The ASEAN Integration Monitoring Office (AIMO) was established in 2010 to strengthen the monitoring of regional economic integration in ASEAN. Within the current ASEAN Secretariat organisational structure, AIMO is attached to the office of the Deputy Secretary-General for the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The ambit of AIMO’s work presently includes:
- Monitoring the progress of economic integration in ASEAN based on the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Blueprint, as well as providing relevant technical analysis and policy advice to ASEAN Senior Economic Officials (e.g. in the form of ASEAN Integration Monitoring Reports and the compliance monitoring of AMS commitments in the context of the AEC Blueprint);
- Providing technical analysis and policy advice on macroeconomic developments and emerging economic policy issues in the ASEAN region (e.g. in the form of ASEAN Surveillance Reports); and
- Rendering technical support to ASEAN sectorial bodies, as requested (e.g. in the form of policy briefing papers, technical non-papers and specific analysis).
But AIMO’s role post-2015 will depend on, among others, the recommendations of the High Level Task Force (HLTF) on Strengthening the ASEAN Secretariat and Reviewing the ASEAN Organs, the work on ASEAN Community’s post-2015 Vision, both of which will be discussed at the 25th ASEAN Summit and related meetings in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar on 12-13 November 2014.
The monitoring work of AIMO is the most relevant to COMPASS, starting with the monitoring of progress and outcomes in the realisation of a Single ASEAN Market and Production Base (AEC Pillar 1).
The scope of COMPASS’ assistance will initially focus on thematic monitoring and evaluation of specific work programmes under this Pillar.
Going forward, the focus would be broadened to components of other Pillars as required by AIMO and informed by AIMO’s role post-2015.
In the course of the 6-month Project inception period (June–November 2014), COMPASS has already been supporting AIMO with an initial in-depth review of progress on the four natural resource-based priority integration sectors (PIS), namely wood-based products, rubber-based products, agro-based products and fisheries,.
The outputs of this work will be used as inputs to the thematic chapter on PIS in the 2015 ASEAN Integration Report (AIR). A preliminary draft of the 2015 AIR, focusing on Pillar 1, will be submitted to the ASEAN Finance Ministers at their annual meeting in March 2015. Additional inputs may be required in the development of the expanded final version of the Report for submission to the ASEAN Economic Ministers’ Meeting later in 2015.
During the implementation period of the COMPASS Project, AIMO plans to undertake further surveillance reports on specific issues, for which assistance from COMPASS is being sought. These future undertakings are the likely mainstays of the COMPASS Overall Work Programme (OWP), in addition to assistance on institutional and capacity building for AIMO monitoring work more generally.
More detailed integration indicators should be developed in the course of this work, as well as further analysis to provide conclusions and policy recommendations, which may be elevated to the appropriate ASEAN bodies to help improve the linkages between the various planning, implementation, reporting, monitoring and evaluation activities required to realise the AEC, which ultimately, should foster enhanced regional economic integration.