to Integrate Asia Bond Markets
The Star, Online
March 30, 2004
Finance Minister Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop has urged Asian countries
to develop harmonised standards and practices to integrate the current
fragmented national bond markets in the region. He said Asia should
integrate the more developed with the less efficient markets that
required capacity building. The region would not be able to reap
the full benefits of efficient and vibrant bond markets as long
as Asian bond markets remained fragmented, he told the Kuala Lumpur
International Bond Conference yesterday. “The risk is that
the region will be sidelined by global investors. In the financial
market, size and efficiency are critical factors in building liquidity
to attract international investors,'' he added.
here to read the full Article: http://biz.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2004/3/30/business/7652859&newspage=Search
Business Lobby Floats FTA Panel
The Japan Times
March 13, 2004
Japan Business Federation (Nippon Keidanren) proposed on March 12,
the creation of a strategy panel headed by Prime Minister Junichiro
Koizumi and a special ministerial post to promote economic collaboration
with East Asian economies, including the conclusion of free-trade
agreements. Nippon Keidanren, the nation's most powerful business
lobby, said Japan needs to forge economic pacts with other Asian
nations, including FTAs, as soon as possible. Japan recently launched
FTA negotiations with other Asian countries, including Malaysia,
the Philippines and South Korea.
here to read the full Article: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/getarticle.pl5?nb20040313a2.htm
Efforts Must for Asia
An Institute of Economic Growth (IEG) study of regional and preferential
trade agreements has called for stronger regional integration efforts
in the form of trade blocs in Asia. The study points out that it
is ironical that fast growth of intra regional trade in Asia has
not been followed by any regional integration in the form of trade
blocs. This is depriving Asia of a vast opportunity for trade creation
and improvement in the welfare of Asian countries which is likely
to have a positive effect on the welfare of other countries also.
"Preferential trading agreements and regional trade: implications
for Asia," the IEG working paper says that it is unfortunate
that there is no serious move in Asia to form a strong and genuine
free trade area covering the large region despite GATT and WTO rules
being biased toward regional trade arrangements and despite the
internal and external factors strongly favouring such a regional
here to read the full Report: http://ieg.nic.in/,
Working Papers, E 240 Ramesh Chand
Push for Deeper Regional Monetary Cooperation
The Business Times, Singapore Edition
March 2, 2004
this month, high-level government officials from the Asean+3 group
will report on a study that could have a profound effect on exchange
rate and monetary cooperation in East Asia.
the finance ministers decide to act on the findings of the study,
which has been largely kept under wraps since it was initiated last
year, it could mark the first step on a road to regional monetary
study, by what is known as the Asean+3 Research Group, is examining
a possible 'exchange rate arrangement' for East Asia and the need
for a 'regional financial architecture', according Daikichi Momma,
a senior official in the Japanese Finance Ministry's international
bureau. The plan could involve the evolution of the Chiang Mai network
of currency swaps into a regional monetary mechanism, he suggests.
swaps are bilateral agreements under which East Asian monetary authorities
plus Australia agree to support the individual countries they contract
with by offering them currency support in the event of a balance
of payments crisis, such as that which hit Asia in 1997.
Asean+3 study may recommend that these bilateral swaps be 'multi-lateralised'
into a kind of regional currency fund, according to Mr Momma.
the study - to be reviewed at the next meeting of the Asean+3 Research
Group consisting of research institutes from the six most advanced
Asean states plus Japan, China and South Korea - covers more aspects
than just the development of the Chiang Mai swaps network, a senior
source close to the Bank of Japan told BT.
also reviews possible exchange rate arrangements for East Asia.
here to read the full Article: http://newslink.asia1.com.sg/