Updated: 11/21/2012 08:07

Several ASEAN countries raise inacurracies in Cambodian chairman's draft statement



Several ASEAN countries raise inacurracies in Cambodian chairman's draft statement

Officials from the 21st ASEAN Summit say a problematic paragraph on the South China Sea disputes has been removed from the Chairman's statement and Singapore is going along with the final document. 

That paragraph had stated that there was consensus that the South China Sea issue should not be internationalised. 

This led to several ASEAN member countries requesting the chair to correct the inaccuracy. 

Singapore's Foreign Affairs Ministry said the Chairman's draft statement had misquoted the leaders on the South China Sea discussions. 

And together with the Philippines which first raised the issue, Brunei, Indonesia, Vietnam and Singapore explained their respective positions to the Chair on the matter. 

Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong also stressed that the South China Sea issue isn't going to stop the claimant states from working with one another.

So one major project that was launched at the close of the Cambodian summit is the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.

Mr Lee said it aims to group ASEAN and its FTA partners together in a free trade agreement.

Talks will start next year and the chairmanship of ASEAN has been handed to Brunei for 2013.

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