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Standards Australia celebrates five years of the ASEAN-Australia Digital Trade Standards Initiative

March 5, 2024

Statements

Standards Australia is proud to announce the five-year milestone of the ASEAN-Australia Digital Trade Standards (DTS) Initiative. This leaders-level initiative was launched in March 2018 by the then-Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit.

The initiative aims to raise awareness about the role of international standards in enabling digital trade across the region and Australia. This is particularly important as digital trade is anticipated to be a major driver of economic growth for the region, with the expectation to triple ASEAN’s economy to US$2 trillion by 2030.

International standards can play a crucial role in this growth, as they can act as an enabler of digital trade by promoting the adoption of technology that aligns with an open, secure, and accessible ICT environment. Moreover, they address issues such as security, privacy, interoperability and efficiency across the supply chain. The influence of these standards is extensive, impacting areas from digital payments to cybersecurity. Thus, the DTS Initiative marks a significant step towards a digitally integrated future.

Reflecting on the last 5 years

Over the past five years, Standards Australia has made significant progress in promoting digital trade in order to increase ASEAN Member States’ (AMS) engagement with international standards on digital trade, encouraging more AMS to contribute to international standards development and adopting standards for use in their territories.

The ASEAN-Australia Digital Trade Standards Recommendations Report, published by Standards Australia in 2018, set the direction for the initiative through ten key recommendations to boost ASEAN’s engagement with digital trade standards.

Since then, Standards Australia has launched the ASEAN-Australia DTS Fellowship, connecting emerging experts with established mentors, to deliver action plans that unlock opportunities in the region through digital trade standards. To date, experts from Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Brunei, Malaysia, Cambodia, Lao, and Timor-Leste have completed the program.

Standards Australia has also provided training to more than 500 participants from across the region.

Outcomes and impact

During the five-year period of the initiative, the importance of digital trade and standards has grown substantially as a priority for ASEAN.

Following the publication of the recommendations report, ASEAN established the Digital Trade Standards Conformance Working Group (DTSCWG), which is now the largest working group in ASEAN, playing a key role in promoting and harmonising digital trade standards amongst AMS.

AMS have stepped up their representation in international standards for digital trade by joining 15 new standards committees at ISO and IEC and by adopting international standards related to cybersecurity, data sharing, data privacy and protection, digital transactions, digital logistics, IoT, and cloud computing.

ASEAN’s increased commitment to use digital trade to fuel economic growth is reflected in the recently published Digital Economy Framework Agreement (DEFA) that sets out an ambitious roadmap for a regional approach to digital trade.

Clare McGrath, Senior Manager International Engagement at Standards Australia, said: “As we mark five years of dedicated work, we remain committed to supporting and enabling digital trade through international standards, fostering better engagement in international standards by AMS and their national standards bodies, and promoting greater adoption of priority digital trade standards by AMS.”

Contact
Communications Department
Standards Australia celebrates five years of the ASEAN-Australia Digital Trade Standards Initiative
Email and link here
Standards Australia is proud to announce the five-year milestone of the ASEAN-Australia Digital Trade Standards (DTS) Initiative. This leaders-level initiative was launched in March 2018 by the then-Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit.

The initiative aims to raise awareness about the role of international standards in enabling digital trade across the region and Australia. This is particularly important as digital trade is anticipated to be a major driver of economic growth for the region, with the expectation to triple ASEAN’s economy to US$2 trillion by 2030.

International standards can play a crucial role in this growth, as they can act as an enabler of digital trade by promoting the adoption of technology that aligns with an open, secure, and accessible ICT environment. Moreover, they address issues such as security, privacy, interoperability and efficiency across the supply chain. The influence of these standards is extensive, impacting areas from digital payments to cybersecurity. Thus, the DTS Initiative marks a significant step towards a digitally integrated future.

Reflecting on the last 5 years

Over the past five years, Standards Australia has made significant progress in promoting digital trade in order to increase ASEAN Member States’ (AMS) engagement with international standards on digital trade, encouraging more AMS to contribute to international standards development and adopting standards for use in their territories.

The ASEAN-Australia Digital Trade Standards Recommendations Report, published by Standards Australia in 2018, set the direction for the initiative through ten key recommendations to boost ASEAN’s engagement with digital trade standards.

Since then, Standards Australia has launched the ASEAN-Australia DTS Fellowship, connecting emerging experts with established mentors, to deliver action plans that unlock opportunities in the region through digital trade standards. To date, experts from Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Brunei, Malaysia, Cambodia, Lao, and Timor-Leste have completed the program.

Standards Australia has also provided training to more than 500 participants from across the region.

Outcomes and impact

During the five-year period of the initiative, the importance of digital trade and standards has grown substantially as a priority for ASEAN.

Following the publication of the recommendations report, ASEAN established the Digital Trade Standards Conformance Working Group (DTSCWG), which is now the largest working group in ASEAN, playing a key role in promoting and harmonising digital trade standards amongst AMS.

AMS have stepped up their representation in international standards for digital trade by joining 15 new standards committees at ISO and IEC and by adopting international standards related to cybersecurity, data sharing, data privacy and protection, digital transactions, digital logistics, IoT, and cloud computing.

ASEAN’s increased commitment to use digital trade to fuel economic growth is reflected in the recently published Digital Economy Framework Agreement (DEFA) that sets out an ambitious roadmap for a regional approach to digital trade.

Clare McGrath, Senior Manager International Engagement at Standards Australia, said: “As we mark five years of dedicated work, we remain committed to supporting and enabling digital trade through international standards, fostering better engagement in international standards by AMS and their national standards bodies, and promoting greater adoption of priority digital trade standards by AMS.”

Contact
Communications Department
communications@standards.org.au
communications@standards.org.au
Adam Stingemore
Chief Development Officer
+61 2 9237 6086
Jess Dunne
Communications Manager
+ 61 2 9237 6381