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ASEAN Officials Meet to Discuss Investment Policy Reviews and Outlook on Investment Policies in the Region

9 November 2019

Kuala Lumpur, November 2019 - Policy-makers from ministries in charge of investment, investment promotion agencies and other relevant investment-related government institutions in ASEAN Member States, staff members of the ASEAN Secretariat and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Secretariat, as well as experts from Australia and New Zealand, and various invited speakers and resource persons, convened in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from 6 – 8 November 2019 for a one-day Regional Forum on Investment Policy Reviews (IPRs) and a two-day Investment Policy Workshop for ASEAN Policymakers. The event provided a platform for discussing the findings and implementations of the IPRs conducted by the OECD in ASEAN Member States, as well as for updates on recent reforms and obtaining feedback from the private sector. 

Southeast Asia is one of the fastest growing regions in the world and has long been a magnet for international flows of foreign direct investment (FDI). ASEAN is now increasingly becoming the source of FDIs as well. The region owes its success to its continuous and progressive reform of investment policies as well as improvements in investment climates over time, thanks to the ASEAN economic integration as well as the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (AANZFTA). Given the dynamism of the changing world economy and technologies shaping global competition for FDIs and changing industries, ASEAN should remain vigilant and keep updated on the latest investment policy-making.

As stated by Datuk Bahria Mohd Tamil, Senior Director and Chief Negotiator for Malaysia’s AANZFTA, Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI), Malaysia, “As outlined in the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint 2025, the onus is on all ten ASEAN Member States to ensure a successfully integrated and dynamically cohesive region. In this manner, IPRs provide the necessary impetus for countries to work towards an ever-progressive investment regime that manages to be resilient, inclusive, people-oriented, and integrated with the global economy, thereby contributing to the common goal of shared prosperity.”  

At these events, officials from all AANZFTA Parties discussed their efforts to improve investment climates at the local and regional levels, while experts from the OECD and other invited speakers discussed further possible reforms and the impacts such reforms may have on FDI into and within the region. New tools for monitoring reforms, refining investment promotion approaches and measuring impact were also presented.

The Forum and Workshop were supported under the AANZFTA Economic Cooperation Support Program (AECSP) and organised by the ASEAN Secretariat and the OECD in collaboration with the Ministry of International Trade and Industry of Malaysia. The OECD IPRs in some ASEAN Member States were also supported under the AECSP and can be downloaded from the below links:

Investment Policy Review – Cambodia (2018)

Investment Policy Review – Viet Nam (2018)

Investment Policy Review – Lao PDR (2017)

Investment Policy Review – Philippines (2016)

Investment Policy Review – Myanmar (2014)

Investment Policy Review – Malaysia (2013)
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