Held by the ASEAN Secretariat, the event was within the framework of the Accelerated COVID-19 Economic Support programme which was funded by the UK and kicked off last year to bring analytics and data to inform decision-making, and support acceleration of post-COVID economic recovery.
In partnership with the Boston Consulting Group, the workshop aimed to provide greater understanding of ASEAN's global value chain challenges and opportunities in the post-pandemic recovery and discuss ways forward to advance the region's global value chain agenda.
Addressing the opening ceremony, Deputy Secretary General of ASEAN for ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Satvinder Singh highlighted that ''despite external shocks such as COVID-19 and global trade tensions, global value chains are here to stay, and will continue to be an important growth strategy for ASEAN.''
''These shocks have transformed the GVCs, making them more regionalised, promoting more diversification, and putting resilience and sustainability considerations to the forefront. Fresh GVC growth of activities will help the economies of ASEAN recoup, and replace job displacements and bring sustained recovery growth to the region and ASEAN stands a good chance in reaping the benefit from these emerging trends," he further added.
However, Singh warned that this endeavour will not come automatic, and ASEAN should focus its efforts to improve its overall competitiveness through good regulatory practice, critical infrastructure development, better connectivity, and human capital development.
On his part, UK Ambassador to ASEAN Jon Lambe indicated that AEC's focus areas this year – recovery, digitalisation, and sustainability – are priorities that the UK shares. Together, the UK and ASEAN will not only overcome the pandemic, but also stimulate a rapid, inclusive, and sustainable recovery, he said.
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