The 16 th ASEAN finance ministers' meeting closed in Phnom Penh on Mar. 30, with an agreement to boost regional financial integration, to make the ASEAN Economic Community a reality by 2015.

A Vietnamese delegation led by Deputy Finance Minister Truong Chi Trung attended the event.

The participants said they believe that the regional economy will
maintain a growth rate of between 5.6 to 6.3 percent this year, even with uncertainties in the global business environment.

The rate was attributed to a robust domestic demand, sustainable macro-economic policies and the ongoing economic restructuring in some countries.

Regarding the roadmap for ASEAN Financial Integration, the participants were pleased with the positive development of the capital market and the liberalisation of capital and financial services.

The progress made in customs cooperation was also applauded, especially the pilot project to implement a One-Gate ASEAN mechanism and harmonising ASEAN tariffs.

On addressing the event, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen called on the assembled ministers to seek out new ways of ensuring trust in the market.

The ministers signed an amended ASEAN Customs Agreement to upgrade customs services across the region.

The one-day event saw the presence of the region’s finance ministers and representatives from several international organisations.-VNA