Deutsche Bank, in its "Reimaging ASEAN to 2025" report, examined ASEAN's progress in realising the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) 2025 Vision, to which it said the region was in a strong position for growth. Moreover, according to report, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam are expected to achieve a 5% minimum growth in 2017 and 2018.
The Star Online reported that the bank called for further removal of trade barriers, supportive national and regional policies as well as a boost in investment in digitisation.
The report said ongoing efforts to bring forward critical reforms have to be strengthened within the next decade to see a highly prosperous and deeply integrated Asean materialise.
"Governments must make sure there are no unnecessary barriers restricting integration if the AEC vision is to become a reality and while there has been a tendency for governments to hesitate before making extensive regulatory reforms, it is important that they do the cost-benefit analysis and push through reform wherever appropriate," Deutsche Bank said.
The report highlighted the fundamental role played by digital technology in facilitating integration and sustainable economic growth. It also cited the digital economy as the future.
When applied effectively, digital technology could benefit the masses but it was key to position digitalisation as a central pillar in the single economic market under the AEC vision.
While digital technology could spur opportunities, without sufficient regional cooperation, it could also pose a competitive threat leading to divisive outcomes.
Meanwhile, The Star Online reported that CIMB Group picked up 21 awards at the Asset Triple A Islamic Finance Awards 2017, grabbing prizes in categories including Sukuk House of the Year, Asia Pacific for the fifth consecutive year.
Group chief executive Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Aziz said the success was attributed to the efforts that the group has invested over the years to strengthen its Islamic finance capabilities.
Among the other awards won by the group were Best Investment Bank, Asia Pacific, Best Investment Bank, Malaysia, Asset Management House of the Year, Asia Pacific and Islamic Deal of the Year.