The United States shares ASEAN’s vision for integration, peace, and prosperity for the Southeast Asian region. On October 1, 2007, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the U.S. Department of State launched a comprehensive program to support the integration of the ASEAN Community across its three pillars: Political-Security, Economic and Socio-Cultural.

This program, called ADVANCE, delivers targeted, quick response technical assistance on a regional, subregional, and bilateral level and is the main U.S. mechanism for supporting public and private sector integration among ASEAN Member States. Nathan Associates is managing five projects supporting ASEAN integration under ADVANCE:

ASEAN-US Technical Assistance and Training Facility Phase II provides technical assistance through the ASEAN Secretariat. The Facility has supported a wide variety of activities, including the ASEAN Regional Forum, the Human Rights Resource Center, and ASEAN’s response to Cyclone Nargis. Technical assistance, training, and policy assessments support blueprints for developing the ASEAN Community across all three pillars.

ASEAN Single Window (ASW) supports the development of a coordinated e-customs system for rapid clearance of goods and transparency in cross-border transactions. At the national level, the project supports the development of national single windows that consolidate and coordinate processing of documents required to import and export goods. It also supports the development of a regional single window for coordinating the flow of data among national single windows.

The VALUE project is providing technical assistance and other support to improve private sector economic integration across the region. The project supports the growth of supply chains in textiles and garments that transect multiple countries in ASEAN, particularly the developing economies of Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam and their linkages to the more developed ASEAN Member States.

The LUNA Lao Project provides line ministries and the National Assembly in Lao PDR with technical assistance and training to help them understand and support the Government of Lao PDR in liberalizing its trade and investment regime consistent with commitments under the U.S.-Lao PDR Bilateral Trade Agreement, its WTO accession program, and the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint.

The ASEAN MARKET project is strengthening ASEAN’s institutional platform for regional food security by involving the private sector and civil society in food security, supporting the harmonization of agrifood sector regulations, and improving the ability of the ASEAN Secretariat to monitor and evaluate food security programs.

The ADVANCE Consortium is well versed in ASEAN cultural, social, economic, political, and security issues having worked together and separately at the ASEAN Secretariat and with Member States. Composed of both U.S. and regional partners, the consortium has extensive experience implementing programs across the full range of priority areas for integration.


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