Catalysing the ASEAN Digital Future: Insights from the Policy Dialogue on ASEAN Digital Community 2045

14 November 2023
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Krabi, 14-15 November 2023: The Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) successfully convened the Policy Dialogue on ASEAN Digital Community 2045 at Centara Grand in Krabi, Thailand. This groundbreaking workshop aimed to envision and prepare for the future digital landscape of the ASEAN region, fostering discussions, idea exchange, and charting a path towards a digitally integrated ASEAN by 2045.

Dr Lili Yan Ing, Lead Advisor Southeast Asia Region at ERIA, delivered the opening speech, emphasising the significance and potential of the ASEAN digital economy. Sidharto Suryodipuro, Director-General of ASEAN Cooperation at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia, shared Indonesia's perspective on the ASEAN Digital Community 2045 in his opening remarks. He also highlighted views and decisions resulting from the 2023 ASEAN Chairmanship, expressing Indonesia’s commitment to supporting and collaborating closely with Lao PDR during its Chairmanship, particularly in the digital sector.

H.E. Manothong Vongsay, Vice Minister of Industry and Commerce of Lao People’s Democratic Republic, officially inaugurated the Policy Dialogue on ASEAN Digital Community 2045. He announced that Lao PDR would lead the 14 Priority Economic Deliverables (PEDs) under the 3 Strategic Trusts for the ASEAN Chairmanship in 2024, with the third Strategic Trust focusing on ‘Transforming for the Digital Future.’

The dialogue commenced with a presentation on Digital Community 2045 by Dr Yessi Vadila, a Trade Specialist at ERIA, based on a chapter titled ASEAN Digital Community 2045 by Ing et al., (2023). Dr Mira Burri then presented on global trade governance in the era of digital transformation. Subsequent presentations covered the state of the digital economy in each ASEAN country, China, South Korea, Germany, and Sweden. Each presentation was followed by discussions and views from the designated discussants and government officials of the respective countries. The Policy Dialogue saw active participation from all contributing authors, discussants, officials, and participants.

Serving as a platform for authors to delve into the digital economy of their designated countries, the hybrid setting of the Policy Dialogue facilitated dynamic exchanges. Authors presented their papers, while discussants and ASEAN government officials provided valuable input, and engaging Q&A sessions were conducted.

The Policy Dialogue on ASEAN Digital Community 2045 is poised to yield the final draft of policy papers, marking a crucial step towards shaping the forthcoming ASEAN Digital Community 2045 report.

Discussion Paper: ASEAN Digital Community 2045

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