SOCA Meeting Concluded with Fruitful Outcomes

The 33rd Senior Officials Committee for the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (SOCA) Meeting was wrapped up yesterday with the endorsement of outcome documents to be adopted and noted by ASEAN Leaders.

Attendance in the virtual meeting included Deputy Secretary General of ASEAN, ASEAN Secretariat, Senior Officials Committee for ASCC (SOCA Leaders) of the 10 ASEAN Member States and Secondment Officers.

According to a press release, the Meeting reiterated support on Cambodia’s Chairmanship theme “ASEAN A.C.T: Addressing Challenges Together” and 2022 Cambodia ASCC priorities: (1) enhance ASEAN values, awareness and identity, (2) promote human resource development and women empowerment, (3) enhance health. well-being and social protection; and (4) strengthen ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community’s institutional capacity and effectiveness.

The Meeting endorsed 11 outcome documents to be adopted and 20 outcome documents to be noted by ASEAN Leaders at the coming 40th and 41st ASEAN Summits. The Meeting also discussed the progress of the ASCC Blueprint 2025, the cross-sectoral and cross pillar works and the progresses of the previous ASCC initiatives including the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework; Framework for Circular Economy for the AEC, Hanoi Declaration on the ASEAN Community’s Post 2025 Vision; Bandar Seri Begawan Declaration on the ASEAN Strategic and Holistic Implementation to Link ASEAN Responses to Emergencies and Disasters (ASEAN SHIELD); and the status of Timor Leste’s application for ASEAN Membership.

The Meeting discussed the proposal for the Establishment of the High-Level Committee of the ASCC and endorsed the ASCC Assessment Report, which was developed upon the ASCC Fact-Finding Mission in July 2022, on Timor-Leste’s membership application. The Meeting also agreed to expedite the deployment of the Secondment Officers to ASEAN to meet up the full quorum of the Committee of Permanent Representatives (CPR) in order to strengthen ASCC institutional effectiveness.

The Meeting reiterated appreciation for the excellent hosting of the 33rd SOCA Meeting under the Cambodia’s Chairmanship and look forward to the in-coming Chair Indonesia in 2023.

Source: Agency Kampuchea Press