OSCE Asian Partners Conference: Strengthening Multilateral Cooperation for Common Challenges

PeopleDiplomats ♦ Published: July 23, 2023; 22:42 ♦ (Vindobona)

The OSCE Asian Partners for Co-operation Group Conference held in Vienna has brought together participants to discuss synergies and opportunities for cooperation with a particular emphasis on strengthening dialogue between the OSCE and Asia.

The OSCE Asian Partners for Co-operation Group Conference in Vienna focused on enhancing dialogue between the OSCE and Asia to address common challenges. / Picture: © OSCE / Mikhail Evstafiev (CC BY-ND 4.0)

The conference has explored ways to reduce the risks of conflict arising from the use of information and communication technologies, foster effective cooperation in addressing climate change challenges, and enhance the role of civil society in promoting human rights, democracy, and the rule of law.

At the opening session, OSCE Chairman-in-Office Bujar Osmani highlighted the close link between security in the OSCE region and that of its neighboring regions. He stressed the importance of working together, learning from each other, and revitalizing multilateralism in the face of shared challenges and opportunities.

The event, co-hosted by Poland, the 2023 OSCE Asian Partners for Co-operation Group Chair, and Australia, an Asian Partner for Co-operation of the OSCE, has been a significant platform for fruitful discussions and exchanges on crucial global issues. Participants, including representatives from the OSCE and Asian Partner countries, have engaged in constructive dialogues to address existential challenges such as the Russian aggression against Ukraine.

Zbigniew Rau, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Poland, emphasized the invaluable nature of the OSCE Asian Partnership, providing an essential platform for discussions with OSCE Partner countries. The cooperation between Europe and Asia is of utmost importance in tackling global challenges that require collective efforts.

Senator the Hon Penny Wong, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Australia, stressed the enduring value of agreed rules, standards, and norms in the context of Russia's ongoing war. She advocated for upholding the principles of international law and the necessity of collaboration across issues such as cyber security, climate security, and human rights.

Helga Maria Schmid, OSCE Secretary General, expressed her gratitude to Poland and Australia for organizing the conference. She emphasized the value of cooperation with OSCE partners and the benefits of sharing experiences and knowledge to tackle challenges collectively.

The OSCE Asian Partners for Co-operation Group Conference has served as an important platform for OSCE participating States and Partners for Co-operation to exchange experiences and insights on common areas of interest. Discussions and dialogues at the conference have contributed to strengthening ties between Europe and Asia in the pursuit of shared security and stability.