President Tran Dai Quang delivers a speech at the 16th Francophone Summit. Photo: VNA
The 16th Francophone
Summit was held in the Convention Centre in Antananarivo, capital of
Madagascar, on 26-27 Nobember2016. Attending were 30 Presidents, Prime
Ministers and several senior leaders of 80 member countries of the
International Organisation of La Francophonie (OIF), international and
regional organizations, including the delegation of Vietnam led by
President Tran Dai Quang.
After two days of work, the16th Francophone Summit successfully concluded, achieving important results for the Francophone community. The Summit discussed ways to promote equalgrowth and responsible development,contributing to ensuring peace and stability among member nations and the world. The leaders also discussed the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and the commitments of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, proposed specific measures to accelerate the implementation of the Strategic Framework of the Francophonie for 2015-2022, the Francophone’s Youth Strategy and the Francophonie Economic Strategywith a focus on empowering women and youth.
The Summit ratified the Antananarivo Statement and 13 resolutions, and discussed orientation of the community in the fields of security, anti-terrorism, education, economic cooperation , sustainable development, language diversity and culture, health, energy, among others. Notably, in the Summit’s documents, the leaders suggested OIFincrease efforts to prevent and resolve crises, conflicts, build and reinforce peace, promote compliance with principles of international law, including the principle of settling disputes by peaceful means. In particular, the leaders expressed concern over the East Sea situation, taking into account the recent developments in the region, called on the parties concerned to exercise maximum restraint, resolve disputes by peaceful means in the basis of international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. They also welcomed efforts to maintain peace, security, stability and freedom, safety of navigation and aviation in the region.
The Summitadmitted New Caledonia (France) as associate member and Argentina, South Korea and Ontario (Canada) as observers, bringing its total number of members and observers from 80 to 84 members. The increasing number of countries and regions in different continents to join the International Organization of La Francophonie demonstrates its growing prestige and status. The organization is increasingly becoming a important multilateral forum for each member country to implement its foreign policy, along with other member states to find solutions to global challenges, thereby promoting peace, security and sustainable development in the world.
Vietnam - an active and responsible member in the Francophone Community
As the only representative from Asia-Pacific, speaking at the opening session, President Tran Dai Quang stated that Vietnam welcomed the theme of the Summit. He praised host country of Madagascar for hosting the Summit and expressed thanks to Madagascar for its special friendly sentiment towards Vietnam and President Ho Chi Minh-the beloved leader of the Vietnamese people.
President Tran Dai Quang said that over the past period, amid complicated developments in the world situation and the Francophone space, through multilateral and bilateral institutions, the Francophone communityhas closely coordinated with international and regional organizations, especially the United Nations and the African Union to strengthen activities to prevent and settleconflicts, crises, political instability and anti-terrorism in some member states on the basis of respect for international law and the UN Charter, actively contributing to maintaining peace, security and stability of the Francophone community and the world.
With great efforts of the Member States and the effective support of the International Organization of La Francophonie, the Francophone community has achieved important outcomes in realizing the Millennium Development Goals, especially in hunger eradication, poverty reduction, improvement of educational and healthcare service quality and living standards of the people, environmental protection, genderequalitypromotion, and child care and protection.
Vietnam welcomed the Francophone community for its efforts to enhance language and culture diversity, the protection and preservation of each country’s cultural identities, partnerships between the OIF membersand other countries. Vietnam was pleased with the OIF countries’ positive contribution to the common efforts of the international community to reach important agreements, particularly the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Paris Agreement on Climate Change,and the Addis Abeba Action Agenda on Financing for Development which demonstrate the strong determination of the international community, the French-speaking countries to build a world of peace, stability, sustainable development and " no one is left behind."
As an active and responsible memberof the Francophone community, Vietnam has actively implemented strategies and cooperation programs, making an important contribution to enhancing the solidarity and internal unity, expanding cooperation between the member states, thereby contributing to the community’s prosperity. Given successful cooperation models, with social responsibility and for the benefit of business community that Vietnam has built in a number of Francophone countries in agriculture, information-telecommunication, hydropower fields, Vietnam advocates and is ready to further deepen economic cooperation with Francophone countries, exchange and share experiences on socio-economic development with member states, especially African countries.
To concretize the theme of the Summit, President Tran Dai Quang asked the Francophone community to give priority to cooperation, and enhancement of solidarity for peace, stability and sustainable development. Specifically, the Francophone community needs to step up economic cooperation, effectively implement the Francophone Economic Strategy, give priority to connect developing economies and support these countries’ international economic integration, strengthen cooperation with the international community to build a new and more equal world order, promote inclusive and equal economic growth models, take advantage of opportunities brought about by the fourth industrial revolution, generate more jobs, reduce inequalities, and empower women and youth.
Besides, to promote and support the implementation of the Agenda 2030 and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, enhance support to member countries to integrate sustainable development goals and commitments of the Paris Agreement in strategies and national development programs, pay attention to exchanging and sharing experiences in response to climate change, disaster risk reduction, green growth promotion, and use of renewable energy, actively participate in international and regional efforts to consolidate peace, security and stability in the Member States and the world.
The President also asked the Francophone community to continue serving as an objective voice on the East Sea issue, and to urge relevant parties to abstain from using force or threatening to use force, to settle disputes by peaceful means on the basis of international law, including the 1982United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, to respect diplomatic and legalprocess, adhere to the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (COC), and work to finalize the Code of Conduct in the East Sea (DOC).
President Tran Dai Quang affirmed that in the world full of changes, no country, whether big or small, rich or poor, could deal alone with traditional and non-traditionalsecurity challenges. Therefore, to solve these challenges , member countries and the international community need to be united and closely cooperate. Accordingly, Vietnam is ready to be a bridge linking the Francophone community to ASEAN and the Asia-Pacific region to join efforts for a world of peace, stability and sustainable development.