Inter- and Intra-ASEAN Regional Trade
Abstract The CEPT scheme for the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) is established to promote regional economic growth by accelerating liberalization in intra-ASEAN trade and investment. This paper aims to analyze the major trade trends in the ASEAN region. The inter- and intra-regional trade analyses yield some conclusions. First, there have been changes in the geographic destinations for the ASEAN countries’ exports. Although Japan, the EU and the NAFTA are still dominant trade partners, China (Mainland), Hong Kong and Taiwan have increasingly become important geographic destinations for the ASEAN countries’ exports. Second, the five original ASEAN members have dominated the intra-ASEAN regional trade. Third, there are positive relationships between the size of country and the share of intra-regional trade in the region. Fourth, the intra-ASEAN regional trade has been larger (intense) than expected given the ASEAN’s importance in world trade, except Cambodia. Fifth, Constant Market Share analysis shows that the exports performance of ASEAN countries are mainly determined by the general rise in the world market. The establishment of AFTA, however, could increase competitiveness of ASEAN countries’ export and change the exports destinations for a while.
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