By Chino S. Leyco, May 18, 2022; Manila Bulletin

Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said the Philippines is looking forward to future initiatives under the umbrella of the ASEAN Plus Three (China, Japan, Korea) cooperation to help accelerate the country’s shift from coal to sustainable energy sources.

On behalf of the Philippine government, Dominguez also expressed the country’s support for the activities of the ASEAN +3 finance ministers and central bank governors to intensify information exchange on innovative technologies and expand the digital economy across the region.

Transition finance refers to funding the costs of gradually moving away from the use of fossil fuels as communities journey their way to clean energy sources.

The ASEAN+3 monetary authorities have endorsed China’s new initiative on transition finance and its proposed workplan that aims to formulate region-specific principles on this area by starting with a survey to understand members’ needs, concerns, and recommendations.

“Overall, the Philippines is committed to engaging with the working committees to realize our shared goal of building a regional financial system that encourages transparency, harmonization of regulatory regimes, and broader-based capital markets,” Dominguez said.

The finance chief made the statement in his intervention during the discussion among his fellow finance ministers and governors on strengthening financial cooperation as part of the 25th ASEAN + 3 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting (AFMGM+3). Co-chaired by Cambodia and China, the 25th AFMGM+3 Meeting was convened virtually on May 12.

“The success of our initiatives on the financial front will be vital in enhancing the region’s resilience, inclusiveness, and integration as we all return to normalcy,” he added.

Dominguez is also President Duterte’s designated representative to the Philippines’ Climate Change Commission (CCC).

The ASEAN +3 Finance Cooperation comprises the countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)—Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam; and their partners Japan, Korea, and China.

This cooperation was established in 1999 as a means to strengthen policy dialogue, coordination and collaboration on financial, monetary and fiscal issues of common interest.

During the discussion, Dominguez also welcomed the progress achieved in the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralization (CMIM), and encouraged the ASEAN + 3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO) to work closely with ASEAN+3 Member Authorities.