ASEP meeting in Rome highlights inter-dependency of EU, Asian economies

October 8, 2014 6:48 am 

ROME, Oct. 8 — Parliamentarians from Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) members encouraged more effective processes of European-Asian integration in a two-day meeting that ended in Italy's capital Rome on Tuesday.

The Eighth Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership Meeting (ASEP) focused on fostering Asia-Europe dialogue, sustainable growth and stronger governance structures, a statement from ASEP said.

ASEP parliamentarians agreed that European and Asian economies and financial markets have become more inter-dependent. Regional development banks, regional trade agreements, monetary and financial joint initiatives can encourage further integration.

In particular, they stressed the importance of self-reliant fiscal efforts by each country, while underlining the importance of introducing policies aimed at promoting investments and combating unemployment to support economic growth both in Asia and in Europe.

Regarding the central issues of sustainable development and food security, ASEP parliamentarians agreed on the need of creating a regulative environment to support social businesses, the microcredit and the full access for all to technologies.

They especially affirmed the commitment towards strengthening the role of parliaments within supranational economic governance mechanisms, so as to make them more capable of meeting citizens' needs.

Extreme poverty, hunger, malnutrition and climate change were common concerns that require a "comprehensive and sustainable approach to the entire cycle of food production and consumption," according to the statement.

In this perspective, ASEP parliamentarians underlined the importance of agriculture, which remains the largest employment sector in most developing countries and is crucial to ensure food and nutrition security.

They pledged to pay particular attention to family farming and the role of women and young people, as well as to the protection of geographical indications and equitable use of water, the latter being one of the most difficult challenges to the survival of humankind in the near future.

The 10th ASEM Summit to be held in Milan on 16-17 Oct. under the theme "Responsible Partnership for Sustainable Growth and Security" will be another crucial appointment to strengthen cooperation through reinforced political, economic and socio-cultural dialogue, ASEP parliamentarians said. (PNA/Xinhua)

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