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Digital Data Management is key in advancing the digital economies within the ASEAN Economic Community, says new AEC Report


(Jakarta) - The US-ASEAN Business Council and Deloitte today presented a new report, The Digital Economy and the Free Flow of Data: Advancing the ASEAN Economic Community, to the Indonesian government and business community. The report highlights how ASEAN Member States can advance their digital economies and the ASEAN Economic Community through pro-growth digital data management policies. The report was presented during a discussion on Indonesia’s digital economy, co-led by the Indonesian ICT Society (Mastel), the US-ASEAN Business Council and Deloitte.

 “The digital economy plays a strategic role as a critical enabler for deepening ASEAN regional integration and as well as helping drive next generation domestic demand led growth for startups and SME's," said Alexander Feldman, President and CEO of the US-ASEAN Business Council.  “We encourage Indonesia to lead in ASEAN by supporting policies on data management that allow member economies to benefit from greater efficiency, extended reach and lower costs.”

“Regional integration and the digital economy are both big opportunities in what is one of the world’s fastest growing regions. All manner of business, from the start-up to the regional champion as well as the multinational, will benefit if the AEC framework puts the digital economy front & center. Now is the time to do so,” Jeff Pirie, AEC Leader, Deloitte Southeast Asia, added.

In Indonesia and throughout ASEAN, these policies can support modern high-tech industries, enhance the development of e-commerce, help small and medium enterprises reach customers and optimize their businesses, enable financial inclusion, and encourage foreign investment. However, governments need to consider regulatory, legal and policy issues stemming from technology, platforms and providers.  Privacy, security, intellectual property and customer protection are some of the issues that need to be addressed if countries are to benefit from the digital economy.  It is also essential to ensure that it is the risk, not the actor, that is regulated. Further, inter-agency cooperation is essential if ASEAN member states are to have effective digital laws and regulations as issues cut across many different sectors.

Amol Gupte, Citi Country Officer (CCO) for Singapore and Head of ASEAN said, “Digitization of financial services has a positive impact on ASEAN integration and the economies of Southeast Asia. To maximize the full potential of digitization across the region, there is need for a supportive policy framework. Particularly crucial is the ability to move data quickly and seamlessly across borders which will benefit trade, increase innovation and support financial inclusion. Citi is committed to helping our clients benefit from the opportunities digital networks bring such as in the area of payment innovation.”
The US- ASEAN Business Council, Deloitte and Mastel forum held today included remarks by Honorable Nina Hachigian, U.S. Ambassador to ASEAN and H.E. Rudiantara, Minister of Communications and Information Technology and a focus group discussion on Indonesia’s growing digital economy and how the findings of the report can best be applied to support growth and innovation in Indonesia. The panelists included Iryani Pramudianingsih, Deputy Director for Electronic-based Trading from Ministry of Trade, Teguh Prasetya, Member of the Board of Mastel, Sari Kacaribu, Head of Regulation for Indonesia’s E-Commerce Association (idEA), Claudia Chan, Regional Director, Government Affairs, Asia Pacific for Seagate, Tim Utama, Managing Director, Operations & Technology for Citibank Indonesia and Erik Koenen, Director at Deloitte Consulting, South East Asia.

The report was developed by the US-ASEAN Business Council and Deloitte, with support from Cisco, Citi, Google, MasterCard, Microsoft, and Seagate.
To read the report, please click here.

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For over 30 years, the US-ASEAN Business Council has been the premier advocacy organization for US corporations operating within the dynamic Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Worldwide, the Council's 150+ membership generates over $6 trillion in revenue and employ more than 13 million people. Members include the largest US companies conducting business in ASEAN, and range from newcomers to the region to companies that have been working in Southeast Asia for over 100 years. The Council has offices in: Washington, DC; New York, NY; Bangkok, Thailand; Hanoi, Vietnam; Jakarta, Indonesia; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Manila, Philippines; and Singapore.



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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.

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