Where are Asia’s economies headed to in the short and long term? What shape are they in to withstand future financial crises? And how can they respond to the yawning rich-poor divide, now a key concern among Asian and global policymakers? These were some of the key points discussed over the first two days of business at our 47th Annual Meeting, held in Astana, Kazakhstan.
Asian success stories have broken down the old distinctions between rich countries and poor, developing and developing, development assistance providers and aid recipients.
Almost 1,500 years ago in the sixth and seventh century, southern Kazakhstan was part of the famous Silk Road that carried goods, ideas and cultural influences from as far as China to Europe.
We’ve wrapped up our 47th Annual Meeting in Astana today with plenty of food for thought on what lies ahead for our vast, diverse region.
The rise of mega-regionals such as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) suggest that the world trade system is fragmenting to appear more like a jigsaw puzzle than a spaghetti bowl. How do we resolve the growing mess?
The ASEAN Economic Community, planned to come into effect in 2015, is expected to liberalize goods, capital and skilled labor flows in the ASEAN region. While there has been considerable progress in the area of trade integration, financial integration still lags behind. The ASEAN Banking Integration Framework, which aims to liberalize the banking market by 2020, could help pave the way for further integration and the entry of ASEAN banks into regional banking markets.
“The law hath not been dead, though it had slept.” When Shakespeare wrote those lines, he never knew that many, many years down the road, he may actually be referring to the enforcement of environmental law by the judiciary around the world.
The offshore renminbi bond market has boomed since the People’s Republic of China (PRC) authorities first allowed domestic banks to issue them in Hong Kong, China in June 2007. But appetite for the paper—popularly known as “dim sum bonds”—is starting to wane as access to onshore markets becomes easier. To stay relevant, the dim sum market must develop further.
The recent formal pledging session for the Green Climate Fund (GCF)—more than $9 billion in just 5 months—is by far the most successful resource mobilization ever seen for a multilateral climate fund. The US has pledged $3 billion, followed by Japan ($1.5 billion), UK ($1.13 billion), and Germany and France (with $1 billion each). Four developing countries—Indonesia, Mexico, Mongolia, and Panama—have made pledges, breaking the traditional donor boundaries.
Launched as a political bloc and security pact in the aftermath of the Viet Nam War, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has evolved to embrace an ambitious economic agenda. Its latest project is to establish the ASEAN Economic Community by 31 December 2015. But is this likely?