Sin Chew Daily/ANN
Malaysian Second Minister of International Trade and Industry Ong Ka Chuan said following the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), some economists had predicted that the bloc would emerge as the fourth largest economy in the world by 2030, after China, India and the European Union.
He also said the region's GDP would double to US$4.7 trillion by 2020 as ASEAN explores new market potentials worldwide.
"Intra-ASEAN investments stood at $23.8 billion in 2014, 15.7% higher than the previous year, making up some 17.33% of all direct investments in the region."
Ong said foreign direct investments (FDI) from ASEAN countries into Malaysia jumped from $526 million in 2010 to $2.2 billion in 2015, while the percentage of intra-ASEAN FDI climbed from 6% in 2010 to 24% last year.
"Services industry is the prime mover of AEC with the import-export of services increased remarkably from $354 billion in 2007 to $619.7 billion in 2014.
"Similarly, intra-ASEAN services trading was also higher from $89.5 billion to $172.6 billion during the same period."
He pointed out that services sector made up 40-60% of ASEAN's GDP, and this was expected to rise further following the continuous development of regional countries.
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