ASEAN trade leaders sign pact to grow e-commerce

Pia Ranada
ASEAN trade leaders sign pact to grow e-commerce
The 10 Southeast Asian nations agree to work together to make online shopping and other electronic transactions safer and more efficient

MANILA, Philippines – In a bid to encourage the growth of electronic commerce in Southeast Asia, trade leaders of the region’s 10 member countries signed a deal to cooperate in making electronic transactions safe and more efficient.

The ASEAN Agreement on Electronic Commerce was signed on Monday, November 12, a day before the opening ceremony of the 33rd ASEAN Summit and Related Summits in Singapore.

This was announced by Philippine Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez on Tuesday during a press conference.

The agreement aims to “institute rules that govern e-commerce” for a more conducive environment for online transactions, ultimately to the benefit of Southeast Asian companies in the growing industry.

Lopez said ASEAN countries would help each other in harmonizing standards and rules on paperless trading, electronic authentication, and electronic signature acceptance, among others.

The agreement will also see ASEAN countries working together to improve consumer protection, data privacy, and legal and regulatory frameworks governing e-commerce. –

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Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada is a senior reporter for Rappler covering Philippine politics and environmental issues. For tips and story suggestions, email her at