AEC - WILL ASEAN GET THERE IN TIME?
Jointly sponsored by the Thai Journalist Association and the FCCT
7pm, Wednesday 25 February, 2015
TJA and FCCT Members: Free; Non-members 350 Baht
On 31 December this year the ten member states of ASEAN are scheduled to make the greatest step forward since the association's founding in 1967, with the establishment of an ASEAN Economic Community.
In theory we should start seeing greater freedom of movement for labour between member states, freer trade in goods and services, and a boom in investment, as companies see the advantages of single production bases for a market of 600 million people.
In practice, integration is proceeding very slowly, and ASEAN is missing many of its own targets. Even in switched-on Singapore 40 percent of companies say they know nothing about AEC.
So what exactly is going to happen on New Year's Day, 2016?
The FCCT has put together an outstanding panel to discuss this momentous ambition.
Dr. Narongchai Akrasanee is the Minister of Energy, and one of the most infuential economic advisors to the current government. He has been an advisor to several previous Prime Ministers, and has a long and varied career in the corporate world.
Ambassador Lutfi Rauf has been the Ambassador for the Republic of Indonesia in Thailand since 2012. He is a career diplomat who fomerly served as Indonesian Ambassador in Slovakia.
Dr Suthad Setboonsarng has spent much of his career working within ASEAN, or advising ASEAN member states. He has also had a distinguished academic career, and served as special envoy to the Thai government on trade. He sits on the boardof BANPU, one of Thailand's biggest energy companies.
Mr Apichai Sunchindah is an independent development consultant who has worked for many years on ASEAN issues, is a former Executive Director of the ASEAN Foundation, and one of the most articulate and passionate exponents of greater integration in SE Asia.
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