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Maximizing Economic Integration
April 2, 2022

The United States is a steadfast partner in supporting ASEAN’s economic growth and regional integration.  The United States and ASEAN cooperate to increase two-way trade and investment through efforts to reduce trade barriers, improve the business and investment climate, accelerate regional integration, and promote U.S. technologies and companies.  The United States’ efforts to maximize regional integration align with the ACRF third broad strategy to broaden economic integration. Download USAID ASEAN Digital Economy Fact Sheet here. Learn more about the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Strategy https://asean.org/asean-comprehensive-recovery-framework-implementation-plan/

Trade and Investment

In 2019, trade in goods and services between ASEAN and the United States was over $354 billion dollars. U.S. exports to ASEAN support an estimated 500,000 American jobs. With over $329 billion dollars in U.S. FDI, ASEAN is the top investment destination for American companies in the Indo-Pacific.

In October 2021, the Governments of the United States of America and the Republic of India will welcome senior government officials, industry executives and other participants to the fourth Indo-Pacific Business Forum. This premier public-private event will be hosted virtually on October 28-29, 2021.

The U.S. Trade and Development Agency is sponsoring the Forum and co-organizing with the Department of State and more than 10 other U.S. government agencies, in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, U.S. India Business Council, U.S. India Strategic Partnership Forum, and the U.S.-ASEAN Business Council. For more information, visit https://www.indopacificbusinessforum.com/

Through the ASEAN Single Window (ASW), USAID has continued to work with ASEAN to implement a self-certified system to expedite select traders in securing government certificates of origin to qualify for lower tariff rates. We have reached the first step of linking the ASW with the United States Customs and Border Protection’s Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) to share electronic plant inspection certificates (e-phyto certificates) between ASEAN and the United States. Currently around 90,000 documents are issued by ASEAN and the United States each year, totaling approximately $13 billion of two-way trade revenue. Expansion of the ASW allows for increased intra-ASEAN trade and will eventually lead to streamlined trade with the United States once our electronic commercial systems are linked.

Sustainable Finance

In the Philippines, the Innovative Development through Entrepreneurship Acceleration (IDEA) is a three-year public-private sector collaboration aimed at bringing entrepreneurship training and culture into engineering and science programs in the Philippine higher education system. IDEA leverages implementing partner resources from a Filipino diaspora organization, the Philippine Development S&T Foundation (PhilDev), through a Global Development Alliance. IDEA creates university linkages with U.S. universities; cultivates a network of private sector leaders that will foster partnerships and long-term sustainability; and brings U.S. entrepreneurs, investors and other leaders to the Philippines to help promote technology-based entrepreneurship.

Sari- Sari is a three-year partnership among Coca-Cola, Procter & Gamble and USAID aims to restore the livelihoods of some 1,000 sari-sari (convenience) store owners and entrepreneurs in Tacloban City and nearby areas who were affected by Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. The activity will re-establish the local sari-sari store network, allow access to basic consumer goods for affected communities, and help stabilize prices over time. USAID, through its Rebuild activity, will construct or repair at least 1,000 sari-sari stores, provide them with inventory and training through the partners – Coca-Cola and P&G – and prepare them to access microfinance. Coca-Cola and P&G will train owners on store management, basic accounting and cash flow.

The Maker Movement Promotion Partnership (MMPP) is a broad coalition of partners, including Mission Vietnam, National Instruments, Fablab Saigon, Arizona State University (ASU) and Vietnamese universities, that will support the growing entrepreneur community in Vietnam by expanding awareness of the global Maker Movement and encouraging its adoption by businesses and academia throughout Vietnam.

U.S>-ASEAN Smart Cities Partnership

U.S.-ASEAN Smart Cities Partnership (USASCP) in November 2018, the United States committed over $13 million to 20 projects throughout ASEAN. Our support helps ASEAN Member States meet rapid urbanization challenges, including transportation, water management, and energy to improve the quality of life for their residents. This year, the USASCP is expanding its programming to support research and innovation in the use of sustainable technology. The Partnership is engaging with the private sector in new programs, such as the Integrated Urban Services project, which will create linkages across basic urban services to optimize efficiency and advance water and energy recovery and reuse.

For more information on USASCP click here.

Funding opportunity: Learn more about Smart Cities Business Innovation Fund here.

Business Policy and Environment

The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) is actively investing in multiple sectors across Southeast Asia, with over $1 billion dollars deployed to date. DFC approved a $25 million investment to support a regional equity fund, which will invest in businesses introducing innovative technology in Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines, and Malaysia. These investments will help reduce costs for small and medium enterprises, facilitate trade, and foster innovation.

Over 4,200 U.S. companies operate in ASEAN, including 70% of U.S. companies listed on the Fortune 500.