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35th ASEAN Summit: ASEAN Business and Investment Summit opens

The 18th ASEAN Business and Investment Summit (ABIS-2019) opened in Bangkok on November 2 under the theme of “Empowering ASEAN 4.0”.

ABIS is organised on a yearly basis by the private sector of the ASEAN chair’s country. This year, the event is co-hosted by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council and Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Commerce and the Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking.

Nearly 1,000 delegates are attending the two-day summit, including government leaders of ASEAN member states, ASEAN dialogue partners, representatives of private firms, civil society organisations and research institutes. Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha delivered an opening speech at the event.

Major topics discussed at the summit include digital infrastructure, digital connectivity, digital human resource development, and micro, small- and medium-sized digital enterprises (MSMEs) in the context of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (FIR).

ABIS-2019 serves as a venue for the public and private sectors of ASEAN to exchange views on three key issues of connecting and standardizing trade facilitation systems (FTS), preparation for the FIR, and sustainable development.

It is also an ideal platform for the private sector and stakeholders in ASEAN and the region to define, discuss and seek solutions to urgent problems affecting economic activities, investment attraction and business potential in the region./