Cross-border Infrastructure

Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) cooperation on transport, telecommunication, energy, and customs

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was established on 8 August 1967 in Bangkok, Thailand. Current ASEAN members include Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Viet Nam. Infrastructure is essential to provide the necessary transport linkages and logistics in support of the establishment of a single market and production base under the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The Fifth ASEAN Transport Ministers Meeting on 15-16 September 1999 in Hanoi, Viet Nam signed a Ministerial Understanding on the Development of the ASEAN Highway Network Project. The Tenth ASEAN Transport Ministers on 23 November 2004 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia endorsed the ASEAN Transport Action Plan 2005-2010 which provides the basis for broadening and deepening cooperation in the ASEAN transport sector.


With the assistance of the Asian Development Bank, ASEAN is formulating a five-year ASEAN Road Safety Action Plan, an ASEAN Intelligent Transport System (ITS) Policy Framework, and an ASEAN highway numbering system of three numeric designations.

Leaders at the Tenth ASEAN Summit in Vientiane, Lao PDR, under the Vientiane Action Programme 2004-2010, called for accelerating the progressive integration of the e-ASEAN sector by 2010. The Fifth ASEAN Telecommunications and Information Technology Ministers (TELMIN) on 27 September 2005 in Hanoi adopted the Ha Noi Agenda on Promoting Online Services and Applications to Realize e-ASEAN.

ASEAN member countries signed an Agreement on the ASEAN Energy Cooperation in 1986 to ensure and develop sources of energy in strengthening the economic resilience of the Member Countries. The ASEAN Ministers on Energy Meeting (AMEM), held in Langkawi in July 2003, called for intensified cooperation in the development and exploitation of the energy resource potentials in the ASEAN region, as well as in attracting private sector participation and investment in the ASEAN energy sector. The Ministers agreed to work collectively in moving forward the Trans-ASEAN Gas Pipeline (TAGP) and the ASEAN Power Grid projects to provide greater stability and security of energy supply in the ASEAN region. The ASEAN Centre for Energy (ACE), established in 1999, serves a key role in facilitating regional energy programs and activities to implement the ASEAN Plan of Action for Energy Cooperation (APAEC) 2004-2009.

Member countries committed to facilitate intra-ASEAN trade by simplifying and harmonizing trade procedures and enhancing regional cooperation in customs. The ASEAN Directors-General of Customs signed an ASEAN Customs Code of Conduct in 1983. The ASEAN Agreement on Customs was signed in 1997, providing a legal framework for ASEAN customs cooperation.




Studies and Research