ASEAN builds Capacity in Strategic Trade Management

Bandung, Indonesia – Over the last two weeks, Customs and other government officials from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) participated in two week-long training courses focused on building the capacity of ASEAN Member States (AMS) in strategic trade management (STM). Each week-long event provided the opportunity for government officials from a range of agencies involved in trade to understand best practices in STM and how these overlap with trade facilitation initiatives, such as single windows. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) sponsored this event in partnership with ASEAN.

This workshop is part of a broader effort to promote secure trade and build the capacity of member states to integrate security processes and systems into their national single windows (NSWs). The workshop builds on the concept that linking the STM and trade facilitation endeavors, including single windows, at the outset will help establish technology and legal platforms to exchange key cargo clearance data between Member States, thus supporting both expedited and secured trade.

Over the course of each week-long event, participants heard from a mix of case studies and presentations focused on the feasibility of harmonization of STM/single window practices and platforms across the region, for greater efficiency in enforcement and facilitation. Both workshops helped ASEAN move forward in achieving the twin goals of facilitating free flow of goods and strengthening supply chain security.

This assistance expands on existing U.S. support to ASEAN to help Member States meet their obligations under the ASEAN Economic Community.