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ASEAN ANALYSIS  31 October 2010


By  David Swartzentruber

AseanAffairs     31 October 2010

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These were the most significant stories that AseanAffairs reported during the week of October 23-31.

Asean faces rate dilemma
Asian countries are facing a difficult dilemma - if they increase interest rates to curb demand fuelled by foreign capital inflows, they risk inducing even more inflows, Anoop Singh, the IMF director for Asia-Pacific for the International Monetary Fund (IMF) says.

Philippines central bank raises reserves
THE Philippine central bank again raised its international reserves forecast after the country's dollar cache breached the full-year goal at end-September. Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. said the country's gross international reserves (GIR) may reach between $54 billion and $55 billion this year, from an earlier forecast of between $49 billion and $50 billion.

Asean to challenge Asia's giants
The leaders of the 10 Asean member countries will convene this week to discuss a new master plan for enhancing ties and building new infrastructure that would allow the group to compete with rising economic giants China and India.

Cambodia issues stock exchange licenses
The Securities and Exchange Commission of Cambodia has issued licenses to at least five firms to act as brokers, dealers and underwriters on Cambodia's new stock exchange.

Thai-China high speed rail is a go
A joint Thai parliamentary meeting on Tuesday approved a proposed draft framework of Thailand-China negotiations to construct a high speed train system in Thailand. The meeting voted 295 to 10 in favour of the draft framework approved by the cabinet last month.

Australian lawmakers question Singapore exchange bid
Australian lawmakers on Tuesday signaled they might scuttle the Singapore Exchange's $8.3 billion cash and shares bid for the operator of the Australian bourse. READ MORE:

Laos to develop renewable energy
The Ministry of Energy and Mines expects to complete a draft of the renewable energy development strategy and will submit it to the government for approval by the end of this year.

Philippines remains corrupt
THE country's ranking in global corruption improved during the past three years, but the country is still tagged as "highly corrupt" among 178 countries, according to a Transparency International (TI) survey.

Asean to fast-track AEC plan
The leaders of the 10 Southeast Asian countries who are Asean members will move on Thursday to fast-track an ambitious plan to establish the Asean Economic Community by 2015 while hoping to dodge discord over military-ruled Myanmar.

Indonesia wants common Asean currency
Indonesia is arm-twisting fellow members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) to adopt a common currency stance ahead of next month's Group of 20 summit to aid progress on a broader policy initiative.

Thai central bank lifts growth forecast
The Bank of Thailand expects the strong baht and widespread flooding to have a minimal impact on the economy in 2011.

Intel opens its biggest chip plant in Vietnam
US-based chip maker Intel on Friday opened in Vietnam a billion-dollar assembly and test facility billed as the company's biggest.

Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr

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