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Making ASEAN Trade In Services 4.0: IR4.0 Programme For Young Professionals

2 September 2023

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Lombok, 2–6 September 2023: The Making ASEAN Trade In Services 4.0: IR4.0 Programme For Young Professionals workshop, held both in-person in Lombok, Indonesia, and online, brought together over 40 participants from 10 ASEAN Member States. The event aimed to equip professionals with the tools and knowledge needed to navigate the evolving landscape of the services sector in the age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).

The workshop was held over five days, each dedicated to exploring various facets of 4IR technology and its applications in the services sector. It began with an overview of the fundamentals and application of 4IR on day 1; followed by a deep dive into selected critical enablers of 4IR, including big data analytics (BDA) and artificial intelligence (AI) on day 2. Day 3 continued with a focus on selected critical enablers such as cloud computing and augmented reality. On day 4, the discussion shifted toward the critical aspect of cybersecurity and data analytics for optimal operation. The final day featured group work sessions, focusing on the successful implementation of 4IR in business and organisations, including systems integration.

This workshop was timely, given the recent challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, which accelerated the adoption of 4IR technology in the services sector. The pandemic highlighted the importance of adapting to new technologies, especially in an industry where the quality of services is paramount. Understanding and embracing 4IR is crucial for the sector's continued growth and resilience. The need for a structured, value-driven approach was emphasized throughout, as technology alone is insufficient without the capacity and resources of ASEAN professionals.

The event was opened by Ari Satria, Secretary of the Directorate General of International Trade Negotiation of Indonesia's Ministry of Trade, and Dr Intan M Ramli, Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and South Asia (ERIA) Senior Policy Fellow. It concluded with closing remarks by Basaria Tiara L Gaol, Chairperson of the ASEAN Coordinating Committee on Services (CCS) for 2022-2023. In her remarks, she stressed the importance of embracing 4IR technology to enhance the supply of services within the ASEAN region. She noted that the knowledge and skills acquired during the workshop will play a pivotal role in ensuring the continued growth and competitiveness of the services sector across ASEAN.

As ASEAN continues to navigate the challenges and opportunities presented by the Fourth Industrial Revolution, this programme hopes to provide a valuable platform for professionals to acquire the skills and knowledge needed to thrive in this dynamic and rapidly evolving landscape. This, in turn, will help ensure the region is well-positioned to harness the potential of 4IR technology and reinvigorate the supply of services for years to come.

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