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ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting – Plus (ADMM-Plus)

Syllabus- International Relations [GS Paper-2]

Context- Defence Minister of India Shri Rajnath Singh recently attended the 10th ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting – Plus (ADMM-Plus) in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Key Highlights

  • The ASEAN Security Community (ASC) Action Plan adopted at the 10th ASEAN Summit commits to the establishment of an annual ASEAN Defense Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM). 
  • Consequently, the first ADMM was held in Kuala Lumpur in 2006 and became ASEAN’s preeminent defense advisory and cooperation mechanism. 
  • ADMM-Plus serves as a central platform for ASEAN and its eight dialogue partners – Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Russia and the United States (collectively known as the Plus countries). 
  • This cooperation aims to strengthen security and defense cooperation to promote peace, stability and development in the region.  
  • The inaugural meeting of ADMM-Plus was held in 2010 in Hanoi, Vietnam. 
  • Since 2017,  ADMM-Plus has organized annual meetings that provide a platform for intensified dialogue and cooperation between ASEAN and Plus countries, especially in the increasingly complex regional security environment. 

Steps taken by India for Maritime Security: 

  • SAGAR Program (Security and Economic Growth for All in the Region): This is a maritime initiative aimed at ensuring India’s peace, stability and prosperity  in the Indian Ocean region. 
  • Indo-Pacific Maritime Domain Awareness (IPMDA) Initiative: IPMDA is a technology and education initiative to increase maritime  awareness in the Indo-Pacific region and increase transparency of its critical waterways.


  • Promote the capacity building of ASEAN member states to jointly respond to common security challenges, recognizing the different capabilities of each member. 
  • Promotes mutual trust between defense agencies by increasing dialogue and openness and fostering a cooperative and open climate. 
  • Cooperate on defense and security initiatives to enhance  peace and stability in the region, especially in response to international security challenges in the region. 
  • Promote the implementation of the ASEAN Security Community in accordance with the principles of the Bali Concord II.  
  • This includes striving for peace, stability, democracy and prosperity in the region so that ASEAN member states can live in harmony with each other and the wider global community.  
  • Facilitate the implementation of the Vientiane Agenda, which outlines ASEAN’s commitment to building a peaceful, secure and prosperous ASEAN.  
  • This requires the adoption of outward-oriented external relations strategies with dialogue partners in accordance with common goals. 

Track record: 

  • ADMM Plus focuses on seven key areas of practical cooperation, namely Maritime Security (MS), Counter-Terrorism (CT), Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Management (HADR), Peacekeeping Operations (PKO), Military Medicine (MM), Humanitarian Mine Action (HMA) and Cyber ​​Security (CS). 
  • Expert Working Groups (EWGs) have been established to facilitate cooperation in these areas. Each EWG is chaired by one ASEAN member state and one additional country for three years. 


  • Membership Principles, define the criteria for participation in the ADMM-Plus process as follows: 
    • A plus country should have the status of a full dialogue partner of ASEAN. 
    • An additional country should have meaningful interactions and relations with the ASEAN defense establishment. 
    • An additional country must demonstrate its ability to cooperate with the ADMM in capacity building, contribute significantly to ensuring regional security, and actively promote capacity building initiatives in the field of regional defense and security.

Source: PIB

Practice question:

Q. Which of the following countries is NOT one of the Plus countries in ADMM-Plus?
  1. Australia
  2. Brazil
  3. Russia
  4. Japan
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