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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs    21 November 2012

US-Asean enter Expanded Economic Engagement (E3)


The United States and Asean have drawn up a new framework for economic cooperation to expand trade and investment.

The so-called US-Asean Expanded Economic Engagement, or E3 initiative, was agreed upon during a meeting between US President Barack Obama and leaders of the 10 Asean nations yesterday in Phnom Penh.

The E3 initiative will create new business opportunities and jobs in all 11 countries, a White House statement said.

It identifies specific ways in which to facilitate US-Asean trade and investment, increase efficiency and competitiveness of trade flows and supply chains throughout Asean, and build greater awareness of the commercial opportunities that the growing US-Asean economic relationship presents.

"By working together on these E3 initiatives, the US and Asean will lay the groundwork for Asean countries to prepare to join high-standard trade agreements, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement," the statement said.

E3 will begin with a set of concrete joint activities that will include:

- Negotiation of a US-Asean trade facilitation agreement such as simplified customs procedures and increased transparency of customs administration.

- Joint development of information and communications technology principles, to guide policymakers on issues like cross-border information flows.

- Joint development of investment principles to address essential elements of investment policies, including market access, non-discrimination, investor protection, transparency, and responsible business conduct.

- Additional work on standards development and practices for small- and medium-sized enterprises and trade and the environment.

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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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