The ASEAN Secretariat and Asian Development Bank (ADB) jointly organised a seminar on International Trade in Goods and Services Statistics in Manila, the Philippines from April 14 to 16.

It was intended to provide practical international guidance in addressing data compilation issues involving multinational goods and services trading.

The increasing globalisation of trade and outsourcing has enabled widened interconnections within Asian countries through cross-border economic transactions. Due to increasingly globalised production, goods and services transactions have become more complicated.

The availability of timely, comparable and relevant statistics on trade in goods, services and investments is crucial within the ASEAN to design policies, negotiate regional agreements and monitor the impact of integration through the formation of the ASEAN Economic Community.

Delegates from ten ASEAN member states and several Asian countries to the seminar stressed the necessity of collaboration and coordination among national statistics agencies to facilitate effective implementation of agreed-upon international standards on data compilation.

A forum on the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement (ACIA) was also held in Jakarta, Indonesia between April 15 and 16.

Themed “Transforming Investment in ASEAN through ACIA”, the forum focused the discussion on the salient features of ACIA and its potential benefits to Indonesia and the region. It also provided a platform for businesses from Indonesia and third party countries to exchange experience in investing in the ASEAN.-VNA