Under the leadership of the ASEAN Committee on Disaster Management (ACDM), five-year AADMER Work Programmes (AWPS) have been implemented since 2010 to bolster disaster resilience in the region. The third edition of the AADMER Work Programme for the period of 2021 to 2025 focuses on five priority programmes: risk monitoring and analysis, prevention and mitigation, preparedness and response, resilient recovery, and global leadership. Through these AADMER Work Programmes, several flagship initiatives and projects have been implemented to enhance disaster management in the region.
The ACDM promotes forward and outward-looking perspectives on ASEAN disaster management through the ASEAN Vision 2025 on Disaster Management. The ASEAN Vision 2025 on Disaster Management, adopted by the ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Disaster Management in 2015, affirms ASEAN’s aspirations to strengthen disaster resilience in the region.
This vision is pursued through three key strategic elements: institutionalisation and communications, financing and resource mobilisation, and partnership and innovations. The ASEAN Vision 2025 on Disaster Management also articulates the region’s unwavering commitment to attaining global leadership in disaster management by 2025 and beyond. With strengthened cooperation and a wealth of experience in disaster management, ASEAN is firmly progressing towards becoming a global leader in this field, poised to share its valuable experiences and best practices with the international community.
The ACDM’s work also contributed to developing the ASEAN Declaration on “One ASEAN, One Response: ASEAN Responding to Disasters as One in the Region and Outside the Region.”
The Declaration, adopted by ASEAN Leaders during the 28th ASEAN Summit in Vientiane in 2016, is a testament to ASEAN’s steadfast dedication to achieving swifter responses, increased resources, and more robust coordination in addressing disasters.
The ACDM also serves as the Governing Board of the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on disaster management (AHA Centre) and has guided the AHA Centre to grow its capacity over time and become the main engine of ASEAN in proactively providing humanitarian assistance alongside managing disasters. The centre has become the main engine of ASEAN in proactively identifying potential hazards and risks to ensure ample warning time, minimise potential damage, and provide assistance in responding to major disasters in the region.
AHA Centre has established the Disaster Emergency Logistics System for ASEAN (DELSA), the ASEAN Emergency Response and Assessment Team (ASEAN-ERAT). ASEAN Disaster Information Network (ADINet), the ASEAN Emergency Operations Centre (EOC), and the ASEAN Disaster Risk Monitoring System (DRMS), among others.
Simultaneously, through localisation and a number of capacity building programmes for ASEAN Member States managed by ACDM, the capacities of ASEAN Member States in monitoring, assessing, preventing and mitigating disaster risk, responding to disasters, and recovering from disasters have been enhanced.
ASEAN has undertaken various capacity-building programmes to enhance disaster management expertise. These programmes encompass initiatives like the AHA Centre Executive Capacity Building Programme, the Disaster Risk Management Capacity Building Programme for ASEAN Member States, the Senior Executive Programme on Disaster Management, and the ASEAN Standardisation and Certification for Experts in Disaster Management (ASCEND).
In addition to capacity building, ASEAN is actively engaged in raising public awareness about the significance of disaster risk reduction. These include the observance of the ASEAN Day for Disaster Management and the International Day of Disaster Risk Reduction on October 13th each year. Recognising the pivotal role of youth, ASEAN commemorates the ASEAN Youth in Climate Action and Disaster Resilience Day on November 25th annually.
Moreover, ASEAN has developed comprehensive frameworks and operational guidelines to strengthen disaster management in the region. These include the Standard Operating Procedure for Regional Standby Arrangements and Coordination of Joint Disaster Relief and Emergency Response Operations (SASOP), the ASEAN Joint Disaster Response Plan (AJDRP), the ASEAN Regional Plan of Action for Adaptation to Drought (ARPA-AD), the ASEAN Framework on Anticipatory Action in Disaster Management, and the ASEAN Regional Framework on Protection, Gender, and Inclusion in Disaster Management.
Aligned with the ASEAN Vision 2025 on Disaster Management, the ASEAN Committee on Disaster Management actively participates in global forums to share best practices and experiences in disaster management. These forums encompass events like the Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Week, the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction, and the Asia-Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction.
Under the guidance of the ACDM, cooperation with external partners, United Nations (UN) agencies, and multilateral financial institutions like the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement (IRCRC), has been expanded. The UN continues to collaborate with ASEAN through the ASEAN-UN Joint Strategic Action Plan on Disaster Management.
Furthermore, partnerships with external countries and organisations, such as Australia, China, Canada, the European Union, Japan, the US, France, Germany, Switzerland, the ADB, and the IRCRC Movement are actively promoted through the AADMER Partnership Group. These endeavours underscore ACDM’s commitment to fostering collaboration and enhancing disaster resilience across the region.
Throughout its two-decade journey, the ACDM has achieved remarkable progress in advancing of disaster management in the region. However, with an evolving disaster risk landscape, challenges remain ahead. ASEAN believes that by working together, we can effectively address the challenges and further strengthen disaster resilience in the region, guided by the spirit of “One ASEAN, One Response” and reach ASEAN’s vision of becoming a global leader in disaster management.