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International: First UK-ASEAN ministerial meeting brings Plan of Action for 2022 to 2026

The United Kingdom's Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office announced, on 4 August 2022, that the first meeting between the UK and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations ('ASEAN') had taken place, on the same date, in Cambodia, and that Minister Amanda Milling and ASEAN foreign ministers had agreed a plan of action for 2022 to 2026. In particular, the Plan of Action outlines UK and ASEAN shared priorities across political, security, economic, and global issues over the next five years. Furthermore, the Plan of Action intends to deepen cooperation on trade, investment, defence, and security, including cybersecurity, climate change, girls' education, digital, and science and technology. More specifically, the meeting constituted the first ASEAN-UK Post-Ministerial Conference since the UK had become an ASEAN Dialogue Partner, and that the UK is the first to achieve this status in 25 years.

In relation to cybersecurity, the Plan of Action highlights that parties will, among other things, promote responsible state behaviour in cyberspace and promote a rules-based cyberspace based on international law, and strengthen cooperation on tackling cyber threats and the impact of cyber attacks. In addition, the Plan of Action states that the UK and ASEAN will promote digital cooperation and share best practices and information on data protection, emerging digital technologies, and digital connectivity.

You can read the press release here and the Plan of Action here.