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ASEAN, Japan boost commercial exchange

ASEAN, Japan boost commercial exchange


Secretary-General of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Kao Kim Hourn has said the bloc is looking to expand its single window initiative with Japan to boost two-way trade this year, marking the 50th anniversary of their bilateral dialogue relations.

Speaking at a seminar on ASEAN-Japan relations on February 13, Kao affirmed that in addition to the implementation of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), ASEAN looks forward to expanding its ASEAN Single Window (ASW) with Japan to facilitate trade in the new normal.

According to him, their two-way trade has grown strongly over the years, reaching 240.2 billion USD in 2021, up 17.2% compared to 2020 and exceeding pre-pandemic levels.

This result has made Japan the third largest trading partner of ASEAN. Among ASEAN’s dialogue partners, Japan is the fourth largest source of foreign direct investment.

ASEAN welcomes Japan’s intention to set up a comprehensive strategic partnership between the sides by the end of 2023, the official said.

The ASW, which allows all member states to perform faster and less-paper customs clearance, was deployed in 2019./.