ITC studies ASEAN economic integration
The U.S. International Trade Commission has started a study into the economic integration, export competitiveness, and inbound investment of six industries in Southeast Asia.
The study was requested by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative in a Nov. 9 letter.
The USTR said that in 2006 the United States and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations member countries signed the U.S.-ASEAN Trade and Investment Framework Arrangement, which is designed to support ASEAN's goal of full regional economic integration by 2015. The USTR said achieving this goal would make the region a more attractive trade and investment partner for U.S. business.
Of the 12 ASEAN priority integration sectors, the USTR asked the ITC to examine six of those sectors most important to U.S. exporters and investors, namely electronics, automotive, agro-based products, health care, textiles and apparel, and wood-based products. The ITC's study will provide an overview of regional trends in economic integration, export competitiveness and inbound investment in these six sectors.
The ITC will identify a leading industry within each of the six sectors, and for each industry, provide a description, including the industry's position relative to global competitors. The agency will also identify:
' Leading ASEAN exporting countries and their key markets.
' Leading ASEAN country recipients of inbound investment and source countries of that investment.
' Pairs or groups of countries within ASEAN that have experienced significant integration related to industry production and/or marketing.
' Leading competitive factors that have contributed to changes in industry regional integration, export competitiveness and inbound investment.
The report, ASEAN: Regional Trends in Economic Integration, Export Competitiveness, and Inbound Investment for Selected Industries, is due to the USTR by Aug. 3, 2010. The ITC will hold a public hearing related to the report at its Washington headquarters on Feb. 3. For more details, access the ITC's Web site.