The Chairman of Asean Bankers Association (ABA), has urged bankers in Asean to identify areas of mutual collaboration due to the changing global landscape, which presents significant new challenges and risks for Asia as a whole and Asean in particular.
The call was made by Javed Ahmad, who is also the Managing Director of Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam (BIBD) in his opening remark at the 19th Asean Banking Conference and the 42nd Asean Banking Council Meeting held from November 7 until 9 at the Sasana Kijang, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The theme of the conference, hosted by the Association of Banks in Malaysia, was laying the Foundation for one Asean Market – ‘Identifying and Prioritising Initiatives’.
According to a press statement from Asean Bankers Association, the Chairman of the Association of Bank in Malaysia, Dato’ Sri Abdul Wahid Omar, meanwhile echoed the same sentiments, given the fragile global economy and the challenges faced by the Eurozone. This was an opportune time to meet and discuss the fundamental values of having one Asean market. The region’s high powered consumer spending and economic strength will provide ample opportunities for the financial sector to flourish.
In the ceremony, Governor of Bank Negara Malaysia, Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Dr Teti Akhtar Aziz, gave an inspiring keynote speech. She commented that despite the recent global financial crisis, the drive for Asean to achieve the Asean Economic community (AEC) by 2015 was well supported by the prevailing strong foundations and the tremendous growth prospects for Asean in the medium to longer term.
She also mentioned that given the diverse nature of Asean economies, the integration model adopted for Asean has been one that focuses on strengthening preconditions through collective capacity building, which in turn helps to promote more market access among the economies in Asean, progressively reducing barriers to facilitate cross border trade, developing the market infrastructure and enabling an environment to promote efficient and effective intermediation of cross border financial flows and establishing the appropriate safeguards for financial system stability, reports Borneo Bulletin.
Following the conference, a meeting was held for the three permanent committees of the Asean banking Council: Cooperation in Finance, Investment and Trade and Asean Inter-Regional Relations and Banking Education. Each of these meetings was attended by representatives of the ABA members.
The 42″d Asean Banking Council Meeting held on November 9 endorsed the following, that committee on the cooperation in Finance, Investment and Trade will continue to identify regionally relevant and topical issues as well as initiate ideas to the promotion of Asean banking co-operation in the areas of finance, investment and trade; committee on Asean Inter-Regional Relations will continue to identify countries (in the form of study visits) which will allow Asean participants to share in the development/ advancements in the area of banking trade and finance; committee on Banking Education will start a working committee with the goal of standardising certification courses across Asean and continue to actively solicit resource persons to match training needs of member countries.
The 43rd Asean Banking Council Meeting will be held in November 2013 in Yangon, Myanmar and hosted by Myanmar Banks Association.
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