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Home > News > ASEAN economies need to sort out customs and harmonise
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ASEAN economies need to sort out customs and harmonise
trade rules

发布时间:2014年9月9日 11时51分


THE Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states are being urged to accelerate the creation of common customs procedures and harmonise its rules to significantly lift trade within the region of 600 million people.

According to Philippines Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, Southeast Asia is unlikely to achieve its aim of integrating its 10 economies by 2015, but it has the potential to become a trading hub for Asia if it creates an economic community.

Mr Purisima said that intra-ASEAN trade has grown 18 per cent, far outstripping the growth in global commerce.

Speaking on the sidelines of the ASEAN Summit, Mr Purisima told Reuters in Manila, he thought that reaching the integration target "is going to be like a milestone where we should expect an acceleration of efforts to integrate."

ASEAN, whose 10 members include Singapore and Myanmar, aims to eliminate non-tariff barriers and remove obstacles to labour flows in the region.

Foreign direct investment in ASEAN also outpaced that of China last year, the Financial Secretary said.

Foreign investors "are now putting more money into the 10-member countries. This reflects the fact that they see, if the integration becomes a reality, ASEAN can fulfil its vision of being the hub of intra-Asia trade," said Mr Purisima, a certified public accountant.

He said the Philippines is working on its own challenges and inefficiencies, including creating a much-delayed national "single window" network that when linked with others in the region will allow faster processing of trade receipts and reduce smuggling, which depresses state revenue.  



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