Jakarta, IO – ASEAN countries affirmed their commitment to strengthening economic growth, as well as promoting financial stability and integration in the ASEAN region, amidst the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This was the conclusion of the 6th ASEAN Finance Minister and Central Bank Governors’ Meeting (AFMGM) which was held virtually on 2 October 2020. In addition, at the meeting with the theme “Cohesive and Responsive ASEAN”, several other commitments were agreed upon, including:
1. Agree that extraordinary policy responses in the form of fiscal and monetary policies, financial support for the real and financial sectors, smooth flow of goods and services, as well as solidarity and cooperation are the keys to overcoming the impact of the pandemic and recovering the economy.
2. Strengthen the effectiveness of economic and financial surveillance in the region, and support the readiness of the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralization (CMIM) as an effective financial safety net in the region and an important component of the global financial safety net.
3. Encouraging wider intra-ASEAN trade and investment through the establishment of Qualified ASEAN Banks and increasing transparency, standardization and harmonization of regulations among SEAN countries to support financial integration in the region.
4. Support initiatives to use local currency in trade settlement, direct investment and other related activities such as income transactions and transfers, among ASEAN countries as part of efforts to increase the resilience of the region’s economy and financial system.
5. Welcoming the progress of cooperation in the field of infrastructure financing, including in the form of preparing several guidelines to encourage the expansion of private investor involvement, as well as supporting efforts to advance the sustainable finance agenda (sustainable financing) cohesively in all fields, be it banking, capital market, as well as insurance.
6. Support efforts to utilize digital financial services to increase financial inclusion in the region and increase cooperation in sharing information regarding handling cyber risk.