Asean+3 upgrades finance body

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Asean plus Japan, China and South Korea on Friday signed an agreement to upgrade their Asean+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (Amro) to an international organisation in the future.

Amro, an independent surveillance unit based in Singapore to monitor regional economic and financial conditions, will be raised to the same level as financial institutions such as the Asian Development Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

Established in April 2011, Amro is expected to play a key role in overseeing the operation of the Chiang Mai initiative multilateralisation — a multilateral currency swap scheme launched in 2010 to tackle a lack of credit liquidity in financial markets at times of unusual volatility.

An agreement among the same 13 East Asian countries took effect in July to double the funds of the Chiang Mai Initiative to $240 billion, in a bid to prevent a reoccurrence of the Asian currency crisis in the late 1990s.

Source: Bangkok Post