ASEAN, Canada target doubling trade hinh anh 1Ministers at the fourth ASEAN-Canada Consultations (Source: VNA)
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and Canada set a target to double the current 19 billion CAD (13.2 billion USD) in bilateral trade during the fourth ASEAN-Canada consultations in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on August 25.

At the meeting, ASEAN and Canadian economic ministers expressed their satisfaction with the implementation of the 2014-2015 action plan for the two sides’ Joint Declaration on Trade and Investment (JDTI) through senior dialogues, trade and investment promotion activities and the involvement of Canadian enterprises in events and fairs in ASEAN.

They approved another action plan for 2016-2020 to intensify bilateral economic cooperation with a focus on small- and medium-sized enterprises, and share information between Canada’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) network with ASEAN CSR experts as well as information relating to energy, aviation, agriculture, oil and gas, information technology and infrastructure.

In 2014, trade reached 13.2 billion USD, up 10.9 percent against the previous year. Canada was the seventh largest investor in ASEAN with 1.3 billion USD.

On the same day at the fourth ASEAN-Russia consultations, economic ministers appreciated measures to further enhance bilateral economic ties through the implementation of the ASEAN-Russia trade and investment cooperation programme with a focus on tourism, energy, farm produce and technology.

They expressed their delight at the growth of bilateral trade with total turnover reaching 22.5 billion USD last year, an annual rise of 13 percent. ASEAN exports made up 5.4 billion USD of the total, up 3.3 percent. Russia was ASEAN’s eighth biggest trade partner in the year.

To deepen the ties, the ministers approved a post-2015 trade and investment cooperation programme in line with the ASEAN-Russia trade and investment cooperation road map adopted on October 12, 2012.

They also welcomed a list of 57 Russian projects to strengthen economic cooperation in the private sector.

At the consultation meeting between ASEAN economic ministers with the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (BAC), participating ministers appreciated BAC proposals on the post-2015 agenda, saying they will help intensify connectivity in financial service, reduce or eliminate non-tariff barriers, facilitate the travel of experts and skilled labourers and design a common private sector assessment system beyond 2015.

They also revealed that the ASEAN young entrepreneur council will debut in November.-VNA