Sign up | Log in



Home  >>  Daily News  >>  ASEAN STOCK WATCH

ASEAN STOCK WATCH Asean Affairs  2 May2013 

What is the ASEAN Economic Community

Shayne Heffernan takes a look at the ASEAN Economic Community and how it will change South East Asia

The ASEAN Economic Community as the economic community is known, is a strategy to boost the region’s economic clout. A blueprint adopted in November 2007 sets targets and timelines to fuse the 10 disparate Southeast Asian countries into a single market and production base by 2015.

The plans go beyond liberalizing trade in goods. Services, investment, skilled labor and capital will also be allowed to move across borders more freely, a landmark step in economic cooperation for the region.

Its members are the 10 Asean countries with a total population of 600 million people. Asean was set up in 1967 as a bulwark against communism in the Cold War era but it was only in the last two decades that attention shifted to economic integration.

A wide economic gulf divides Southeast Asia’s rich and middle income economies—Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Brunei, Thailand and the Philippines—and its four less developed members, communist Vietnam and Laos, Myanmar and Cambodia.

Changes will not be abrupt because the targets have been implemented gradually over the last five years.

In the area of goods, Southeast Asia has made headway with a free trade agreement in place since 2010. Its six more developed members have already eliminated tariffs on goods they trade with one another. There are a handful of sensitive items that are excluded such as rice and sugar, as well as artifacts and weapons. The other four members—Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam—have until 2018 to phase out import duties.

By 2015, custom clearance procedures will be streamlined through the establishment of a “single window” system. The centralized platform will link government agencies through a single Internet-based portal for permits, licenses and clearances from traders, helping to cut paper work and lower costs. Goods brought into Southeast Asian countries will not need further customs clearance when re-exported within the region.

Trade in services will be liberalized in many areas including telecommunications, air transport, health care, education, information technology, tourism, logistics services, construction and environmental services. Investors from Southeast Asia will be permitted up to 70 percent ownership in companies within these industries, which should boost competition.

There will be freer movement of the professional workforce as well as investment and capital within the region. Southeast Asian officials are also considering an Asean business travel card to further facilitate commerce within the region.

The 10 members will maintain their economic and financial independence. There will be no central agencies such as a common central bank, parliament or court as in Europe. The AEC is based more on consensus than creating overarching institutions that take on some of the powers of member governments.

Nearly 80 percent of measures in the economic community blueprint have been completed as of March 2013. Asean says it is on track to meet a Dec. 31, 2015, deadline. However, it says that is not the finishing line for the economic community. Southeast Asian officials say more work is required on domestic reforms, infrastructure and strengthening skills. Efforts must also be made to address trade and investment impediments, non-tariff barriers and other regulatory hindrances that have replaced tariffs as protective measures for some industries. At the same time, government corruption and unreliable courts in the region also create roadblocks to trade because they make contracts hard to enforce.

The economic community allows special and differential treatment for its less developed members, such as giving them longer time to liberalize. Since 2000, a program has been in place to help Asean’s four poorer nations—Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam—speed their development through financial and technical assistance, economic and technological cooperation, and human resource training. Asean also says they will benefit from the expansion of trade and investment within the region. Freer movement of people will also boost tourism in those countries.

HeffCap ASEAN Dividend Focused CFD Fund, great protection in the current economic environment

Shayne Heffernan Ph.D.
Economist/Hedge Fund Manager

Live Trading News

Thomson Reuters
Knightsbridge Law
Heffernan Capital Management
Heffernan Shipping

Chinese Society of Economists
American Economic Society
Linda Johnson, Business Development Director - Private Client Group, Heffernan Capital Management
3 Raffles Place #07-01
Bharat Building Singapore 048617
Tel: +65 6329 6408 Fax: +65 6329 9699
Email :
New York 347 5th Avenue, Suite 1402-508 NY, NY 10016


Comment on this Article. Send them to
Letters that do not contain full contact information cannot be published.
Letters become the property of AseanAffairs and may be republished in any format.
They typically run 150 words or less and may be edited
submit your comment in the box below 

Today's  Stories    3 May 2013 Subsribe Now !
• Thai bourse awards winners of capital market learning center concept contest Subcribe: Asean Affairs Global Magazine
• Norway adds 10 new scholarships for Myanmar students to study at AIT in 2013 Asean Affairs Premium
• AirAsia Introduces New Energy Drink On Board
• Thai bourse lists KPNPF property fund on May 3
Research Reports
on Thailand 2007-2008

•Textiles and Garments Industry

•Coffee industry

•Leather and footwear industry

•Shrimp industry

• AirAsia X Records 20.9% Growth in First Quarter 2013
• MAS Consults on Proposed Regulatory Requirements for Renminbi (RMB) Foreign Exchange Conversion in China
• Vietnamese consumers spent nearly USD1.14 billion on 3.5 million units of air-conditioners
• Thai Fest in Tokyo 2013 is ready to amaze the visitors
• ASEAN-Japan Enhance Further Cooperation in Information and Communication Technology
• Improving ASEAN Healthcare Through Medical Device Regulation Harmonization
• ASEAN is a Priority in Canada’s Foreign Policy
• Germany to expand investments in Manila
Asean Analysis            3 May 2013 Advertise Your Brand
• Asean Analysis- May 3, 2013  
• Asean Weekly- May 3, 2013 Sponsor Our Events
Asean Stock Watch     3 May 2013
• Asean Stock Watch-May 3, 2013  
• Asean Stock Watch-May 2, 2013  

ASEAN NEWS UPDATES      Updated: 04 January 2011

 • Women Shariah scholars see gender gap closing
• Bank Indonesia may hold key rate as inflation hits 7 percent
• Bursa Malaysia to revamp business rules
• Private property prices hit new high in Singapore • Bangkok moves on mass transport
• Thai retailers are upbeat
• Rice exports likely to decline • Vietnamese PM projects 10-year socioeconomic plan


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






1.  Verifier

1. Verifier

For security purposes, we ask that you enter the security code that is shown in the graphic. Please enter the code exactly as it is shown in the graphic.
Your Code
Enter Code

Home | About Us | Contact Us | Special Feature | Features | News | Magazine | Events | TV | Press Release | Advertise With us

Our Products | Work with us | Terms of Use | Site Map | Privacy Policy | Refund Policy | Shipping/Delivery Policy | DISCLAIMER |

Version 5.0
Copyright © 2007-2015 TIME INTERNATIONAL MANAGEMENT ENTERPRISES CO., LTD. All rights reserved.
Bangkok, Thailand