Asean morning news for May 3

Asean morning news for May 3
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Asean morning newsAsean morning news

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu          @stmarisewudolu


Southeast Asia manufacturing gauge improves in April
Southeast Asian manufacturing picked up in April, with a leading survey of purchasing managers showing its highest reading in five months, in a sign that the regional slowdown brought on by trade tensions may be moderating.
— Financial Times

Japan, China, S. Korea to fund S.E. Asia infrastructure
The finance ministers and central bank governors of Japan, China and South Korea agreed Thursday to support a plan to set up a new financing framework aimed at utilizing more private-sector funds for infrastructure investment in Southeast Asian countries.
— The Japan News

UP is 4th best university in SEA
The University of the Philippines (UP) is now the fourth best university in Southeast Asia, surging past six higher education institutions in the region in the latest Asian university rankings released by London-based Times Higher Education (THE).
— The Philippine Star

Avoid repayment woes for BRI loans–ADB
As countries look forward to the economic gains from the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the Asian Development Bank (ADB) issued a word of caution at its annual governors’ meeting here: countries, it said, should be “careful” and ensure that debts linked to the initiative will not “cause trouble for the payment capacity of the government.”
— Business Mirror

Southeast Asian nations ready to withstand any global liquidity crunch
The 10 economies of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN): Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam – plus China, Japan, and South Korea, are now better placed than they have ever been to withstand any global liquidity crunch.
— Big News Network (media release) (blog)

Asean, East Asian giants affirm fight vs trade protectionism
The three East Asian economic giants together with Asean member-states on Thursday reiterated that they would fight protectionism while strengthening intraregional trade through targeted initiatives amid slowing global growth.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

Tourism an economic growth driver in ASEAN – DOT
The tourism industry is an important component that helps in driving the economic growth of all Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states, especially for developing countries like the Philippines.
— Manila Bulletin

Asia’s record remittances show globalization alive and well
New economic data shows that foreign remittances sent to Asian countries hit US$300 billion for the first time last year, underscoring the ever-rising importance overseas work for the region’s laborers despite world-beating economic growth rates.
— Asia Times

PH, Singapore co-lead the ASEAN Data Protection and Privacy Forum
The National Privacy Commission (NPC) is closely working with Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) in developing the ASEAN Framework on Digital Data Governance.
— Manila Bulletin

ASEAN+3 sets base for more local currency swaps to strengthen regional support
The finance chiefs of 13 Asian countries, including South Korea, on Thursday agreed on a preliminary framework to strengthen regional currency swap agreements, with aims to avoid overreliance on the US dollar.
— The Korea Herald

Unicorns or ponies? Overvaluation in the ASEAN startup landscape
Back in 2013 when venture capitalist (VC) investor Aileen Lee coined the term “unicorns” for tech startups that had reached the coveted US$1 billion valuation mark, it held an exclusive, almost mythical meaning.
— Asean Today

Vietnam and the Mekong’s Synthetic Drug Epidemic
Although Vietnam has some of the world’s most stringent drug laws — those convicted of possessing or smuggling more than 600 grams of heroin or more than 2.5 kilograms of methamphetamine face death – the country has also been facing the existence of a key smuggling and trafficking hub for illegal drugs around the Golden Triangle, at the intersection of China, Laos, Thailand, and Myanmar.
— The Diplomat

Wealthy Countries’ Trash Overwhelms Southeast Asia
Wealthy countries are exporting millions of tons of plastic waste to Southeast Asia where the recycling systems are becoming overwhelmed, leading to widespread pollution problems, according to a joint investigation by Greenpeace and the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA).
— Voice of America (video)

Asean+3’s Chief Economist on Asian Growth
Hoe Ee Khor, macroeconomic research office chief economist at Asean+3, discusses growth in Asia, emerging markets, global supply chain and a turnaround in Malaysia.
— Bloomberg (video)

Dr M to launch BOCE Asean e-commerce platform
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (picture) is expected to launch the BOCE Malaysia/ Asean e-commerce trading platform in Putrajaya this afternoon as the region pushes for the expansion of trades with the world’s second-largest economy.
— The Malaysian Reserve

PM hails Asean impact 20 years on
PRIME Minister Hun Sen on Monday hailed the positive impact on Cambodia joining Asean, saying the bloc was a source of peace, security and prosperity.
— The Phnom Penh Post

Asean finance officials bank on ‘green’ bonds
Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors across the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) as well as China, Japan, and Korea have committed to deepen infrastructure finance and promote green bonds.
— Business Mirror

ASEAN’s pangolin disaster
Unprecedented seizures of pangolin scales in Singapore last month – when the island-state seized a world record 25.6 tonnes in five days – is drawing more attention to the trade of the little-known creature.
— The Asean Post

Laos, Asean back use of traditional medicine
Laos will continue to work with other Asean member countries to guarantee the quality and safety of traditional medicine.
— Vientiane Times

Second ASEAN Sustainable Tourism Awards now open for submissions
ASEAN has announced that the second ASEAN Sustainable Tourism Awards is now open for submissions until 30 October 2019. Results will be announced in early December and the awarding ceremony will take place during the ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) 2020.
— TravelDailyNews

A Closer Look at the Fintech Scene in Southeast Asia
Fintech is on the rise in Southeast Asia, find out how fintech startups are changing the regional financial landscape.
— Next Unicorn

The Maekong’s 4,000 Islands
Travel from Bangkok, or elsewhere, to the town of Pakse in Laos and then take a bus to the over 4,000 islands (locally known as Si Phan Don in the Champasak Region), surrounded by seawater, but the murky brown waters of the mighty Mekong River.
— Globe Rovers

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Cambodia morning newsCambodia morning news

Compiled by Piseth Pov          @piseth6666


Kingdom’s inclusivity hailed
International Monetary Fund (IMF) managing director Christine Lagarde has hailed Cambodia as an example in the increase of financial inclusion, one where fintech has been used to increase financial access to people who were previously unbanked.
— The Phnom Penh Post

UN Expert Meets Cambodia Justice Minister, Says Kem Sokha’s Detention is Problematic
UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Cambodia Rhona Smith, as part of her 11-day visit to the country, met Justice Minister Ang Vong Vathana to discuss the ongoing de-facto detention of opposition leader Kem Sokha and other justice system-related topics, she said on Thursday.
— Radio Free Asia

Former Nauru detainee Abdullah Zalghani says Australia abandoned his family in Cambodia
The Australian Government is refusing to honour promises made to a Syrian refugee who resettled in Cambodia, leaving his four children without education or health insurance.
— ABC News

See here for more of today’s Cambodia morning news

Indonesia morning newsIndonesia morning news

Compiled by Piseth Pov          @piseth6666


Indonesia says rupiah weakness a cyclical trend
The Indonesian rupiah’s depreciation in recent days is rooted in payments to offshore for dividends and servicing foreign loans, which typically happens in the second quarter of every year, the central bank’s spokesman said on Thursday.
— Nasdaq

BPS records ‘unexpected’ rise in April inflation
The monthly inflation rate increased to 0.44 percent in April, higher than market expectations due mainly to an increase in food prices, Statistics Indonesia (BPS) announced on Thursday.
— The Jakarta Post

Gov’t Expose First Ever Online Illegal Ivory Trade Worth Billions
Environment and Forestry Ministry exposed for the first time online trading practice of ivory. Poaching and trading of ivory are prohibited by law as it resulted in the low population of elephant in Indonesia.

See here for more of today’s Indonesia morning news


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Lao PDR morning newsLao PDR morning news

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu          @stmarisewudolu


Laos, China sign more deals
Laos and China have signed a new package of cooperation documents, which is expected to take collaboration between the two nations to new heights.
— Vientiane Times

OPINION: Lao GDP growth must be linked to job, income generation
In public administration and development circles, there are two main competing theories. One suggests the government should do nothing except focus on boosting GDP growth while the other indicates that the government should not only maintain GDP growth but also ensure the redistribution of wealth through the greater provision of healthcare and education services.
— ANN/ Vientiane Times

Trade union federation pursues minimum wage hike
In its bid to improve the standard of living of low wage earners, the Lao Federation of Trade Unions (LFTU) has issued a statement telling all businesses that an increase in the minimum wage requires them to pay workers a minimum of 1.1 million kip per month, a 210,000 kip increase on the current rate of 900,000 kip.
— Vientiane Times (paywall)

See here for more of today’s Lao morning news

Malaysia morning newsMalaysia morning news

Compiled by Sreypov Men           @MenSreypov


Malaysia not under US visa waiver programme – Foreign Ministry
A news portal has wrongly stated that Malaysia is listed under the United States visa waiver programme, according to the Foreign Ministry. To date, it said, there had been no change in the status of the programme for Malaysians.
— The Borneo Post

Entrepreneur minister: Malaysia to unify worldwide halal certs for Muslim countries
Entrepreneur Development Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Md Yusof said Malaysia will soon spearhead a move to unify halal certification worldwide.
— Malay Mail

Businesses worry about economy slowing, uncertain govt policies
The possibility of an economic slowdown is the biggest concern among Malaysian businesses, as the government has not provided a clear direction in steering the economy forward, says an independent market research firm.
— The Star Online

See here for more of today’s Malaysia Morning News

Myanmar morning newsMyanmar morning news

Compiled by Sreypov Men           @MenSreypov

Private Sector Development Committee meets for raising Ease of Doing Business Ranking
Vice President U Myint Swe who is also the Chairman of the Private Sector Development Committee attended and addressed the 9th coordination meeting of the Private Sector Development Committee (PSDC) held in the meeting room of the Ministry of Commerce yesterday morning.
— The Global New Light of Myanmar

Myanmar army kills six ethnic Rakhine detainees as violence worsens
Myanmar’s army said it shot dead six detainees in a village school Thursday (May 2) while holding 275 men on suspicion of being Rakhine rebels, as fears over military impunity grow in the escalating fighting.
— Channel NewsAsia

Successive governments have been weak in reducing unemployment rates – NUP
National Unity Party (NUP) said on the occasion of International Workers’ Day that successive governments had weaknesses in reducing unemployment though the constitution has provision for doing so.
— Mizzima

See here for more of today’s Myanmar morning news

Philippines morning newsPhilippines morning news

Compiled by Stella-maris Ewudolu          @stmarisewudolu


April Philippine factory reading lowest in 9 months
Growth in Philippine manufacturing eased in April amid a slight improvement to the country’s business conditions, according to monthly tracking done by IHS Markit for Nikkei Inc.
— The Philippine Star

PHL nets $42-million export sales, investment leads in Malaysia halal trade show–DTI exec
The Philippines reaped over $42 million in export sales and investment leads from more than 300 foreign buyers following its participation in the world’s largest halal trade show.
— Business Mirror

UP enters top 100 universities in THE Asia rankings
The University of the Philippines is among the top 100 in unversities in Asia after placing 95th in the 2019 Times Higher Education Asia University Rankings.
— The Philippine Star

See here for more of today’s Philippines morning news

Singapore morning newsSingapore morning news

Compiled by Piseth Pov          @piseth6666


MOM releases official list of public holidays and long weekends for 2020
The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) recently released the official list of all Singapore public holidays for 2020.
— The Independent

A new era for payments is dawning in Singapore
THIS is the dawn of a new era for Singapore’s payments system. As part of its Smart Nation vision to become a leading economy powered by digital innovation, the government has been working on a range of initiatives to digitise payments.
— The Business Times

Nearly 500 private addresses falsely registered as foreign workers’ home addresses since December
There have been nearly 500 reports of private addresses being falsely registered as foreign workers’ home addresses in the past five months, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said on Thursday (May 2).
— CNA (very annoying popups)

See here for more of today’s Singapore morning news


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Thailand morning newsThailand morning news

Compiled by John Le Fevre          @photo_journ


Chiang Mai tops list of most polluted cities
Chiang Mai returned as the world’s most polluted city again around noon yesterday after the government’s ban on open burning came to an end on Tuesday.
— Bangkok Post

Royal Coronation – Schedule of events
The Coronation of HM King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun will run over three days from Saturday, May 4 to Monday, May 6. The actual coronation takes place on the first day.
— The Thaiger

12 Thai provinces face water shortages
The government has warned that a dozen provinces are at risk of running out of water.
— Coconuts (paywall)

See here for more of today’s Thailand morning news

Vietnam morning newsVietnam morning news

Compiled by Sreypov Men           @MenSreypov


Vietnam should strictly monitor zero-tax car imports from ASEAN: Thaco
Vietnam’s leading auto firm Thaco wants the government to strictly inspect zero tariff application on cars imported from ASEAN.
— VnExpress

Vietnam targets 50% enterprises operating on digital platform by 2025
A successful digital transformation would help Vietnam’s GDP increase by US$162 billion over the next 20 years.
— The Hanoitimes

Tax incentives can speed up cashless payment in Vietnam
Vietnamese banks are proposing tax incentives for businesses adopting e-payments as a way to boost cashless payments.
— Vietnam Insider

See here for more of today’s Vietnam morning news


The Asean morning news roundup and its individual country morning news round-ups are the most comprehensive hand-curated selection of news reports from around the Asean Economic Community (AEC) published. We scour hundreds of local and international news and websites to find the things that you need to know to start your working week day.

We clearly identify the source of the story, whether it is behind a paywall, a media release, or whether the site uses annoying pop-up advertising or auto-play video, in case those things annoy you. It’s all then packaged up in an easy to read format enabling you to make an informed choice of whether you want to learn more by clicking directly through to the original source, or keep on reading the headlines. AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.


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