JAKARTA, Indonesia 

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) on Wednesday held their foreign ministers’ meeting via video link.

Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, who is chairing the bloc this year, said in his opening remarks the world is facing unprecedented challenges, particularly amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Cohesive and responsive is not merely the theme of ASEAN 2020. Cohesive and responsive, along with proactive and responsible, have become a brand of ASEAN, which enabled us to stand hand-in-hand in the face of immense challenges,” he said.

He said the bloc’s funds to deal with the pandemic should be utilized to promote sustained recovery.

“We need to promptly help our people and businesses restore production and return their life to normal in order to speed up economic recovery,” Phuc told the foreign ministers.

The foreign ministers are expected to discuss regional and international issues such as developments in the South China Sea, Korean Peninsula and Rohingya issue in Myanmar’s Rakhine state.

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