.
H.E. Mr. Pham Binh Minh, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, a country that holds the Presidency of ASEAN;
It is a source of deep satisfaction to attend the signing ceremony of the instrument of accession to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation of the Association of South East Asian Nations whose purposes and principles we fully endorse. We recognize the work of Vietnam as President of ASEAN, where it played an active role in the coordination of a regional response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
I reiterate our deepest condolences and solidarity to the governments and peoples of Cambodia, the Philippines, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam for the lamentable loss of human lives and material damages caused by the recent weather events, which show the need to continue sharing the best experiences in coping with natural disasters.
We take pride in being the first Caribbean country to adhere to the Amity and Cooperation Treaty, for which we are grateful to all ASEAN members, with whom we share values, concert positions and cooperate in international bodies based on the defense of multilateralism and the purposes and principles of the UN Charter.
The signing of this instrument of accession takes place in an international context that shows the extraordinary value of solidarity and cooperation to confront global challenges, among them, the combat of COVID-19. We are encouraged by the interest in expanding the areas of cooperation with ASEAN, with emphasis in sectors such as biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and the export of professional services, as well as the incorporation of others like the provision of medical services, the teaching of Spanish language, culture, sports and the strategies to address climate change.
For the moment, we could consider, for example, the possibility to create a joint center for the research and development of biotech products in one of the technological parks that exist in this community; as well as cooperate in the conduction of multinational phase III clinical trials and create productive alliances for scaling up and manufacturing the candidate vaccines developed by Cuba against SARS-CoV-2.
I will conclude by expressing appreciation for the unswerving support of ASEAN and its member countries in the struggle of the Cuban people against the tightened economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the government of the United States. Cuba is honored to be able to count on the friendship of each of the ten ASEAN member countries and reaffirms its willingness to continue strengthening our relations in several areas.
Thank you, very much.