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Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN)

Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN)

Following the identification of ASEAN as a priority region in the 2006 Global Europe Communication, the EU has been actively engaged with the region. Negotiations for a region-to-region FTA with ASEAN were launched in 2007 and paused in 2009 to give way to a bilateral format of negotiation.

These bilateral FTAs were conceived as building blocks towards a future region-to-region agreement. Negotiations with Singapore and Malaysia were launched in 2010, with Vietnam in June 2012 and with Thailand in March 2013. The European Commission finalised the negotiation of a bilateral F T A with Singapore in October 2014.

The EU remains open to start new negotiations with other partners in the region and  hopes in the future to complete these agreements with a region-to-regional trade agreement.

Trade picture

ASEAN countries:

ASEAN as a whole represents the EU's 3rd largest trading partner outside Europe (after the US and China) with more than €235 billion of trade in goods and services in 2013.

The EU is ASEAN 3rd largest trading partner after China and Japan, accounting for around 13% of ASEAN trade.

The EU is by far the largest investor in ASEAN countries. EU companies have invested an average €14.8 billion annually in the region (2006-2013).

The EU's main exports to ASEAN are chemical products, machinery and transport equipment. The main imports from ASEAN to the EU are machinery and transport equipment, agricultural products as well as textiles and clothing.

EU-ASEAN "trade in goods" statistics

Trade in goods 2013-2015, € billions
Year EU imports EU exports Balance
2013 96.8 81.7 -15.1
2014 101.1 78.6 -22.5
2015 118.5 83.0 -35.4

Date of retrieval: 14/04/2016

More statistics on ASEAN

EU and the ASEAN

Besides the trade negotiations with individual ASEAN members, the EU cooperates closely with the ASEAN region as a whole. Cooperation is maintained through:

  • an EU-ASEAN Dialogue which includes discussions on trade and investment issues at ministerial and senior economic officials levels.
  • the EU and the ASEAN Secretariat conduct seminars on topics such as regional economic integration, liberalisation of services, technical barriers to trade and trade facilitation.

Trading with ASEAN