Asean Morning News Roundup February 8

Asean Morning News Roundup February 8

The Asean Morning News Roundup presents a selection of reports  on what has been happening overnight and this morning around the Asean Economic Community (AEC).


Asean morning newsAsean

Compiled by AEC News Today    @aecnewstoday


Davao City to host Asean meetings on migrant workers, finance integration
The 10 member-nations of the Asean are set to discuss the fate of their migrant workers, a major issue common to Asean members highly dependent on foreign remittances and finance integration, as the 10 members further converge into a single economy.
– BusinessMirror

ASEAN Automotive Aftermarket to Grow at 9.6% CAGR through 2026
In Future Market Insights’ market report titled, “Automotive Aftermarket: ASEAN Industry Analysis and Opportunity Assessment, 2016-2026”, poor road infrastructure and extended vehicle life have been identified as profitable factors for the growth of the automotive aftermarket in ASEAN.
– SAT PR News

Indonesia told to cooperate with ASEAN peers
Indonesia should increase its higher education learning competitiveness index by improving synergy with other ASEAN countries.
– The Jakarta Post


Cambodia morning newsCambodia

Compiled by Leakhena Khat    @leakhenakhat


US$158 million to develop agriculture
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) jointly agreed yesterday in an agreement to earmark US$158 million as support to the kingdom’s Agricultural Strategic Development Plan.
Khmer Times 

JICA study on urban railway
The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will conduct a feasibility study on building an urban railway in Phnom Penh, with the aim of developing a master plan to reduce traffic congestion in the capital.
Khmer Times 

Insurers chart a growth path
Cambodia’s insurance industry saw impressive growth last year as general insurance continued to make positive strides, while life insurance accounted for the largest upswing by percentage, according to an annual report by the Insurance Association of Cambodia (IAC).
The Phnom Penh Post 

US Deporting Over 30 Cambodians, Despite Government Appeals
Cambodia reiterated its wish to renegotiate how its citizens are deported from the U.S. on Tuesday as it emerged that dozens more Cambodian nationals were being sent to the country.
The Cambodia Daily (paywall)

Japan ‘sex traffickers’ charged
Three suspects arrested on Saturday for trafficking women into sex slavery in Japan were all charged yesterday for their alleged involvement in the scheme, which one victim yesterday said had left her “deeply emotionally harmed”.
The Phnom Penh Post

Newborn care still a concern
Although infant mortality rates have dropped dramatically over the past 15 years, a new report in the journal Healthcare has identified significant shortcomings in newborn care in Cambodia.
The Phnom Penh Post

Millennials seek unique experiences
Brand loyalty is a relatively weak concept among young Cambodian consumers, who are more preoccupied with searching out new shops, brands and products that provide a personalised experience, according to a new study by global market research firm Kantar TNS.
The Phnom Penh Post

Second call for rice exports
The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) is calling on rice millers to apply for a second round of quality checks for exports to China after only 28 local rice mills, out of 60 which applied for inspection in the first round, passed last year.
Khmer Times 


Indonesia morning newsIndonesia

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat


Indonesia told to cooperate with ASEAN peers
Indonesia should increase its higher education learning competitiveness index by improving synergy with other Asean countries. “We have to be innovative and open to change if we want to move forward. Indonesia should increase its competitiveness by working with other Asean countries considering that we are a regional body,” said Suyatno, chairman of Indonesian Rectors’ Forum.
— The Jakarta Post

Indonesia back into export to support growth in 2017
Globally praised for its economic resilience against a weakening global market over the past five years, Indonesia must recalibrate away from domestic consumption to global trade this year to profit from the recovery in commodity prices.
— The Jakarta Post

BR to bring 90 more coaches from Indonesia
Indonesian state-owned railway manufacturer PT Industri Kereta Api (INKA) is preparing to produce 340 railway carriages for exporting to Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. “The process is now underway.
— The Asian Age


Lao PDR morning newsLao PDR

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee


VN, Laos look to boost sustainable growth
Party General Secretary Nguyễn Phú Trọng said yesterday that Việt Nam and Laos should identify concrete measures to ensure quality and progress of Vietnamese projects in Laos, and boost sustainable growth of economic ties.
– Viet Nam News

Work progresses on Vientiane airport
Vientiane airport’s expansion project is progressing as scheduled with officials saying it should be completed by early 2018
— TTR Weekly

Ministry to closely monitor agri-business
The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry will this year closely monitor domestic and foreign investment in this sector as it believes that many companies have not implemented the agreements made or complied with stipulated feasibility study methods.
— Vientiane Times Newspaper

New regulations restrict use of postal services
The Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications in cooperation with four other ministries and the Bank of the Lao PDR recently approved a decision on postal service prohibitions.
— Vientiane Times

Dengue Fever Already at Epidemic Level in Laos in 2017
Minister of Health, Associate Professor Dr Bounkong Syhavong chaired the annual National Dengue Review Meeting organized by the Department of Communicable Disease Control (DCDC) and Center for Malaria Parasitology and Entomology (CMPE), Ministry of Health. Dengue activities in MOH are also supported by the National Centre for Laboratory and Epidemiology (NCLE), Department of Health Care (DHC) and Vientiane Capital Health Department and provincial health departments.
— The Laotian Times

Laos To Export Electricity To Malaysia by September
Laos is to export electricity to Malaysia by September. 100 megawatts of electrical power will be sent to Malaysia by this September, according to the head of the Lao Ministry of Energy and Mines.
— The Laotian Times

Laos and Cambodia to Build Friendship Bridge Across Xelamphao River
Laos and Cambodia are to build a bridge crossing the Xelamphao River, connecting Champasack, Laos with Preah Vihear Province, Cambodia.
— The Laotian Times

Govt secures World Bank loan for nationwide road upgrades
The government has secured a loan of US$25 million (about 205 billion kip) from the World Bank to further strengthen road maintenance and improve road connectivity throughout the country.
— Vientiane Times

 Audit plan for southern provinces revealed
Government agencies at the provincial level and development projects will be some of the main targets of auditors in the southern provinces this year.
— Vientiane Times

Laos prepares to send 500 workers to South Korea
Some 500 Lao nationals will be selected to work in the Republic of Korea this year if they can pass a test called the Employment Point System (EPS-TOPIK, skills test and competency test).
— Vientiane Times Newspaper

Borikhamxay approves funding to shore up eroding riverbank
Borikhamxay province Administration Office has decided on a budget to rebuild the embankment at the Pakxun-Bueng Kan border crossing between Laos and Thailand in Pakxun district.
— Vientiane Times Newspaper

Tourism potential as yet unfulfilled in Bolaven Plateau
The Bolaven Plateau in the south of Laos will be developed into the country’s top agri-business and agri-tourism destination thanks to its year round temperate climate.
— Vientiane Times Newspaper

BCEL Opens E-Banking Network to Krungsri Customers
Banque pour le Commerce Exterieur Lao (BCEL) has signed an agreement with Krungsri Leasing Services granting use of its electronic banking services to customers of Krungrsri.
— The Laotian Times

Authorities repeat call for return of Nongpaen project licence
Vientiane authorities have asked the Lao Asia Trading International Company (LATIC) to return the concession licence they were granted to develop a tourist attraction on marshland in Hadxaifong district, Vientiane.
— Vientiane Times


Malaysia morning newsMalaysia

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu    @Estee


Malaysia offers work permit to Muslim Rohingya refugees from Myanmar
Malaysia’s Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has said Malaysia will allow Rohingya refugees to work legally in the country. The landmark move will start off as a pilot project on March 1. Kuala Lumpur was one of the Southeast Asian capitals to have made early calls to end the persecution of the Musilm minority Rohingya people in Myanmar.
— International Business Times, Singapore Edition

M’sian official on Pedra Branca: We’ll defend borders, keep good ties
KUALA LUMPUR Malaysia’s deputy foreign minister said the country will defend its maritime borders and sovereignty, if newly discovered historical facts prove that Pulau Batu Puteh belongs to Malaysia.
– The new paper

BMF, forex scandals: Mahathir, Kit Siang sour grapes, only RCI can discover truth, says minister
Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak has described Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Lim Kit Siang as sour grapes and are not comparing apple-to-apple when they said that a Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) was needed not just for the Bumiputra Malaysia Finance (BMF) and Bank Negara Forex scandals but also for 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) as well.
– Malay Mail Online

InvestKL: MNCs still bullish on Malaysia despite ringgit rules
Reports claiming that international firms are troubled by Malaysia’s efforts to prop up the ringgit are baseless, according to InvestKL chief executive Datuk Zainal Amanshah says.
– Malay Mail Online

MCPF to set up 154 committees in districts nationwide
The Malaysia Crime Prevention Foundation (MCPF) is setting up committees at district level nationwide to help the organisation play a greater role in tackling crime and reaching out to local communities.
— MToday News Sdn. Bhd.

Qatar supports Malaysia in helping Rohingya refugees
Qatar is the latest Islamic country to come forward to support Malaysia in its humanitarian project to help the Rohingya community that has sought refuge in the country.
— MToday News Sdn. Bhd.

Malaysia man jailed 5 years for swearing allegiance to ISIS in Telegram chat group

A man was jailed five years by Malaysia’s High Court on Tuesday (Feb 7) for supporting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group by way of bai’ah or oath of allegiance on the Telegram chat app.

No visa payment for Malaysians visiting Qatar
Malaysians who wish to visit Qatar would be exempted from paying for the visa, said Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
— Astro Awani

Parliamentary Caucus on Cooperatives to channel information to MPs
A Parliamentary Caucus on Cooperatives has been set up to provide comprehensive information on cooperatives to parliamentary members.
– Malay Mail Online


Myanmar morning newsMyanmar

Compiled by Vat Vin    @vin_vat


Saha Group keeps focus on Myanmar
Saha Group, Thailand’s largest consumer goods conglomerate, has vowed to continue investing in neighbouring countries like Myanmar, where it is scheduled to run a new Mama noodle factory in Mandalay starting this year.
— Bangkok Post

Myanmar International Cooperation Agency to be abolished
Myanmar International Cooperation Agency, which has been criticised for not having been established in accordance with the law and has managed state-owned assets and factories since its establishment, was voted for abolishment at Amyotha Hluttaw yesterday.
– Global New Light Of Myanmar

Union Solidarity and Development Party presents policies and programmes
General secretary of the Union Solidarity and Development Party U Thet Naing Win presented the policies, attitudes and programmes of his party on 7 February 2017, on Radio and TV programmes.
— Global New Light Of Myanmar


Philippines morning newsPhilippines

Compiled by Jose Rodriguez Senas    @15Souter


Inflation hits 2.7% in Jan
Consumer prices accelerated to 2.7 percent in January, the fastest in more than two years since it registered at 3.7 percent in November 2014, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported yesterday.
Philippine Star

Expand list of big taxpayers, BIR told
Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III has ordered the Bureau of Internal Revenue to expand its list of large taxpayers, as the country’s biggest tax-collection agency eyes to sustain the double-digit growth in collections posted in January.
— Philippine Star

Customs take up in January
Import duties and other taxes collected in January reached P35.745 billion pesos, higher than the P31.08 billion collected in the same period last year, the Bureau of Customs said on Tuesday.
— Philippine Star

PH foreign reserves back to growth in Jan
Philippine headline inflation in January accelerated to its fastest pace in more than two years, hitting 2.7 percent on the back of higher prices of non-food items, government data showed on Tuesday.
—Manila Times


Singapore morning newsSingapore

Compiled by Jose Rodriguez Senas    @15Souter


Bond investors face threat of further distress
Singapore’s bond market is still flashing some warning signs after rebounding from a string of defaults last year.
— The Star Online

NParks given more power to protect Singapore’s nature reserves
Under new laws passed by Parliament on Tuesday (Feb 7), the National Parks Board (NParks) will have more regulatory and enforcement power to protect Singapore’s nature reserves and greenery.
Channel News Asia

Regulations in place to ramp up driverless vehicle trials in Singapore
Autonomous vehicle (AV) trials could now take place on public roads in Singapore, after the Road Traffic Act (RTA) was amended on Tuesday (Feb 7) to give the Land Transport Authority (LTA) flexibility to keep pace with the rapidly evolving technology.
Channel News Asia

LTA appoints US engineering firm Aecom to study Singapore end of high-speed rail
The Land Transport Authority (LTA) has appointed engineering design firm Aecom Singapore to conduct an advanced engineering study for the Singapore stretch of the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail.

Singaporeans not comfortable with robot-led teaching, transport: Survey
Fancy having a robot teach your kids, or having them use educational tools integrated with artificial intelligence (AI)?
— Channel News Asia


Thailand morning newsThailand

Compiled by John Le Fevre    @photo-journ


State agencies must modernise, says BOT governor
STATE AGENCIES must give importance to amending laws and regulations, including those to accommodate a sharing economy, to help businesses and people cash in on the “Thailand 4.0” era, Bank of Thailand Governor Veerathai Santipra-bhob said yesterday.
– The Nation

The country’s fiscal position remains strong, Prayut says
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha yesterday told his critics that the country’s financial position remains strong as evidenced by the large international reserves – currently ranked the world’s 18th highest – while a top academic has cautioned about the ballooning budget deficit which could become a burden for successive governments.
– The Nation

ERC suspends power purchase deals
The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has suspended approvals for power purchase agreements (PPAs) of 11 wind farm projects located on Sor Por Kor land, mostly in Nakhon Ratchasima and Chaiyaphum provinces.
Bangkok Post

Dec 5 remains national holiday
The government has announced Dec 5, which marked the birthday of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, as the National Day and National Father’s Day.
Bangkok Post

Bt3.5-bn solution sought for extension of Bangkok’s Green Line
THE BANGKOK Metropolitan Administration (BMA) will propose to the Bangkok Metropolitan Council (BMC) a sum of Bt3.5 billion to cover the asset transfer of the Green Line’s extensions between the Mo Chit-Kukot and Bearing-Samut Prakan sections.
– The Nation

Cabinet undecided on clemency for whistleblowers found guilty of bribery
THE CABINET is still undecided about whether to endorse a proposal to waive criminal charges against people who commit bribery if they provide information about official corruption, the Secretary-General to the Council of State said yesterday.
The Nation

Bilateral FTAs with US, UK urged
The Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking says Thailand should not only move ahead with multilateral free-trade talks, but also with bilateral trade deals with the United Kingdom and the United States to ensure the Kingdom’s competitiveness.
The Nation

Kanit offers changes to controversial media bill
THE media regulation bill prepared by the National Reform Steering Assembly (NRSA)’s media reform committee as part of national reform has faced harsh criticism that it seeks to control media outlets, rather than protect the media. The key points that major media groups have strongly opposed are the make-up of the proposed professional council and the media licensing system outlined in the bill.
The Nation


Vietnam morning newsVietnam

Compiled by John Le Fevre    @photo-journ


HCM City cranks up fight against tax evasion
HCM City wants tax and customs agencies to strengthen the fight against tax evasion, smuggling and trade fraud.
– Viet Nam News biz hub

Ha Noi attracts $366m investment in January
Ha Noi has presented investment licences for 43 new projects with total registered capital of US$31.7 million, the municipal Department of Planning and Investment said.
Viet Nam News biz hub

VN economy will grow 5.1% a year till 2050: report
A report by the prestigious global accounting firm of PricewaterhouseCooper (PWC) predicts continued economic growth for Viet Nam until 2050 period, with annual GDP increase of 5.1 per cent, on average.
– Viet Nam News

January sees higher year-on-year FDI inflow: GSO
Foreign direct investment (FDI) into Việt Nam reached US$1.42 billion from the beginning of the year until January 20, according to data from the General Statistics Office.
– Viet Nam News

Vietnam transport ministry seeks delay to emission standard upgrade
Vietnam’s Ministry of Transport has called on the government to postpone a mandatory European emission standard upgrade for new road vehicles in the country, citing unpreparedness, despite it having been given a five-year window for preparation.
– Tuoi Tre News

Rail safety off the tracks with 43 train collisions recorded in January
Railway safety in Vietnam is becoming a serious concern after 43 train collisions were recorded from January 1 to February 4.
– VnExpress

Hanoi man proposes developing mobile app to battle Saigon littering
A Hanoi resident has recommended using a mobile application to deal with public littering in Ho Chi Minh City, a vexing problem that has yet to be solved by local authorities.
–Tuoi Tre News

Pundit lists musts for Vietnam economy in 2017
The head of the Vietnam Institute of Economics believes that 2017 will be a tougher year for the country’s economy, thus listing several priorities that need addressing so the government can meet its GDP growth target.
– Tuoi Tre News


The Asean Morning News Roundup is compiled by the editorial team at AEC News Today and published at midday M-F.




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