This workstream aims to strengthen ASEC organisational capacity

The ASEAN Secretariat (ASEC) was established in February 1976 by the Foreign Ministers of ASEAN, and its basic function is to increase efficiency in the coordination of ASEAN and to facilitate more effective implementation of ASEAN projects and activities. With the ASEAN Community set for 2015, ASEC was given the additional task of coordinating the regional effort. In order to deliver these services to its stakeholders, ASEC needs to be highly-effective. AADCP II partners with ASEC to identify and implement strategic efforts to strengthen ASEC’s organisational capacity.

List of Projects

Strengthening ASEAN Secretariat Business Process and IT system: a Needs Assessment Study

Status: Completed. The project supports the ASEAN Secretariat (ASEC) in strengthening its corporate business processes through a study that will analyse the needs and assess the feasibility of establishing an integrated, transparent information technology automation mechanism. This project: i) analyse the existing business processes and IT system in ASEC, ii) conduct an assessment of ASEC’s current […]


Strengthening ASEAN Secretariat: Developing the ASEAN Secretariat Accounting Manual Based on IPSAS

Status: Completed. This project will support the ASEAN Secretariat (ASEC) in strengthening its current financial accounting and reporting policies and practices. ASEAN Member States have decided to adopt International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) for ASEC’s financial accounting and reporting as a key step to achieve high quality public sector financial reporting standards. This measure […]


Corporate Development Scoping Study

The entry into force of the ASEAN Charter in 2008 has had a significant effect on the roles and operations of ASEC. As the 2015 target date for the achievement of the ASEAN Community approaches, the number and range of activities to be undertaken will increase and intensify. This in turn will place increased demands […]



To strengthen ASEC’s overall M&E capacity and specifically capacity in monitoring progress towards the AEC establishment

One of the ASEAN Secretariat’s basic functions is to provide for greater efficiency in the coordination of ASEAN bodies and for more effective implementation of ASEAN projects and activities. With the ASEAN Community establishment set for 2015, the ASEAN Secretariat had been elevated from its basic function to carry an even broader mandate of initiating, coordinating and facilitating the community building agenda of ASEAN. It is therefore imperative that the ASEAN Secretariat has a strong M&E capacity to be able to accurately assess ASEAN’s progress in establishing the Community, and to utilise M&E results to inform future actions at the regional and national level.

AADCP II supports efforts to strengthen ASEC’s capacity to monitor and evaluate its overall performance in implementing projects and activities towards the Community establishment. This includes improvement to the current M&E practices within the Secretariat, as well as data generation and analysis for measuring progress specifically towards the establishment of the AEC.

List of Projects

Establishing the Mechanism to Enhance National Data Collection, Compilation and Dissemination for the ASEAN Community Progress Monitoring System (ACPMS)

Status: Ongoing The Roadmap for the ASEAN Community (2009-2015) comprised blueprints to guide the timely implementation of ASEAN’s regional integration agenda. Different mechanisms were utilised to monitor the progress of these integration efforts, including the Community Scorecards and other sector-specific monitoring and surveillance tools. The ASEAN Community Progress Monitoring System (ACPMS) is intended to complement the […]


Strengthening the ASEC Project Management Framework

Numerous ASEAN cooperation programs and projects have been undertaken or are underway to support the achievement of the goals and objectives in the three ASEAN Community Blueprints and the IAI Work Plan 2. ASEAN currently has over 20 multisectoral cooperation programs with its Dialogue Partners and Germany as well as over 380 projects that have […]


Project Management Training

This project is a follow-on activity from the AADCP II project proposal writing consultancy. That consultancy supported a two-day, hands-on proposal writing workshop for ASEC officers in November 2010 who were working with the PPMSU in the development of proposals for possible AADCP II support. Discussions with participants indicated a desire to receive additional training […]


Enhancing the ASEAN Community Progress Monitoring System

This project will produce a statistical report on the state and progress of the ASEAN Community in the achievement of its key societal outcomes based on the ASEAN Community Progress Monitoring System (ACPMS). It will serve as a tool for evidence or knowledge based decision-making and policy creation in the region. The report will complement […]


Facilitating Regional Dialogue on ASEAN Economic Community

Status: Completed. This project supports regional public dialogue among various stakeholders, as a measure to complement monitoring of the establishment of the AEC. It provides support for the ASEAN Economic Community Symposium series, which will be held annually from 2012 to 2014. The symposium series will facilitate dissemination of AEC monitoring results to a wider […]


AEC Integration Monitoring & Evaluation Capacity Building Program – Phase 1

Status: Completed This project supports the establishment of a monitoring and evaluation capacity in the Secretariat and in Member States for achieving the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) goals. As ASEAN nears the setting up of the AEC in 2015, regular monitoring and evaluation of progress is important. This project helps ASEAN carry out some important […]



This workstream will support ASEAN in implementing the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services by enhancing the capacity to assess, measure and better understand the economic importance of services. It will support the implementation of Mutual Recognition Arrangements and the mobility of skilled labour, especially within the tourism sector

Services are important industries for building growth and competitiveness in today’s open global economy. In most industrialised economies, services contribute to around 80 percent of GDP. In open economies, imports deliver low cost products and competitive exports generate income. As well as becoming important traded industries, services are also important inputs to other services and goods. For example, lower cost transport and telecommunications services reduce the costs of other products and increase competitiveness. For developing countries to continue to generate the growth necessary to reduce poverty and lift living standards, the services sector needs to grow and be globally competitive. Growth of services also helps increase employment opportunities for women, who are the majority in the tourism, retail, health and education services workforce. Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) also benefit from growth of services particularly in CLMV countries, as some services sectors (e.g. tourism, transport, distribution) create demand for goods and services produced by SMEs.

Services have been growing as a major contributor of GDP in the ASEAN region. It is estimated that approximately 50 percent of foreign direct investment in ASEAN Member States is in the services sector1 and it contributes 40 to 50 percent of GDP in ASEAN Member States2. ASEAN trade in services (both export and import) has been consistently strong. Between 1990 and 2007, services export grew at around 350%, import grew 450%. This caused a US$24 billion trade deficit in 20063. Improving the share of services in total balance of trade is important for boosting CLMV economies; it is currently accounting for close to 45% percent of Vietnam’s GDP4 and nearly 5.5 percent of Cambodia’s GDP5. The free flow of services is a key step in the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint’s goal to create an ASEAN single market and production base. ASEAN Member States signed the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services (AFAS) in 1995. Under the AFAS, seven packages of commitments have been negotiated and agreed upon to liberalise business services, environmental services, professional services, healthcare, construction, maritime transport, distribution, telecommunication, education and tourism.

AADCP II works together with the ASEAN Secretariat to further expand on these commitments, and provide capacity building and technical assistance to create an enabling environment for the implementation of commitments in the ASEAN Member States.

Citation and References

  1. “Sustained FDI Flows Dependent on Global Economic Recovery”, ASEAN Investment Report 2009, p.12.
  2. ASEAN Secretariat. Services. [online] Available at <> [Accessed 26 January 2012]
  3. Plummer, Michael G., and Siow, Yue Chia. eds., “Realizing the ASEAN Economic Community: a Comprehensive Assessment”. Institute of Southeast Asian Studiesas, East-West Center, 2009, p.11.
  4. World Bank. “Taking Stock: an Update in Vietnam’s Recent Economic Development”, prepared by the World Bank for the Annual Consultative Group meeting for Vietnam ,Ha Tinh, 8-9 June 2011, p.9. [online] Available at <> [Accessed 26 January 2012]
  5. World Bank Cambodia Country Office. “Cambodia: Recent Economic Development. Seventh Edition, February 2011”, 2011, p.22. Available at <> [Accessed 26 January 2012]

List of Projects

Development of the ASEAN Mutual Recognition Arrangement for Tourism Professionals (MRA-TP) Work Plan 2017-2020

This project will produce the ASEAN MRA-TP Work Plan 2017-2020, that will specify strategic actions, recommend the best approach in implementing those actions, and provide a mechanism for monitoring progress and make decisions throughout the Work Plan implementation.


Process refinement and training of ASEAN Tourism Master Trainers and Master Assessors

Status: Completed. This project aims to develop a pool of ASEAN Master Assessors and Trainers for Travel Agencies and Tour Operations divisions. The Project reviewed and updated existing toolboxes for Master Trainer and Master Assessor developed by the Project on Training of ASEAN Master Trainers and Master Assessor for Front Office, Food and Beverage Services and Food Production […]


Supporting the transition phase in establishing the Regional Secretariat for the Implementation of MRA on Tourism Professionals

Status: ongoing The ASEAN Tourism Ministers (ATM) signed the Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) on Tourism Professionals (TP) on 9 November 2012. This instrument aims to facilitate the mobility of tourism professionals within the region. In 2010, the ATM endorsed the MRA Follow-up Implementation Requirements which includes the Establishment of aRegional Secretariat that would promote implementation […]


Toolbox Development for Tourism Labour Divisions: Travel Agencies and Tour Operation

Status: Completed. This project aims to develop the third set of training toolboxes for the travel agencies and tour operations divisions. At the end of this project, there will be a complete set of 242 toolboxes for the various tourism divisions as required by the Common ASEAN Tourism Curriculum (CATC). The toolboxes contain resources/manuals that […]


Development of ASEAN Tourism Professional Registration System (ATPRS)

Status: completed The implementation of MRA on Tourism Professionals will result in the mutual recognition of tourism professionals based on certificates. In order to allow users, which may include tourism service providers, to access data of certified tourism professionals, a database facility needs to be established and maintained. The ATPRS is a web-based facility to register […]


Development of Implementation/Action Plans to Enhance Mobility of ASEAN Professionals on Accountancy Services

Status: Completed. Implementation of the Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs) is an important measure in achieving the free flow of services and skilled labour towards the AEC in 2015. The currently agreed Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) on accountancy services only provides the framework and procedures for Member States to work together to further develop bilateral or […]


Development of Implementation/Action Plans to Enhance Mobility of ASEAN Professionals on Surveying Services

Status: Completed. Implementation of the Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs) is an important measure in achieving the free flow of services and skilled labour towards the AEC in 2015. The currently agreed Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) on surveying services only provide the framework and procedures for Member States to work together to further develop bilateral or […]


Training of ASEAN Master Trainers and Assessors for Front Office, Food & Beverage Service and Food Production Divisions

Status: Completed. This project is a follow-up to the Toolbox Development for Front Office, F&B Service, and Food Production Divisions project which was completed in February 2014. The project is designed to provide training to master trainers and master assessors from each ASEAN Member State on the use of the specially designed training resources known […]


Gap Analysis on Implementation of MRA on Tourism Professionals

This project analyses the status of each ASEAN Member State in supporting the implementation of the MRA. It will identify gaps and opportunities for improving harmonisation of the qualification system applied by tourism training and education institutions in each ASEAN Member State, and recommend follow-up actions. It will also identify capacity building needs, particularly regulatory […]


Feasibility Study for the Establishment of a Regional Secretarial for Tourism Professionals

To oversee the implementation of MRA on Tourism Professionals, an ASEAN Tourism Professionals Monitoring Committee (ATPMC) was established in 2010. To support the ATPMC, a regional secretariat needs to be established. The regional secretariat will be responsible for managing the ASEAN Tourism Professional Registration System (ATPRS), including the ASEAN Qualifications Equivalent Matrix. This project aims […]


Training of ASEAN Master Trainers & Assessors for Housekeeping Division

Once the toolbox for housekeeping is completed, support will be required for the training of master trainers and master assessors for the housekeeping division to assist them on the use of the toolbox. The master trainers will then provide training in their respective countries, while the master assessors will take part in the national certification […]


Toolbox Development for Tourism Div.: Front Office, F&B Services, Food Production

This project aims to develop the second set of training toolboxes comprising of the three competencies in front office, food & beverage services and food production divisions. The toolboxes contain resources/manuals that will be directly used by tourism training and education institutions in ASEAN Member States in delivering standardised competency-based training under the MRA on […]


Free Flow of Skilled Labour Study

This project, completed in November 2010, was an initial effort to assess the situation regarding the free flow of skilled labour, a key element of the single market and production base component of the AEC Blueprint. The Study focused on skilled professional labour and produced a number of practical recommendations for possible follow-up activities to […]


Toolbox Development For Housekeeping Tourism Labour Division

Early efforts to support Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRA) in the tourism sector were supported by AADCP I with the development of: 1) the ASEAN Common Competency Standards for Tourism Professionals (ACCSTP), 2) the Common ASEAN Tourism Curriculum (CATC), and 3) Regional Qualifications Framework and Skills Recognition System (RQFSRS). The 13th ASEAN Tourism Ministers (ATM) Meeting […]


Handbook on Core Competencies & Domestic Regulation for Architecture, Engineering, Accounting and Surveying Services

For practitioners in key services sub-sectors such as architecture, engineering, accounting and surveying, there is a need to understand the regulatory environment they must operate in if they are to work outside of their home country. Key areas such as licensing, registration and operating procedures vary from country to country. Earlier work has collected such […]


ASEAN Awareness Strategy for Services Liberalisation

The Services Diagnostic and Needs Assessment Study conducted fieldwork in all ASEAN Member States. It noted that, to varying degrees, ASEAN Member State officials could improve their awareness on the importance of services in their economies and how liberalisation would lead to overall economic benefits. This increased awareness would bring about the development or enhancement […]


Improving Schedulling Commitments of ASEAN Framework Agreement of Services (AFAS)

The free flow of services is one of the elements for realising the AEC’s goal of establishing a single market and production base. Services liberalisation under the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services (AFAS) is undertaken through various rounds of negotiations. Liberalisation commitments are then translated into specific commitment schedules. These are not always consistent, do […]


Service Diagnostic & Needs Assesments

Based on the final report of the Services Design Study supported during the transition period, the Services Diagnostic and Needs Assessment Study began in September 2010 and was completed in November 2011. The study assessed needs across all ASEAN Member States in four of the five AEC priority liberalisation sectors: air transport, e-ASEAN, healthcare and […]


Services Scoping Study

This Design Study was concluded in December 2009. It included fieldwork undertaken in Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam as well as at ASEC in Jakarta. The study found that the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services commitments in liberalisation have been progressive and may not have reached unilateral liberalising levels in some instances. It identified a number […]


Enhancing Implementation of ASEAN Agreements

This project, completed in January 2011, examined the status of three key ASEAN Agreements – the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA), the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services (AFAS) and the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement (ACIA). Implementation of the commitments in these agreements is key to the achievement of AEC Blueprint goals of liberalisation of […]



This workstream aims to strengthen capacity of ASEAN Member States to fully implement the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement, promote foreign investment, and strengthen knowledge and understanding of investment trends and best practices in the region

ASEAN Member States seek to develop their capacity to implement the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement (ACIA), and promote Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) through well informed policy-making. This will assist the creation of an open environment for investment and realisation of the initiative to integrate ASEAN Member State economies.

Investment has become a significant driver of economic growth in ASEAN. A recent study noted that “Between 1990 and 1996, FDI inflows to ASEAN grew at an average annual rate of just over US$ 19 billion, while outflows grew at a rate of US$ 6.6 billion during the same period. Even after the economic crisis, FDI inflows continued to rise during 1997 to 2005 at an average annual rate of well over US$ 20 billion, while FDI outflows rose to an average annual rate of US$ 10 billion”1. In 2010, FDI in ASEAN has risen to more than US$74 billion, an increase of 95.6% compared to last year. Despite the region’s ability to attract substantive FDI, ASEAN as an integrated region still needs to further enhance its investment climate to face present challenges, including increasing competition from other emerging economies. This need has been recognised by the ASEAN Member States and addressed through the conclusion of ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement (ACIA) in 2009.

ACIA is a key agreement that supports the creation of a more open investment environment in ASEAN. However, not all ASEAN Member States, particularly CLMV economies are positioned to immediately benefit from the ACIA and take maximum advantage of the prospect of increased investment flows. Most ASEAN Member States, including CLMV economies, have made few formal commitments to reduce investment barriers. Significant restrictions still apply to foreign investment and domestic private investment in some industries. ASEAN Member State capacities in addressing these restrictions vary, and in cases, policy and regulations that do address restrictions are not publicly understood.

The AADCP II program is supporting implementation of ACIA through activities to promote and raise awareness of FDI opportunities in the region and activities to support a strong knowledge base on investment trends and best practices to help inform policy making in the region. A special focus will be given to activities that support the needs of the CLMV countries.

Citations and References

  1. Hattari, Rabin et al. Understanding Intra ASEAN FDI Inflows: Trends and Determinants and the Role of China and India. 2008. p.3. [online] Available at [Accessed 28 August 2011]

List of Projects

ASEAN at 50, a Historic Milestone for FDI and MNEs in ASEAN

This project produces the “ASEAN at 50, a Historic Milestone for FDIs and MNEs in ASEAN” publication, which will be launched as part of the 50th year anniversary of ASEAN. The publication examines and documents the region’s achievements in attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)/ Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) in the furtherance of economic development over the course of the last 50 years.


ASEAN Investment Report 2015-2019

Status: Ongoing The ASEAN Economics Ministers (AEM) and the ASEAN Investment Area Ministerial Council meetings in 1999 mandated the publication of an annual public investment report to provide information on trends and developments related to foreign direct investments (FDI) in ASEAN. The aim of these reports is to increase understanding of the investment regimes in […]


Promoting the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement (ACIA) – Phase 2

Status: ongoing Following successful completion of the Promoting ACIA project in 2013, ASEAN Member States agreed there is a need to hold more ACIA forums/events for investors and businesses, and seminars for the AMS to develop further awareness and understanding of ACIA. As such, this project undertakes further socialization activities for the ACIA across ASEAN […]


Development of the ASEAN Investment Website-Portal

Status: Ongoing To date, there is not yet a centralised integrated approach in marketing ASEAN as a single investment area. Most efforts to promote investment at the regional level have not been sustainable and tend to be one-off activities or publications. This project builds ASEAN brand as a single investment destination and attract investors through […]


Development of a Coordinating Committee on Investment Work Programme

The Coordinating Committee on Investment (CCI) is the main ASEAN sectoral body responsible for coordinating activities designed to meet AEC Blueprint goals with respect to enhancing investment. They meet frequently to review activities underway both regionally and within ASEAN Member States and to develop overall policies and approaches for future activities. The CCI functions well […]


Outsourcing Opportunities in ASEAN

Status: Completed Increased FDI flows can be achieved through a number of different approaches. One such approach is outsourcing: the contracting out by a firm of certain business functions, previously undertaken in-house, to an external provider. AADCP II will support efforts to increase outsourcing activities within ASEAN Member States. This project will consist of two […]


Best Practices for Investment Promotion and Facilitation in ASEAN

ASEAN Member States need to develop strategic FDI policies related to Investment Promotion and Facilitation (IPF) to enhance FDI growth as well as to compete with other emerging economies such as China and India. This project aims to enhance the competitiveness of each ASEAN Member State and ASEAN in attracting investment and other FDI by […]


Investment Trends and Prospects in ASEAN

A free and open regime is essential in enhancing ASEAN’s competitiveness in attracting foreign direct investment (FDI) as well as intra-ASEAN investment. Global FDI flows into ASEAN as a share of global FDI have been on the decline due to increasing competition from other countries and regions. However, intra-ASEAN investment has been increasing and ASEAN […]


Promoting the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement – Handbook (ACIA)

Status: Completed ACIA was signed by the ASEAN Economic Ministers (AEM) on 26 February 2009 and consolidated existing agreements: the ASEAN Investment Area (AIA) of 1998 and the ASEAN Agreement on the Promotion and Protection of Investments of 1987, also known as ASEAN Investment Guarantee Agreement (IGA). It is an enhanced agreement that encompasses four […]


ASEAN Investment Report 2013-2014

Establishing a single market and production base under the AEC Blueprint requires freer and enhanced flow of investment. ASEAN Member States (AMS) have undertaken specific measures to enhance FDI inflows both at the national and regional levels, particularly liberalisation and facilitation measures. Timely publication of information and analyses of investment flows and trends, current policies […]


Preparation of ASEAN Investment Report 2010-2011

Achievement of the ASEAN Economic Community goals related to developing a single market and production base, requires a freer and enhanced flow of investment. ASEAN Member States (AMS) need to take specific actions to enhance FDI, especially intra-ASEAN FDI. The development of policies and programs to enhance investment in AMS requires an understanding on the […]




This workstream aims to support the development and implementation of consumer protection laws and policies, strengthen the capacity of consumer protection institutions and deliver effective consumer education and awareness programs

ASEAN’s people centered approach is a reminder of the need to ensure that consumers are included in measures taken to achieve economic integration. Consumer protection in ASEAN Member States (AMSs) varies widely. In order to strengthen consumer protection in ASEAN, an ASEAN Committee on Consumer Protection (ACCP) was established in 2007. The ACCP adopted a strategic approach incorporating policy measures and detailed priority actions including the development of a (i) notification and information exchange mechanism by 2010; (ii) cross border consumer redress mechanism by 2015; and (iii) strategic roadmap for capacity building by 2010.

Consumer protection fosters fair competition and free flow of information in the marketplace. It increases consumer confidence, which ultimately boosts ASEAN economic activity. Strong consumer protections laws and policies help Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) who often are consumers of services and goods provided by larger operators. Measures which lift the standard of delivery to SME’s will benefit them. Women who are often tasked with purchasing household items and are major consumers of products that are typically covered by Consumer Protection laws will also benefit from enhanced consumer protection.

In 2010, AADCP II supported the preparation of the study, Road-mapping Capacity Building Needs in Consumer Protection in ASEAN, which took stock of each ASEAN Member States’ status in consumer protection, identified issues, and listed the necessary follow-on activities to strengthen consumer protection in each AMS. The study suggested that although the AMS have a different order of priorities for capacity development, there is broad agreement that capacity building efforts need to be focused on certain areas including: a) developing consumer policies, framework and laws; b) implementing, enforcing and monitoring consumer protection policies, framework and laws; c) establishing and managing effective redress mechanisms; and, d) developing, implementing and evaluating consumer protection programs including consumer education and awareness.

The AADCP II program works with the ASEAN Committee on Consumer Protection and other stakeholders in consumer protection to strengthen institutional capacity in implementing programs that put in place effective redress mechanism and increase consumer protection awareness. Priority will be given to ASEAN Member States that are in early stages of implementing national consumer protection laws.

List of Projects

Addressing Gaps in the establishment of an ASEAN Consumer Protection Framework Phase I

Status: Ongoing. This project supports implementation of the ASEAN Strategic Action Plan on Consumer Protection 2016-2025 (ASAPCP). It is in line with the need to develop a common ASEAN Consumer Protection Framework, which is Goal 1 in the ASAPCP. While this project will not support the establishment of the framework itself, it will address urgent […]


Developing the ASEAN Post-2015 Consumer Protection Action Plan: Meeting the Challenges of a People-Centered ASEAN Beyond 2015

Status: completed. Consumer protection in the ASEAN region is important for the smooth functioning of an integrated market. Consumer protection is seen to benefit consumers by ensuring that they have the right of access to adequate information to enable them to make informed choices about the products and services that they procure; there are adequate […]


Development of Public Awareness Models for Consumer Protection

Status: Completed. Consumer education can be done through both formal and non-formal mechanisms. In some countries, consumer education has been integrated into the formal school curriculum. However in most of the ASEAN Member States, consumer awareness and education programs are mainly implemented on a non-formal basis. Governmental and non-governmental organisations as well as private sector […]


Strengthening Technical Competency for Consumer Protection in ASEAN

Status: Completed. Under the UN Guidelines for Consumer Protection, governments should establish or maintain legal and administrative measures to enable consumers or, as appropriate, relevant organisations, to obtain redress through formal or informal procedures that are expeditious, fair, inexpensive and accessible. In particular, such procedures should take into account the needs of low-income consumers. Governments […]


Development of Complaint and Redress Mechanism Models in ASEAN

Status: Completed. Consumer protection requires consumers to have the ability to right the wrongs or to prevent future abuses. This requires access to an effective redress and complaint mechanism. According to data collected through the Road-mapping Capacity Building Needs in Consumer Protection in ASEAN project, only a handful of ASEAN Member States have put in […]


Road-mapping Capacity Building Needs in Consumer Protection in ASEAN

Status: Completed. This project focuses on identifying areas in ASEAN Member States that need to be strengthened in terms of the planning, development and implementation of consumer protection programs and the preparation of a capacity building roadmap. Best practices of those ASEAN Member States with consumer protection laws in place and related initiatives were compiled […]


Supporting Research & Dialogue on Consumer Protection

Status: completed. As mandated by the ASEAN Economic Ministers, Senior Economic Officials and the Committee of the Whole, there is a need to develop closer coordination among various sectoral bodies of ASEAN. The ASEAN Committee on Consumer Protection (ACCP) is of the view that interaction with other ASEAN sectoral committees is essential to the work of […]



This workstream will support the region in developing and standardising ASEAN agricultural practices in order to increase product marketability and access and enhance international competitiveness; and support ASEAN to establish common positions and approaches to strengthen regional standing in international for a related to agriculture, food and forestry

The agriculture, food and forestry sector has been the backbone of the ASEAN economy and is a priority sector of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Blueprint. ASEAN cooperation in food, agriculture and forestry is focused on food security, food handling, crops, livestock, fisheries, agricultural training and extension, agricultural cooperatives, forestry and joint cooperation in agriculture and the forest products promotion scheme.

Agriculture has significant socioeconomic implications for ASEAN. No less than 45 percent of the 524 million people of ASEAN still depend on agriculture for their livelihood. This is particularly significant for CLMV countries where over a third of the work force is engaged in agriculture, up to 72.3 percent in Cambodia in 201017.

Agriculture remains a significant source of growth for the national economies as a provider of investment opportunities for the private sector and a prime driver of agricultural related industries and the rural non-farm economy. In 2010, agriculture value added to the economy (as a percentage of total value) of ASEAN Member States ranged from 0.8 percent for Brunei to as high as 36.4 percent for Myanmar18. Improving agricultural productivity and competitiveness of agricultural products can increase the prospects and income of the ASEAN people.

For the period 2003-2005, women farmers comprised a significant proportion of the total agricultural labour force in most countries, ranging from 24.5 percent in the Philippines to 55.4 percent in Cambodia19. Increased effectiveness and efficiency will reduce the load of work for women farmers, and farmers in general. As farmers and rural communities prosper, SMEs will also benefit from increased demand for supplies and support for local industries. Rapidly expanding domestic and global markets coupled with institutional innovations in markets and revolutions in biotechnology and information technology offer opportunities to use agriculture to promote development. However, seizing the opportunities requires the will to move forward with reforms that improve the governance of agriculture.

Efforts to enhance cooperation and unity among ASEAN Member States and build consistency in agriculture practices and products must be supported. This will help bolster ASEAN’s position in international negotiations and increase ASEAN product marketability and access.

Citations and References

17. Asian Development Bank (2011). Key Indicators for Asia and the Pacific 2011 18. Ibid 19. World Bank (2007). World Development Report 2008: Agriculture for Development

List of Projects

Study on Mutual Recognition Models for the ASEAN Agricultural Best Practices

Status: Completed The ASEAN Ministers of Agriculture and Forestry has endorsed the ASEAN Agricultural Best Practices, which consist of Good Agriculture Practices for Fruits and Vegetables (endorsed in 2006), Good Animal Husbandry Practices for Broilers and Layers (endorsed in 2014) and the Good Aquaculture Practices for Food Fish (endorsed in 2014) as guidelines to improve […]


Strengthening ASEAN Mechanisms for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation and the Role of Conservation, Sustainable Management of Forests And Enhancement of Forest Carbon Stocks in Developing Countries (REDD-plus)

Mitigation efforts under a new international agreement on climate change are expected to include the REDD-plus mechanism. REDD-plus intends to use economic incentives with developing countries to prevent forest land conversion, deforestation and forest degradation. This will enhance the carbon absorption capacity needed to combat global warming. As developing countries stand to benefit from a […]


Establishment of ASEAN Good Animal Husbandry Practices (ASEAN GAHP)

Status: Closed. This project guides the establishment, adoption and implementation of a set of ASEAN-wide animal husbandry practices. It supported the development of an ASEAN GAHP and country-specific programs to boost its widespread acceptance and utilisation among the ASEAN Member States. Best practices and lessons learned by countries with their national GAHP was used in the formulation […]


Global Recognition of Quality Assurance Systems for ASEAN Fruits and Vegetables (ASEAN GAP)

Status: Ongoing This project takes off from two previous AADCP I initiatives which produced the ASEAN GAP Standard and the ASEAN GAP Strategic Plan. Year 1 of the project will support a scoping and needs assessment study regarding each ASEAN Member States’ situation regarding the ASEAN GAP and develop an implementation mechanism to operationalise the […]


Establishment of ASEAN Good Aquaculture Practices (ASEAN GAqP)

Status: Ongoing In its initial year, this project generated an inventory and review of existing aquaculture standards, regulations and related practices in various ASEAN Member States. It also included an identification of obstacles and bottlenecks in the development and implementation of GAqP especially in the CLMV countries. Through this project, a common ASEAN GAqP based on […]



Connectivity is a vital component in regional integration efforts. It is a cross-sectoral agenda that brings people, goods, services and capital together, boosting the cohesiveness and competitiveness of the region as a whole. With the rise of other emerging economies and the evolving regional architecture, connectivity is a key factor in enhancing the competitiveness and robustness of ASEAN. It also helps narrow the development gap among ASEAN Member States, by improving access to markets and supporting the development of SMEs in the less-developed countries.

Recognising the need to define a consistent and coherent approach to enhancing ASEAN Connectivity, a Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity (MPAC) was adopted by ASEAN Leaders in October 2010. The MPAC is a strategic document that lays out the goals and objectives of ASEAN Connectivity and a plan of action to enhance physical connectivity, institutional connectivity and people-to-people connectivity. The MPAC encompasses strategies and key actions that complement the three ASEAN Community Blueprints, providing a framework of support for the establishment of ASEAN Community by 2015.

Enhancing ASEAN Connectivity requires support and participation from a broad range of stakeholders. This is an opportunity and a challenge at the same time, requiring a strategic and collaborative approach by the ASEAN Connectivity Coordinating Committee (ACCC) and the ASEAN Secretariat’s Connectivity Division. A clear and concerted effort will strongly improve the chance of successful implementation of MPAC .

AADCP II provides support in developing communication strategies along with tools to increase awareness and understanding of the various stakeholders on connectivity. The program also helps in enhancing the monitoring and evaluation system of the MPAC as well as strengthening coordination mechanism for financing MPAC and supporting the implementation of selected priority projects identified in the Master Plan.

List of Projects

Study to Advance Sustainable Urbanisation in ASEAN

This project will define and undertake scoping of cooperation for sustainable urbanisation in ASEAN, specifically identifying prioritised areas of work related to sustainable urbanisation that can quickly yield an agreed regional outcome.  It will take stock of various initiatives, and share results and lessons learned from relevant past and current regional, national and sub-national initiatives.


Establishing the Initial Rolling Priority Pipeline List of Potential ASEAN Infrastructure Projects and Conduct of Pre-Feasibility Studies

This project develops a rolling priority pipeline of ASEAN infrastructure projects. It will help ASEAN Member States prioritize regional infrastructure projects, prepare and identify the most appropriate method of financing such projects.


Study on Establishing an ASEAN Telecommunications Single Market

Status: ongoing This project will identify and recommend possible pathways and a roadmap to support the establishment of an ASEAN telecommunications single market, which is part of the Master Plan for ASEAN Connectivity. It will enable stakeholders of the ASEAN telecommunications industry to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the global, regional, the ASEAN […]


Formulation of Post-2015 Agenda for ASEAN Connectivity

Status: Completed. At the 25th ASEAN Summit in Nay Pyi Taw in November 2014, ASEAN Leaders tasked the ACCC to undertake a comprehensive review of the implementation of the MPAC and formulate a Post-2015 agenda for ASEAN Connectivity. The Post-2015 agenda for ASEAN Connectivity will provide ACCC with strategic directions on collaborating with the various […]


Development Prospects for the ASEAN Power Sector

Status: Completed South East Asia’s electricity consumption will increase significantly over the coming decades as forecasted by the International Energy Agency (IEA). If electricity supply continues to rely heavily on fossil fuels, this will put increasing pressure on the environment as well as national and global resources. Combined, the existing and planned policy and regulatory […]


ASEAN Public-Private Partnership (PPP Program)

Status : Completed The demand for infrastructure is increasing rapidly as the ASEAN region copes with urbanization, high rates of growth, and the push for greater regional integration and connectivity. While the drivers for infrastructure investments vary from country to country, the overall financing gap remains wide. Already overstretched public finances, with limited scope for expanding […]


Development of ASEAN Connectivity Digital Content

Status: ongoing Effective outreach and communications strategies to ASEAN stakeholders are essential to translate ASEAN’s visions and initiatives of Connectivity into actions and benefits to ASEAN peoples. As online communities increase in size, number, and character, it is crucial for ASEAN to recognise the growing importance of these new communications channels. Understanding how and why these […]


Enhancing ASEAN Connectivity Monitoring and Evaluation

Status: Completed. This project aims to enhance the existing ASEAN Connectivity Implementation Matrix/Scorecard, which will be used as a tool for the ASEAN Connectivity Coordinating Committee (ACCC) to monitor and evaluate the progress as well as impact of the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity (MPAC) implementation. The project will enable the ACCC to provide evidence-based information […]


Strengthening Communication on ASEAN Connectivity

Status: Completed. ASEAN Connectivity (MPAC), which outlines plans of action for increasing physical, institutional and people-to-people connectivity in the region, was adopted by the ASEAN Leaders in 2010. To ensure synergistic implementation of the MPAC by various related ASEAN Sectoral Bodies and Working Groups, related divisions in the ASEAN Secretariat (ASEC) and relevant line ministries […]



ASEAN financial markets have been growing in the last few years, particularly in the larger economies. Nevertheless regional financial integration is still limited, with significant variations existing in key financial services amongst the AMS. Regional financial integration is crucial to finance economic growth across the region. An integrated financial system will improve the region’s competitiveness and financial stability, protecting it against global financial volatility. Financial integration is a crucial step towards achieving the ASEAN Economic Integration.

Currently, there has been minimal effort focused on deepening integration in the financial sector, and no coherent and targeted financial market development initiatives. A well-developed strategy is required to ensure that financial integration benefits all AMS, not only the ones with strong institutions and developed financial markets, but also the lesser developed ones. Financial integration can bring adverse impact particularly to the weaker economies; higher degree of capital flow concentration and misallocation can disrupt macroeconomic stability and growth in the region.

In 2003, ASEAN have adopted the Roadmap for Monetary and Financial Integration of ASEAN that lays out concrete steps towards financial market integration in the region. Among the key initiatives within the Roadmap is the capital market development which aims to build capacity and lay the long-term infrastructure for development of ASEAN capital markets, with a long-term goal of achieving greater cross-border collaboration, linkages and harmonization between the various capital markets in the region. AADCP II is supporting capital market development by supporting ASEAN in deepening understanding of capital market development in AMS and progress in capital market integration, and identifying approach and strategies to facilitate and expedite capital market integration in ASEAN.

List of Projects

Capacity Building for ASEAN Financial Integration Framework – Phase II

Status: Completed This project aims to strengthen the capacity of Central Banks/Monetary Authority from certain ASEAN member states to implement strategies and plans to achieve the objectives of financial integration under the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The project comprises a series of customised learning programmes for BCLMV following the ASEAN Banking Integration Framework Learning Roadmap (ALR) […]


Capacity Building for ASEAN Financial Integration Framework

Status: Completed This project aimed to strengthen the capacity of Central Banks/Monetary Authority from certain ASEAN member states to implement strategies and plans to achieve the objectives of financial integration under the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The project was comprised of a series of customised learning programmes for BCLMV focusing on the following topics: Bank […]


Assessment of ASEAN Capital Market Integration

Status : Completed Within the AEC Blueprint, strengthening ASEAN capital market development and integration is part of the effort to establish ASEAN as a single market and production base by 2015. The development of deep, liquid and efficient capital markets will enable the ASEAN region to channel its huge savings into productive investments and diversify […]



This workstream aims to support cross-cutting areas within the AEC establishment and strengthen collaboration among the various ASEC divisions and ASEAN sectoral bodies and working groups working across the cross-cutting areas

AADCP II support to the establishment of AEC falls under four main workstreams: investment, services, consumer protection and agriculture. There are some activities that span across a number of the workstreams. These cross cutting issues often underpin or are complementary to work that is progressing in the workstreams.

The focus areas under this workstream currently consist of support to regulatory reform and narrowing the development gap in ASEAN.

List of Projects

Work Planning Assistance for the Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI)

Status: Ongoing The Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI) provides a policy framework to support the participation of ASEAN’s newer member states (Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Viet Nam or CLMV) in the ASEAN integration process. The IAI Work Plan II (2009-2015) currently being implemented reflects key programme areas under the three ASEAN Community Blueprints. The […]


Mid-Term Review of the Implementation of the IAI Work Plan II for Equitable Economic Development and Narrowing the Development Gap

Status: Completed The IAI Work Plan II (2009 – 2015) is now in its fourth year of implementation. With 2015 approaching, there is a need to review the Work Plan to identify future improvements and ensure that it continues to serve as a key strategic framework for NDG and EED, which intends to reduce poverty […]


Narrowing the Development Gap Book

Status: Completed This project produced a high quality book containing clear analysis of ASEAN Narrowing the Development Gap (NDG) issues. The work was aimed at ASEAN policy makers and advisers involved in decision making on NDG initiatives. The project’s objective was to provide ASEAN policy makers and implementers a source of timely and clear analysis on key […]


ASEAN Regulatory Reform Agenda

Status : Closed. Regulations are a fundamental tool of government and an integral part of a well-functioning economy. Reform in regulations may be necessary in order to reduce business costs, enhance competition and innovation, and improve productivity. This requires a multi-disciplinary approach and close cooperation between and among all levels (sub-regional and national) of stakeholder […]


Logistics Scoping Study

Status: Completed The creation of a single market and production base for ASEAN encompasses a wide range of planned measures under the AEC Blueprint. These include the free flow of goods, services, investment, skilled labour and freer flow of capital. With such a wide range of possible activities, it was agreed by AusAID and ASEC […]