ASEAN Plus 3 to Launch Emergency Financing Facility

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Masato Kanda, vice finance minister for international affairs

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Japan, China, South Korea and the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations agreed Thursday to launch a lending facility to respond to natural disasters and pandemics based on their Chiang Mai Initiative currency swap arrangement.

The decision was made at a two-day meeting of deputies to the finance ministers and central bank governors of the 13-nation group known as ASEAN Plus Three held in Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, central Japan, from Wednesday.

After the meeting, Japan and Indonesia issued a co-chairs’ joint statement.

The ASEAN Plus Three group decided to create the emergency financing facility in line with a proposal Japan made because the Chiang Mai Initiative arrangement was not utilized during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Details of the planned facility will be finalized next May at a minister-level meeting.

“ASEAN Plus Three members have been craving a facility capable of responding speedily to demand for funds,” Masato Kanda, Japanese vice finance minister for international affairs, told a press conference. “Japan will give its maximum support to realize it as soon as possible.”