South East Asian (ASEAN) Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, along with China, Japan, and South Korea, agreed on a preliminary framework to strengthen the regional currency swap agreements. The deal aims to avoid over reliance on the US dollar. The meeting (held in May 2) centered on strengthening the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralization scheme, a multilateral currency swap arrangement among the 13 member states. They also reaffirmed to uphold the rules-based multilateral trading system and open regionalism, while resisting all forms of protectionism. The ASEAN+3 considered that despite a more challenging global environment, the region continues to be a key driver of global economic growth.
Asian Development Bank (ADB) calculated that regional integration supporting trade and foreign direct investment (FDI) increased to 47% and 51% respectively, in 2017. But the tourism declined to 73%. ADB predicted that there‚Äôs economic growth deceleration. ASEAN+3 economic growth this year grow 4.6%, lower than last year’s 4.7%.