Connecting Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia has made remarkable progress over the past decade in raising income, reducing poverty and integrating into the world economy. Yet economic disparities remain within and between countries in Southeast Asia. Better policies to enhance connectivity will benefit all citizens of Southeast Asian countries through improved physical, institutional and people-to-people linkages, by promoting greater competitiveness, prosperity, inclusiveness and a sense of Community. This is why policy-makers in Southeast Asia have recognised the growing importance of enhancing connectivity in the region.
Connectivity is a thematic priority for the ITF. Secretary-General Young Tae Kim (photo) highlighted ITF's work on transport connectivity at the "Connecting Southeast Asia" Forum of the OECD's Southeast Asia Regional Programme (SEARP) in Paris, France, on 11 March 2019. Mr Kim's intervention was part of a session focusing on the opportunities and challenges of connectivity implementation for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Of particular attention was the ASEAN Master Plan on Connectivity 2025, which identifies five strategic areas: sustainable infrastructure, digital innovation, seamless logistics, regulatory excellence and people mobility.
"Transport Connectivity for Regional Integration" is the theme of ITF's Annual Summit to be held in Leipzig, Germany, from 22-24 May. The Summit will mark the culmination of Korea's ITF Presidency year and provides a platform towards greater representation of ASEAN countries in the ITF’s membership and activities.