Some of the long-standing regional cooperation and integration initiatives were born in the Southeast Asian region. That spirit of cooperation continues to remain strong. On 14 April 2020, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) leaders had a virtual summit where they agreed to work together closely to combat COVID-19 and committed to collective actions to mitigate the economic and social impact of the crisis.
It is critical to fully sustain the spirit of regional cooperation in the recovery and any transformation process, and to continuously share information on national policy responses with a view to harmonizing them and facilitating learning. The national economic recovery and transformation strategies must incorporate emerging regional and global imperatives and priorities. The Southeast Asia developing member countries have much to gain by taking coordinated actions to ensure that adequate complementarities continue to exist among the economies.
ADB supports capacity-building initiatives in the region through three subregional programs: Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), Brunei Darussalam–Indonesia–Malaysia–Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA), and the Indonesia–Malaysia–Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT).