The sixth meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Central Bank Governors began in Nha Trang City in the central province of Khanh Hoa on April 7.

The meeting, chaired by the governor of the State Bank of Vietnam , Nguyen Van Giau, attracted the Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Naoyuki Shinohara, as well as the governors and representatives of the 10 central banks within ASEAN.

The participants discussed global and regional economic prospects and the challenges faced by central banks in ASEAN countries during the post-crisis period.

Top of the agenda was the carrying out of the ASEAN Financial and Monetary Integration Roadmap, cooperation between central banks as well as improving the use of local currencies for payment within the bloc. Financial and banking cooperation between ASEAN and its three dialogue partners, China, Japan and the Republic of Korea (ASEAN + 3) was also discussed.

The meeting reviewed the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Scorecard, which was created to supervise the implementation and fulfillment of targets set out in the overall plan.

According to the ASEAN Secretariat’s latest report, the results from the AEC Scorecard in 2008 and 2009 showed that over 73 percent of targets in the overall plan had been reached.

The meeting also approved a proposal to set up a working group on a regional payment system to speed up the harmonisation of payment standards and systems within the region and facilitate the circulation of capital and payments between regional countries.

Regarding the ASEAN+3 financial cooperation, the countries concerned pledged to contribute 120 billion USD to support the central banks of member countries under the Chiang Mai Initiative on Multilateralisation (CMIM) to address their difficulties when balancing payments and ensure macro economic and monetary stability in each nation.

As the ASEAN Chair in 2010, Vietnam will continue, together with China, to co-chair the CMIM to put it into action at the earliest possible time and reach the targets set when agreement came into effect on March 24, 2010./.