Dato Paduka Lim Jock Hoi

ASEAN is at an important point in its community building journey. In the decades following the formal establishment of the ASEAN Community, the region’s growth and development trajectory will continue to be influenced by developments and trends in the technological and digital fields as well as the shifts in geo-political economy. Globalisation today is no longer solely defined by the cross-border movement of goods and services or by linking traditional sea or land routes, but also by the inter-connectedness and inter-dependence of the economies through the flows of peoples, ideas, production capacities, and values – all of which are significantly enabled by technologies. These technological advances are in turn indelibly shaping global policies on trade, investment, and governance, which will have an impact on ASEAN’s future trajectories.

Making this quantum leap into the 4th Industrial Revolution era and its ramifications on policy and regional integration requires forward-looking responses.  ASEAN’s implementation of the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 and its corresponding Community Blueprints have to be informed by these on-going developments and focused on achieving ASEAN’s resilience, inclusive growth and sustainable development.

The role of the ERIA as a regional think-tank for ASEAN as well as its focus on research topics of strategic economic interest to the region will be help in assisting ASEAN to propel forward both in its regional integration efforts and in its integration with the world.  I am confident that the work of ERIA will continue to assist ASEAN to meet the challenges of economic community building and in addressing new challenges in the years to come.