Is the country ready for AEC 2015?
C&C VIEWS - Ed F. Limtingco (The Freeman) - September 25, 2013 - 12:00am

According to IDEA’s latest copy of Economic Monitor, a regular publication of the Institute for Development and Econometric Analysis, Inc. (IDEA), development has become a buzzword, be it in economic, social, or political terms in today’s society. Numerous efforts are now being forwarded in order to meet certain developmental goals. The Philippines is no exception when it comes to moving towards development, with the country preparing for fuller integration into the ASEAN Economic Community by 2015.

In 1967, five countries Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand met in Bangkok to form an alliance aimed towards regional cooperation: an interaction among the member countries that would help them develop their economy, culture, and society, and establish regional peace and stability. This alliance became known as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Since then, ASEAN has expanded, and is now composed of ten countries: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.

According to the same published report, currently the region is one of the pillars of growth in Asia, growing by roughly 6 percent per year, in addition to China and India. Prospects for the region remain robust, especially for its five largest economies, the ASEAN 5, with an expected average growth of roughly 5.6 percent in the next six years. This growth is the second highest among regional groups, according to the International Monetary Fund Forecasts.

Per IDEA, in order to better meet its goal of a highly competitive and stable economic region, ASEAN espoused the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The AEC aims to unify the ten member nations as a single base and market that would assist economic development and facilitate global integration. The establishment of the AEC was first declared in 2003, as an effort to keep pace with emerging markets China and India, and to direct the investors’ attention towards the region. In 2007, the AEC Blueprint was adopted. This Blueprint contained the vision, goals, and time table, with four key characteristics for the said community.

In order to better meet its goal of a highly competitive and stable economic region, ASEAN espoused the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The AEC aims to unify the ten member nations as a single production base and market that would assist economic development and facilitate global integration. The establishment of the AEC was first declared in 2003, as an effort to keep pace with emerging markets China and India, and to direct the investors’ attention towards the region. In 2007, the AEC Blue-print was adopted. This Blueprint contained the AEC vision, goals, and time table, with four key characteristics for the said community.  The AEC was originally scheduled for launch in 2020, but was moved forward to the start of 2015. In 2012, ASEAN leaders pushed back the launch of the community to the end of 2015 to give the members more time to adjust and make necessary changes.

Lastly, apart from a fortified interaction among ASEAN members, the AEC also aims to broaden the horizons for economic development, particularly in trade. This may be achieved through establishing stronger ties with other Asian countries, such as China, India, Japan, and South Korea, according to the researchers of IDEA.

For comments, rejoinders and questions related to credit & collection, send email to elimtingco@yahoo.com

AEC ASEAN ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS CHINA AND INDIA DEVELOPMENT AND ECONOMETRIC ANALYSIS ECONOMIC ECONOMIC COMMUNITY ECONOMIC MONITOR INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND FORECASTS SOUTH KOREA THIS BLUEPRINT
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