LEADING THE WAY
Asean countries are embarking on a framework to strengthen their political and security affairs, social and cultural ties as well as the regional economy. The culmination of this is the Asean Economic Community (AEC), which will formally take shape at the end of 2015 as a single regional common market, and an international organisation under the Asean Charter.
Within the region there has been continued economic development. It started with the establishment of the Asean Free Trade Area (Afta), followed by the Asean Framework Agreement on Services and the Asean Investment Area, leading toward the AEC to allow for easier and freer mobility in five areas: investment, services, goods, skilled labour and capital.
Out of the above five areas, only free flows of investment and services will be directly associated with the liberalisation of business operations in Thailand that are under the control of the Department of Business Development (DBD). These will be subject to terms and conditions negotiated by the Department of Trade Negotiations with Asean countries. Once concluded, these terms and conditions will be automatically enforced by the Commerce Ministry through regulatory controls, conditions and procedures for applying for privileges and protection under the Foreign Business Act (FBA).
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