Capital Markets Forum (ACMF) was established under auspices of ASEAN
Finance Ministers in 2004 to serve as a forum for heads of securities
regulators in ASEAN region to discuss policy issues relating to capital market
development. ACMF is currently chaired by Mr. Thirachai
Phuvanatnaranubala, Secretary-General of the Securities and Exchange
ASEAN and Plus Standards
A recent notable achievement of ACMF is the
development of the harmonized disclosure standards for
multi-jurisdictions offerings of equity and debt securities in ASEAN, namely,
ASEAN and Plus Standards. ASEAN and Plus Standards bring ease and cost savings
to issuers who make offerings of securities across borders within ASEAN and
also enhances the attractiveness of ASEAN as a combined capital market for
fund-raising, as well as underlines the combined ASEAN securities as an
attractive asset class by raising the disclosure standards among ASEAN members
to international level.
ASEAN and Plus Standards introduces two levels of standards, comprising a set
of common ASEAN Standards, and a set of limited additional standards known as
|1.||ASEAN Standards are based on the standards
on cross-border offerings set by the International Organization of Securities
Commissions (IOSCO). However, ASEAN Standards do exceed some of the dated IOSCO
standards where appropriate. They also fully adopt the accounting and auditing
standards of the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and
International Standards on Auditing (ISA).
| ||Texts of ASEAN Standards are available here: Equity, Debt
|2.||Plus Standards contain additional standards
that are required by some ASEAN jurisdictions due to their individual market
practices, laws or regulations.
| ||Texts of the Thailand’s Plus Standards are available here: Equity, Debt
| ||Frequently asked questions are also available here.
The SEC, Thailand,
along with the Securities Commission, Malaysia and the Monetary Authority of
Singapore jointly announced that they have implemented the ASEAN and Plus
Standards Scheme on June 12th 2009. The joint press release can be found
For the summary of foreign issuance of equity and debt securities, please
ASEAN Capital Markets Integration
In addition, ACMF also embarked upon the drafting of a roadmap for ASEAN
capital market integration, known as “ACMF’s Implementation Plan”, under
the objective of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Blueprint 2015. The
initiative began after receiving the endorsement at the ASEAN Finance Ministers
Meeting (AFMM) held in Danang, Vietnam, in April 2008. The project was
undertaken with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). A group of
4 well- known experts from the private sector was also formed as the group of
experts to assist ACMF to ensure the Implementation Plan would be pragmatic
and beneficial to the private sector. Members of the group of experts are:
|1) Mr. Jose Isidro Camacho||Vice Chairman - Asia Pacific Credit Suisse and
Former Finance Secretary of the Philippines;
|2) Mr. Banyong Pongpanich||Chairman, Phatra Securities Public Company
|3) Dr. Thillainathan Ramasamy||Director of Bursa Malaysia Berhad and Director of
|4) Mr. Piyush Gupta||Chief Executive Officer, DBS Group Holdings and
former CEO Southeast Asia Pacific - Citibank, N.A.
In addition, several capital market experts from the private sector in ASEAN
were invited as National Experts to provide technical input towards the
development of the Implementation Plan
The drafting began in mid-2008 and was completed in March 2009, with a
series of discussions and meetings among ACMF members, Group of Experts,
National Experts and the consulting team. In addition, inputs from agencies
such as the Ministries of Finance, the Central Banks and the stock exchanges
were gathered during the process.
The Implementation Plan was endorsed by the ASEAN Finance
Ministers at the ASEAN Finance Ministers’ Meeting (AFMM) held in Pattaya,
Thailand on April 9, 2009.
The Implementation Plan seeks to achieve the goals of the AEC Blueprint 2015
by offering a comprehensive set of strategic initiatives and formulating
specific implementation actions and milestones. The initiatives cover three
|Broad themes||Key initiatives
1) Creating an enabling environment for
- Harmonization and mutual recognition framework
2) Creating the market infrastructure and
regionally focused products and intermediaries
- ASEAN exchange alliance and governance framework ;
- Promoting new products and building ASEAN as an asset class;
- Strengthening bond markets
3) Strengthening the implementation
- Aligning domestic capital market development plans to support regional
- Reinforcing ASEAN working processes
recognizes that an effective implementation plan must have clear
prioritisation. Therefore, the Implementation Plan envisages three distinct
phases (2009-2010, 2011-2012, and 2013-2015). The core strategy in the Plan is
a mutual recognition and harmonization process of expanding scope and country
coverage. The initial phases of the Plan focus on establishing bilateral
arrangements, and subsequently moving towards multilateral arrangements as more
countries become ready to opt-in. Further, the Plan focuses on liberalization
initiatives for non-retail investors first, with subsequent opening up to
retail investors, complemented by an enhanced investor protection regime.
The following are key underlying principles of the Implementation
Adoption of international standards to the maximum extent possible.
Progressive liberalization to facilitate more open access and cost reduction
through greater competition.
Sequencing of regional integration initiatives taking into account ease of
implementation, market preferences, and technical linkages.
Adequate coordination of ASEAN level working processes.
Consistent implementation of policies to support regional integration at
country level, with effective monitoring mechanisms.
Strong communications plan and consultative processes to build consensus and
set priorities for integration initiatives.
Texts of the Implementation Plan for ASEAN
capital markets integration are available here.
More information on the Implementation Plan can
be found in the speech of Mr.
Thirachai Phuvanatnaranubala, Secretary-General, SEC Thailand and Chairman,
ASEAN Capital Market Forum presented to the 2nd OECD Southeast Asia Regional
Forum in Bangkok.
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