Capacity Building

As a leading think tank conducting quality research on numerous issues, and with its strong relations with governments in the region, ERIA is well positioned to implement a robust Capacity Building Programme (CBP). Focusing on Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam (the "CLMV" states), the CBP bridges the gap between research and national policy-making.

Capacity Building through ERIA Research

Integrating government officials in ERIA research teams allows officials to gain a stronger understanding of the complexities of an issue, comments from the perspective of a government’s needs, as well as allow participants to discuss the issue with their academic as well as government counterparts from the wider Asian region. Government officials are currently involved in four ERIA studies:

i) Reducing Unnecessary Regulatory Burdens

Many regulations are not crafted using established principles of good regulatory process. Undertaking a review of existing practices will identify the burdens of most concern for priority export sectors in participating countries. This study, to be completed in 2017, included a third and final workshop in November 2016.

ii) Industry 4.0: Empowering ASEAN for Circular Economy

The transition to a circular economy is a unique opportunity for fast growing CLMV economies to be resource efficient, competitive and innovative. The circular economy aims to eradicate wasteful use of raw materials and energy. A public-private dialogue, including CLMV officials, was held in June 2016 to review study draft chapters and for further discussions about the challenges and opportunities for how governments and corporations can strike a better balance between growth and resource efficiency stewardship. The stud will be completed in early 2017.

iii) Global Production Value Chain, Cities and Urban Amenities: Implications for Services Trade Liberalization in East Asia and ASEAN

This study examine how the development of cities creates urban networks and urban amenities, attracts and develops skills and human capital, resulting in the development and liberalization of the services sectors within the global production value chain in the Asian region. The project is expected to contribute to key policy discussions on the development of services liberalization and the development of services supply chain in the region.

iv) 21st Century Regionalism, Mega FTAs, and Asian Regional Integration

The study uses the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) as an example to investigate possible new rules and regulations in global governance from an Asian perspective. This study is also examining what new global standards will look like, the opportunities and challenges arising from them, and how inclusive global value chains can sustain growth The policy recommendations will be “gaps-orientated”, for example, identifying what actions countries need to undertake to implement the new global standards.

v) Distributional Effects of Disasters and Climate Change on Food Security

ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC) Blueprint and East Asia Summit (EAS) statements clearly recognize the need for concerted efforts to address the issue of disasters and climate change and their impacts on socio-economic development, health and the environment. As such, the objective of this study include to understand key food security challenges posed by disasters and climate change and the required actions taken by policy-makers to address these risks, to share experiences on adjustment of key planning instruments relating to the agriculture sector, and exchange experiences on successful adaptation measures across key vulnerable areas.

Increasing Understanding around ERIA Studies

ERIA has in-house expertise as well as a wide network of experts to support the development of technical assistance workshops for government officials. Workshops conducted and planned for 2016-2017 are:

i) Understanding Non-Tariff Measures: 16-18 February 2016

The implementation of non-tariff measures (NTM) is common but the purpose and difference with non-tariff barriers often misunderstood. Creating a clearer understanding about NTMs and how and when they can be used is of growing importance. This workshop was developed for officials from the CLMV countries to understand how to classify NTMs.

ii) Benefitting from Services Liberalization: 15-16 March 2016

This training will share ERIA's approach to analyzing services liberalization from an analytical and methodological approach. The analytical framework explains ASEAN Framework Agreement in Services (AFAS) within the context of services liberalization. Understanding this is critical for states to develop a liberalization plan or strategy.

iii) Pushing PPPs Forward: 27-28 June 2016

Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) are critical for mobilizing sufficient funding for key infrastructure projects that can help propel economic development. However, although a popular mechanism for funding for over two decades, PPPs are still problematic. At this workshop, participants discussed different models of Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) with a focus on more complex issues around PPPs including financial viability, economic viability and efficient risk allocation. There will be a follow-up workshop in 2017.

iv) FDI Restrictiveness Index: 25-26 May 2017

This workshop will invite five government officials from each of the CLMV states to attend. At the workshop participants will learn about best practices for creating FDI, and hear how the Index can contribute to policy-making.

Increased Research Capacity

The Economic Policy Modelling Workshop Series is implemented for young economists from state institutions to support them undertake economic modelling to support evidence based policy. ERIA has partnered with the Asia Growth Research Centre, Ngee Ann Kongsi Adelaide Educational Centre for the implementation of this.

In 2016-2017, this training series is being held in Lao PDR for officials from multiple ministries, under the coordination of the Ministry of Planning and Investment. The final event will be in May 2017 when the teams carrying out the best studies using the policy models will be awarded prizes.

National Policy Dialogues

National Policy Dialogues are a way to generate public inputs around seminal ERIA studies. Participants include senior government officials, the business sector, academia, national and international organisations, chambers of commerce and embassies. These events are attended by around 200 people.

In 2016, the National Policy Dialogues were held around the following themes:

The Executive Leaders’ Initiative

The Executive Leaders’ Initiative (ELI) is a three day meeting designed to bring Deputy Director Generals from different ministries from different countries together, giving them a unique opportunity to think about a common issue from multiple perspectives, and develop a common agenda to move forward.

The ELI meetings focus on agricultural issues. In December 2015 participants came together in Ha Noi and Da Lat, Viet Nam, Deputy to think around the theme, Developing Agricultural Value Chains in the Mekong Region. The participants met again in Bangkok in September 2016 to focus more specifically on Developing Domestic and Export Markets for Tropical Fruits, an area of great potential for the region.

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