ASEAN needs to take advantage of technology

The culture, arts and creative industry sectors was not spared from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. This has prompted ASEAN to adapt to the situation and adopt new normals, leveraging on technology with strong determination to be more cohesive in its responses.


The matter was highlighted by the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, Yang Berhormat Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin at the 9th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting responsible for Culture and Arts (9th AMCA) and Meetings Related to Dialogue Partners.


The meeting was chaired by the Minister of Culture and Fine Arts of the Kingdom of Cambodia, Her Excellency Dr. Phoeurng Sackona, and was attended by ASEAN Ministers Responsible for Culture and the Arts and Dialogue Partners, People’s Republic of China, Japan and Republic of Korea as well as the Secretary General of ASEAN.


The 9th AMCA Meeting themed ‘Impact of COVID-19 and Way Forward for the Culture and Arts Sector’ agreed to continue ASEAN’s efforts in addressing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially on cultural practices, the cultural industry and the creative industry.


The Ministers also agreed to continue cooperation in the culture and arts sector.


Among those shared by the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports during the meeting were the initiatives implemented by Brunei Darussalam nationwide, in several aspects.


This includes government efforts to minimise risks of transmission in public spaces through closure of museums, galleries and libraries.


In addition, the Minister also shared the efforts made by the creative sector to increase public awareness and encourage public support for frontliners and public health measures through social media campaigns, songs and videos, and spread through the use of hashtags, #bruneicovid and #teranahdirumah.


At the same time, the ability of the creative sector in adapting to new norms in the delivery of virtual services were also shared, where new technologies have been optimized to ensure business continuity through e-Library and e-Exhibition platforms, and the rise of e-Commerce, e-Presentation and online training, digital entrepreneurs and new media.


The Minister also shared the proposed direction of the cultural sector for ASEAN, which is to leverage technology in connecting ASEAN communities, artists and cultural arts practitioners.


Technology, too, the Minister explained, should be used to enhance relations towards strengthening the ASEAN Community.


In turn, AMCA should also foster innovation and creativity through virtual methods, and increase the diversity of multi-media content for the purpose of promoting traditional artistic expression and contemporary ASEAN. The Minister also suggested increasing online consultations between policy makers, professionals, practitioners and institutions to strengthen cultural heritage management. Using e-Commerce methods drives the development of the creative industry


With the increase in content creators from the youth, the Minister emphasised the importance of synergy among relevant ASEAN sectoral bodies and strategic partners to develop the digital capabilities of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises in the creative industry.


The AMCA Ministers issued a Joint Statement which among others, expressed support and commitment to promote the Narrative of ASEAN Identity to be presented to the ASEAN Heads of State in the 37th Summit.


This narrative aims to strengthen ASEAN as a Community by taking into account inherited values and constructed values.


The Ministers also welcomed the development of the implementation of the ASEAN Strategic Plan in Culture and the Arts (2016-2025).


AMCA Ministers also took note of the development of ASEAN Key Performance Indicators for the Culture and Arts sector and its implementation.


At the Joint Dialogue Meeting (People’s Republic of China, Japan and Republic of Korea), the Ministers expressed their appreciation on the implementation of their respective action plans and emphasise the importance of cooperation in the field of cultural exchange, cultural heritage management and human resource development.


The Ministers took note of the establishment of a network of ASEAN + 3 cultural cities as the basis for long-term ASEAN + 3 cooperation.


In this meeting as well, Seam Reap City was declared as the ASEAN Cultural City 2020-2022.


The meeting was preceded by a Meeting of Senior Officials Responsible for Culture and the Arts and Meetings Related to Dialogue Partners.


The meeting was also attended by the Permanent Secretary (Community and Culture), Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports (MCYS), Dayang Hajah Nor Ashikin binti Haji Johari, as well as senior officials of MCYS.


Source: The Government Public Relations Department