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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        9  April 2011

Indonesia urges Asean countries to speed up integration

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Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on Friday called on Asean countries to speed up economic integration.

Yudhoyono, addressing a meeting of finance ministers from the Association Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) in Bali, said member countries must take steps to liberalize financial services, develop capital markets and manage capital flows, according to the Antara news agency.

The president also urged the ministers to work together to formulate customs policy to implement the so-called Asean Single Window, a project allowing member countries to exchange import and export data online.

"Another challenge is how to formulate taxation policy that can remove barriers to integration and guarantee regional dialogue which will result in real action," he was quoted as saying.

The 10-member grouping plans to create the Asean Economic Community, with some but not all of the features of the European Union by 2015.


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ASEAN  ANALYSIS

This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More

 

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