US and ASEAN hold talks over strengthened trade ties

Industry News | | MIC Customs Solutions |

Representatives from the US and ASEAN have met to discuss new ways of strengthening trade ties between the regions.

The US government has held talks with the Association for Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to investigate new ways of creating healthier international trade links between the two regions.

Economic ministers and senior officials from the ten ASEAN countries met in California with high-level counterparts from the US and agreed on the introduction of a number of key initiatives that will help to create trade and economic opportunities, with a focus on policies to drive innovation and entrepreneurship.

Discussions encompassed the recently-concluded Trans-Pacific Partnership deal and saw ministers agree to launch a new series of US-ASEAN trade workshops to help ASEAN countries better understand the commitments they will have as a result of trade agreements such as this. 

They also discussed the recent announcement of US-ASEAN Connect, a new unified strategic vision for US economic engagement with the ASEAN region, which will include the establishment of dedicated ASEAN Connect hubs in Jakarta, Singapore and Bangkok.

Additionally, it was confirmed that a roadshow will be kicking off that will visit US businesses to discuss the Bay Area's competitive and innovative corporate ecosystem, and to highlight the opportunities created by the recent launch of the ASEAN Economic Community.

Michael Froman, the US trade representative, said: "Further deepening our ties to ASEAN is an important priority for the US, and the events this week - including the US-ASEAN Leaders Summit, the US-ASEAN Trade and Investment Framework Arrangement meeting and the ASEAN Roadshow in California - have highlighted the opportunities to promote jobs through enhanced trade and investment between us.

"We believe that today's discussions will propel our efforts to further our economic partnership, which holds significant promise."

The ASEAN bloc consists of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam. Collectively, it represents the US' fourth largest export market.