Connect with us

Newsdesk

ASSIST – Now ‘Open for Business’

MD Staff

Published

on

The ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Blueprint 2025 highlights a renewed focus on trade facilitation and private sector engagement to support the realisation of a single market and production base.

The World Bank data shows a significant improvement in ASEAN’s business environment between 2007, when the AEC was first adopted, and 2015 indicated by improvement in Ease of Doing Business ranks across all ASEAN member states. To further enhance transparency predictability and intra ASEAN trade, ASEAN continues to pursue new trade facilitation initiatives.

Launched at the 48th AEM Meeting in August 2016 as one of the key deliverables under Lao PDR’s ASEAN Chairmanship in 2016, ASEAN Solutions for Investments, Services and Trade (ASSIST) is now ‘open for business’. http://assist.asean.org/

ASSIST is designed as a non-binding and consultative mechanism aiming at delivering practical solutions to ASEAN based enterprises for specific intra–ASEAN cross border trade problems in a time-bound manner, thereby facilitating business across the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). ASSIST enables the business sector to interact directly with ASEAN Member States to fully implement the ASEAN economic agreements in line with the AEC Blueprint 2025. It will initially be available only to address cross-border problems to trade in goods and will subsequently be extended to cover trade in service and investments issues. ASSIST was developed in partnership with the “ASEAN Regional Integration Support from the EU” project (ARISE).

 

Newsdesk

Value Chains Idea Contest Launched To Support Ethnic Minority Communities In Vietnam

Newsroom

Published

on

Viet Nam’s Committee for Ethnic Minorities Affairs, the World Bank and Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade today jointly launched the “Value Chains Idea Contest” to support ethnic minority communities in Viet Nam.

The contest was launched at a ceremony today to support the development and implementation of new, innovative ideas regarding value chains, expanding market access opportunities for products of ethnic minorities in Vietnam while contributing to the preservation and promotion of cultural strength and traditional knowledge of Vietnamese ethnic minority communities as well as enhancing the role and capacity of ethnic minority women and youth in escaping poverty and bringing prosperity themselves and their communities. The contest is hosted by the Committee for Ethnic Minority Affairs, and supported by the World Bank (WB) and the Australian Government (through the Australian-Bank Partnership – Phase II).

The ceremony was attended by the Minister, Chairman of the Committee for Ethnic Minority Affairs (CEMA); Secretary of the Central Committee of the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union; Country Director for the World Bank in Vietnam; Chargé d’Affaires of the Australian Ambassador to Vietnam; representatives from Ministries, sectors, ministries equivalent agencies; press and media, and Humanitarian Ambassador, Miss Universe Vietnam, H’Hen Nie.

This event is part of series of activities of CEMA and international partners, media partners and Party and Government agencies to support ethnic minorities to catch up with national trends of start-ups contributing to poverty reduction and boosting prosperity in ethnic minority areas, including:

  • National forums on entrepreneurship and value chain for ethnic minorities;
  • Series of ceremonies honoring distinguished ethnic minorities start-ups;
  • Program to support market link for ethnic minority products and markets;
  • Ethnic Minority Development Communication Program;
  • And “Value Chains Idea Contest.”

Eligible candidates include: individuals, groups of individuals, small and medium enterprises, cooperatives, cooperative groups, ethnic minorities, etc. with ideas for ​​developing cooperation or partnerships with ethnic minorities anywhere in Vietnam, which contribute to solving one or both of the following issues: i) Developing value chains benefiting ethnic minority women and youth; ii) Creating an enabling environment for the development of value chains which benefit ethnic minorities, especially women and youth.

Continue Reading

Newsdesk

ADB Ranked First on Aid Transparency among Development Organizations

Newsroom

Published

on

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) ranked first in the 2018 Aid Transparency Index (ATI), an independent measurement of aid transparency spearheaded by British nongovernment organization Publish What You Fund, launched today at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C.

This is the first time that ADB ranked No. 1 in the ATI, which had its pilot run in 2011.  From a score of 84.9% in the 2016 ATI, ADB’s score improved to 98.6% in the 2018 ATI.

Out of 45 of the world’s leading development organizations, ADB and six other organizations—the United Nations Development Programme, UK Department for International Development, African Development Bank, Millennium Challenge Corporation, World Bank-International Development Association, and Inter-American Development Bank—were classified in the top category of “very good” or with a score of at least 80%.

“I am proud of the progress that ADB has made since the last Aid Transparency Index,” said ADB President Mr. Takehiko Nakao. “This reflects a cross-organizational commitment, including at the highest level, to improving the quality of our open data. Transparency is a critical aspect of effective development work and we are glad to be at the forefront of it.”

The 2018 ATI report took note of the “unprecedented amounts of timely aid and development data [that] are available in an open and comparable format” and highlighted that ADB is one of “only two organizations publishing all index indicators in the ATI standard, making their information fully open and comparable.”

ADB has been working to improve the disclosure of its aid data in terms of quality and scope. Starting 2016, ADB has been reviewing its available information, shepherded by a dedicated team of staff from various ADB departments who are ensuring adherence to standards.

Continue Reading

Newsdesk

Climate-friendly initiatives and actions essential for tourism

Newsroom

Published

on

The Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Zurab Pololikashvili, called for the tourism sector to take more action to combat climate change and biodiversity loss during the 30th joint meeting of its Commissions for South Asia and Asia-Pacific in Fiji (18-20 June 2018).

Adding his voice to that of the host country, Mr. Pololikashvili advocated for stronger partnerships and incentives for governments, businesses and crucially tourists themselves to make a difference in climate action efforts. He also made clear that sound policies must be built upon accurate evidence, requiring the tourism sector to better measure its impact on sustainability – while acknowledging progress has been made in this regard, including UNWTO’s development of a statistical framework to measure sustainable tourism.

The remarks were made as part of a regional seminar on how tourism impacts upon sustainable development efforts in the region and globally, held as part of the meeting in the Fijian city of Nadi. The seminar featured deep dialogue on how tourism policies, partnerships and investments can tackle climate change and biodiversity loss.

This was the first Joint Commission meeting held in a Pacific island nation. The meeting and seminar highlighted the need for developing island countries to collaborate on actionable policies, with measurable results, to address climate change and biodiversity protection within the tourism sector. UNWTO also pledged to raise further awareness of climate change’s impacts and effects on tourism through capacity building and educational opportunities.

“This is the perfect place to have this conversation on climate change, as Fiji continues to lead the efforts on climate resilience and sustainability not only within the country but in the entire region. This was also demonstrated during the Global Climate Summit COP 23, when the Government of Fiji committed to the development of sustainable tourism as a tool to tackle climate change”, said Mr. Pololikashvili.

Continue Reading

Latest

Americas1 hour ago

Stronger Sanctions Won’t Solve the Venezuelan Problem

The outcome of recent elections on May 20th has triggered renewed sanctions against the Venezuelan regime. After banning ‘Petro,’ Venezuela’s government-issued...

Middle East2 hours ago

US Foreign Policy in Crisis

Following the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Paris Climate Accord, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is the third multilateral...

Russia3 hours ago

Russia and Africa to strengthen ties further

Faced with persistent criticisms, Russia has finally announced it will most likely host the first high-level Russia-African Union forum next...

Newsdesk3 hours ago

Value Chains Idea Contest Launched To Support Ethnic Minority Communities In Vietnam

Viet Nam’s Committee for Ethnic Minorities Affairs, the World Bank and Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade today jointly...

Economy4 hours ago

Trade in fake Italian goods costs economy billions of euros

Global trade in fake Italian goods such as luxury handbags, watches, foodstuffs and car parts is taking a bite out...

Southeast Asia4 hours ago

Indonesian Muslim leader signals global shifts in meetings with Pence and Netanyahu

Yahya Staquf, a diminutive, soft-spoken leader of Nahdlatul Ulama, the world’s largest Muslim movement, and Indonesian president Joko Widodo’s advisor...

Americas4 hours ago

How Fashion Ties U.S. Domestic Politics with an Authoritarian on Kashmir

There is something charming about a first lady making media bloopers; however, one cannot say the same for those born...

Trending

Copyright © 2018 Modern Diplomacy