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H.E. Aladdin D. Rillo

Deputy Secretary-General of ASEAN for ASEAN Economic Community

On behalf of the ASEAN Secretariat, I would like to extend my warm congratulations on the establishment of the Dialogue for Innovative and Sustainable Growth (DISG), which essentially aims to complement the ASEAN-Japan Economic Resilience Action Plan that was adopted by Economic Ministers of the ASEAN Member States and Japan in July this year.

The COVID-19 global pandemic is an unprecedented challenge that no one expected to happen. The devastation that the pandemic has caused the global economy was a wake- up call for countries around the world to assess their “old” way of doing things and explore not only how they can quickly recover from the crisis but also work toward achieving stronger and more resilient economies. In the case of ASEAN and Japan, both sides have committed to take collective actions to mitigate the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic by, among others, ensuring that markets are kept open for trade and investment and that efforts are taken for a more resilient and stronger supply chain connectivity. Now more than ever, I firmly believe that the implementation of the Action Plan is important in ensuring that economic recovery will be pursued with greater inclusivity, resilience and sustainability.

The DISG provides a platform for stakeholders to get together to discuss practical ways forward to achieve the objectives set out in the ASEAN-Japan Economic Ministers’ Joint Statement on Initiatives on Economic Resilience in Response to the Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) Outbreak. I hope that the insights and recommendations arising from the dialogues, particularly on supply chain resilience, digital transformation and human capital development, would contribute to economic recovery efforts for a stronger and more resilient region.