The Asian Development Bank (ADB) extends its warmest greetings and congratulations to the ASEAN Capital Markets Forum (ACMF) on the successful hosting of its 37th Chairs Meeting and International Conference on October 27-28, 2022, in Phnom Penh.

The ADB also extends its congratulations to the Securities and Exchange Regulator of Cambodia (SERC) for its able Chairmanship of the ACMF for 2022, and for carrying forward the initiatives under the ACMF Action Plan 2021-2025 and the Roadmap for ASEAN Sustainable Capital Markets.

In particular, we congratulate the ACMF on the launch of the ASEAN Sustainability-Linked Bond Standards, ASEAN Sustainable and Responsible Fund Standards, ASEAN CIS Digital Repository and the Legal Wrappers for the SDG Bond Toolkit.

We note that these and other ACMF initiatives have benefited from the long-standing Technical Assistance provided by the ADB to the ACMF and affirm our continued support for the ACMF’s Vision 2025 Strategic Objectives of (i) enhancing ASEAN connectivity, (ii) promoting inclusiveness and (iii) strengthening the orderliness and resilience of ASEAN capital markets.

Indeed, even as the ASEAN region continues to recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the role of capital markets and capital market regulators cannot be overestimated.

As noted in the recent Asian Development Outlook 2022 Update, Southeast Asia is expected to experience healthy GDP growth of 5.1 per cent in 2022 and 5.0 per cent in 2023.

However, this recovery faces continuing headwinds from, among other things, rising inflation (5.2 per cent in 2022, 4.1 per cent in 2023), a sharp deceleration in global growth, continued supply-chain disruptions, and stronger-than-expected monetary policy tightening in advanced economies.

Against this backdrop, the ACMF’s goal of promoting integrated, inclusive, resilient, competitive and sustainable capital markets continues to have the ADB’s full support.