ASEAN Business Advisory Council Calls For Increased Cooperation

The ASEAN Business Advisory Council and other business advisory groups are calling on the leaders in the ASEAN regional bloc to work on a coordinated, sustainable, and inclusive economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

During a High-Level Dialogue on ASEAN Post-Pandemic Recovery organised by the ASEAN Secretariat at the end of July, ASEAN BAC and its partner Joint Business Councils (JBC) and sector champions submitted a package of recommendations for recovery in ASEAN.

“What we have submitted to the Leaders is a package of short-term proposals to facilitate coordinated, confidence- building mechanisms as we gradually re-open our economies. And as we re-open, we’ve also put in a parallel track that would seize the opportunity for a smart and solid take off towards sustainable and inclusive economic recovery,” said Khun Arin Jira, Chair of ASEAN BAC Thailand.

The ASEAN Business Advisory Council urges ASEAN to create a High Level Special Commission (HSLC) that would work on the recommendations with support from the proposed ASEAN Special Business Advisory Board to undertake sweeping economic reforms.

“The HSLC should also fast track long-delayed committed economic reforms – impacting on trade facilitation, connectivity, financial services, investments, digital transformation, support for MSMEs, among others, under the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint 2025,” Chris Humphrey, Executive Director of the EU ASEAN Business Council, said in a statement.

The private sector is committed to be a partner for ASEAN on the road to recovery from the pandemic.

“We hope to see bold leadership from the ASEAN Chair and the rest of the ASEAN Leaders. The private sector reiterates its commitment to be of help and be a genuine partner. We stand ready to work with ASEAN for a sustainable and rising post-COVID growth path,” Ambassador Mike Michalak from the US-ASEAN Business Council said.