(Chiang Rai) - The US-ASEAN Business Council led a delegation of 16 top American financial services firms on its annual mission to the ASEAN Finance Ministers’ and Central Bank Governors’ Meeting (AFMGM). During the mission, The Council also signed a Memorandum of Understanding on April 4 with the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ABAC), formalizing collaboration of the Council, ABAC Financial Services Working Group and the EU-ASEAN Business Council.
The US-ASEAN Business Council delegation was led by the co-chairs of its Financial Services Committee, Amol Gupte, ASEAN Head and Citi Country Officer for Singapore; and Yancy Molnar, Senior Vice President, International Government Affairs at Chubb; as well as the US-ASEAN Business Council’s President & CEO, Alexander C. Feldman; and Senior Vice President & Regional Managing Director, Ambassador Michael W. Michalak.
"The annual meeting of the ASEAN Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors provides a forum to exchange ideas and discuss solutions to some of the key issues facing the region. We have held valuable exchanges on issues such as cybersecurity, digital finance and sustainable finance. Successful policy initiatives in these areas can help develop integration and drive economic growth across ASEAN,” said Amol Gupte, ASEAN Head and Citi Country Officer for Singapore and co-chair of the Council’s Financial Services Committee. “The U.S. business community is committed to contributing to an ecosystem that is resilient and beneficial to the region as a whole. We are therefore keen to partner with policy makers and look forward to continuing our dialogue."
Key mission themes of Enabling Digital Finance, Cybersecurity, Attracting Foreign Investments, and methods for Financial Sustainability, were developed in support of the priorities of the 2019 ASEAN Chair. This year’s theme is “Advancing partnership and sustainability.”
“Seamless financing and payment linkages, enabling sustainable finance and inclusive growth are keys to striving toward ASEAN connectivity and resilience, which must be underpinned by progress in cybersecurity, continued investment and sound data governance policy,” said Alexander Feldman, President and CEO of the US-ASEAN Business Council. “The Council’s members are eager to support modernization of ASEAN’s financial services sector, facilitate investments into the region and strengthen the broad cybersecurity infrastructure, as well as driving resilience and sustainability through opportunity areas of catastrophe bonds, parametric risk transfer solutions and green, social and sustainability bonds.”
This is the Council’s 20th annual engagement with ASEAN Finance Ministers, and fifth year since ASEAN Central Bank Governors joined the meetings.
“The financial services landscape in ASEAN is rapidly evolving, creating exciting opportunities but also new challenges for both government and industry,” said Yancy Molnar, Senior Vice President, International Government Affairs, at Chubb and co-chair of the Council’s Financial Services Committee. “Our productive discussions with the Ministers and Governors revealed that our priorities are aligned and our joint interest in maximizing benefits for the ASEAN consumer is best served through effective government and industry collaboration.”
“This was a great opportunity to get our members in front of the key financial decision makers in ASEAN. Our companies were not only able to cement partnership relationships with the Ministers and Senior Officials but also to continue to engage on the critical financial issues of the day,” said Senior Vice President & Regional Managing Director Ambassador Michael W. Michalak.
The Council met with Brunei Minister of Finance and Economy II Dato Dr Amin, Indonesia Minister of Finance Sri Mulyani, Lao Minister of Finance Somdy Douangdy, Myanmar Central Bank Governor Kyaw Kyaw Maung, Singapore Minister of Finance Heng Swee Keat, Monetary Authority of Singapore Managing Director Ravi Menon, and Bank of Thailand Governor Veerathai Santiprabhob.
Companies participating on the mission included AIG, Amazon, American Express, Chubb, Cigna, Citi, Google, JP Morgan, KKR, Marsh & McLennan, Mastercard, MetLife, Inc., Microsoft, S&P Global, Stripe, and Visa.