ASEAN Digital Ministers (ADGMIN) Meeting

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    In News

    • Recently, the 2nd ASEAN Digital Ministers (ADGMIN) meeting with India was held on a virtual platform. 

    About ASEAN Digital Ministers (ADGMIN) Meeting

    • Annual meeting: 
      • The ADGMIN is an annual meeting of Telecom Ministers of 10 ASEAN (Association of South-East Asian Nations) countries.
    • Focus of the meeting: 
      • The meeting discussed and deliberated various matters relevant to strengthening regional digital cooperation in the spirit of digital inclusion and integration.
    • Theme:
      • Digital Transformation: the Engine for ASEAN Economic Recovery from COVID-19.
    • Brief History:
      • The ASEAN has convened the Telecommunications and Information Technology Ministers’ Meeting-TELMIN 19 times starting from 2001
      • As of 2020, the meeting was renamed as ASEAN Digital Ministers’ Meeting-ADGMIN. 
      • Alphabetically, Myanmar in its term hosted the 11th meeting in Nay Pyi Taw in 2011 and this meeting was the second time.

    Importance of Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

    • Enabler: 
      • Information and Communication Technologies enable and strengthen democratic systems and institutions through enhanced engagement between citizens and the state. 
    • Promotes Right to speak:
      • Use of ICTs promotes free speech, human rights and the free flow of information.
    • Citizen’s participation:
      • It helps in expanding citizens’ opportunities to participate in decision-making processes and has potential to transform lives of people living in rural areas.
    • ICT and COVID:
      • COVID-19 is not only a challenge for the public health system, but it is also shaking the economic and social orders of the countries. 
      • In this scenario, Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) have emerged as powerful tools to mitigate the effects of pandemic in different spheres of public life and they are foundations of the global economy.
    • India-ASEAN Digital Work Plan 2022:
      • The Ministers meeting approved the India-ASEAN Digital Work Plan 2022. 
      • The work plan includes:
        • system for combating the use of stolen and counterfeit mobile handsets, 
        • WiFi Access network interface for nationwide public internet, 
        • the capacity building and knowledge sharing in emerging areas in the field of Information and Communication Technologies such as:
          • Internet of Things (IoT), 
          • 5G, 
          • Advanced Satellite Communication, 
          • Cyber Forensics, etc. 

    Importance of ASEAN for India

    • ASEAN’s centrality and unity is important in ensuring peace and stability in the region. 
    • India shares a deep connection with ASEAN and has continued its active engagement in many areas contributing to regional peace and stability, particularly through ASEAN led mechanisms, such as:
      • East Asia Summit.
      • ASEAN Regional Forum.
      • ADMM-Plus. 
    • The India-ASEAN strategic partnership has been strengthened by virtue of flourishing cultural and civilisational links and enhanced people-to-people cooperation. 

    Conclusion

    • The ongoing and proposed projects in ICTs, will strengthen collaboration between India and ASEAN by leveraging complementary strengths of each other.
    • This meeting recognized the important role of the digital reform process in the comprehensive development of the ASEAN economy and aimed to lessen the economic and social impacts of COVID-19 in the region.
    • The discussion on the implementation of the project of the ASEAN Digital Strategy 2025 and regional digital cooperation measures and effectively implement the digital reform process approved by the 20th ASEAN Economic Community Council-AECC.

    Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) 

    • It is a political and economic organisation aimed primarily at promoting economic growth and regional stability among its members.
    • It was founded in 1967 by the five South-East Asian nations of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.
      • Brunei Darussalam joined in 1984, Vietnam in 1995, Lao PDR and Myanmar in 1997, and Cambodia in 1999, making up ten Member States of ASEAN.
    • ASEAN Summit is the highest policy-making body in ASEAN comprising the Head of States or Government of ASEAN Member States.
    •  Summit is held twice annually.
    • The First ASEAN Summit was held in Bali, Indonesia in 1976.
    • ASEAN countries are:
      • Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam and dialogue partner countries – Australia, Canada, China, EU, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Russia, UK and US. 

    Source: PIB