The World Bank will provide advisory services to ASEAN to strengthen its capacity to monitor progress towards achieving the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015.

To this effect, an agreement on the AEC Monitoring and Evaluation Capacity Building Programme (AECMEP) was recently signed in Jakarta by the ASEAN Secretariat and the East Asia and Pacific Region of the WB.

According to the ASEAN Secretariat’s May 16 press release, the AECMEP is also financed by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) through the support of the ASEAN Australia Development Cooperation Programme Phase II.

With the AECMEP, ASEAN will embark on systematic monitoring of the region’s integration initiatives to realise the AEC by 2015.

Under the agreement, the World Bank will support the ASEAN Secretariat and member states to prepare joint ASEAN-WB Integration Monitoring Reports, ASEAN Services Integration reports, collect and store policy data, and organise technical workshops on activities where officials from all ASEAN countries will participate.

This programme was presented and endorsed by ASEAN Senior Economic Officials in January, 2012.