SINGAPORE: The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region can be like a hawker centre, where stall holders cooperate and compete but “each offers something special” and makes the whole place a lot more attractive.
Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat used this analogy to illustrate how countries can benefit from economic integration and multilateral trade, at a time when countries are resorting to protectionist measures as a result of trade disagreements.
Speaking at the ASEAN and Asia Forum organised by the Singapore Institute of International Affairs (SIIA) on Thursday (Aug 30), he said regional countries must work together to find their own competitive advantages.
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