ASEAN Integration in Services

27 tháng 12. 2016

Implementing Agency: ASEAN Secretariat 
Time: December 2015


"Trade in services is one of the core fundamentals in ASEAN economic integration. The initiative formally started in 1995 through signing of the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Services (AFAS), which was two years after ASEAN launched the initiative to work towards ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) for trade in goods through the Agreement on Common Effective Preferential Tariff Scheme for the AFTA (CEPT) signed in 1993. AFAS provides the mandate for progressive negotiations on the liberalisation of trade in services, recognising that intra- ASEAN services liberalisation will strengthen the flow of trade and investment in the services sector among ASEAN Member States, and will eventually contribute to overall economic integration in the region.

AFAS is based closely on the provisions of the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), the first multilateral agreement on services which was concluded under the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations in 1994. Subsequent decisions were made to further strengthen the services liberalisation in ASEAN, while remaining consistent with the GATS provisions.

Free flow of services is an essential element in building the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), as envisaged to be realised in year 2020 by the ASEAN Heads of States/Governments through the Declaration of Bali Concord II issued in 2003. The subsequent decision at the 11th ASEAN Summit in December 2005 to accelerate the liberalisation of trade in services by 2015, re-affirms the seriousness of ASEAN to further integrate its services sector and deepen its economic integration process. In November 2007, ASEAN economic integration was taken another step further when Heads of State/Government, at the 13th ASEAN Summit on 20 November 2007 in Singapore, adopted the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Blueprint.

The AEC Blueprint aims to transform ASEAN into a single market and production base, a highly competitive economic region, a region of equitable economic development, and a region fully integrated into the global economy. In the context of trade in services, the Blueprint provides essential mandate for the subsequent liberalisation of trade in services in ASEAN, through specific actions, targets, and timelines to achieve free flow of services in ASEAN as part of the goal of the integrated single market and production base.

This publication marks the 4th edition of ASEAN Integration in Services. It aims to provide not only updated information on the latest ASEAN efforts and achievements in regional trade in services integration; but also with more details as data and information become more available.The following sections provide an overview of trade in services in ASEAN, the institutional processes in ASEAN for services liberalisation, the status and outcomes of the liberalisation under AFAS, development of initiatives related to Movement of Natural Persons, and latest update of ASEAN Free Trade Agreements involving Trade in Services."

This publishcation is attached here.