[ASEAN] ATTIA Comments on ASEAN Digital Economy Framework Agreement (DEFA)

On May 17th 2023, ATTIA provided its comments to the ASEAN Secretariat on the proposed ASEAN Digital Economy Framework Agreement (DEFA), as part of a consultation workshop in Bangkok, Thailand.

Download our submission here.

Background: ATTIA’s Members play an outsized role in directing inbound tourism to the ASEAN region, as well as within it. They drive economic and labor market growth in the aviation, hospitality, tourism, and transportation industries of ASEAN Member States (AMS). Over the past decade, ATTIA’s Members have also helped make AMS tourism markets more inclusive to a wider range of firms and entrepreneurs, thereby making the industry a source of economic resilience and sustainable growth.

As technology companies and platforms, ATTIA’s Members also operate within multiple domestic digital regulation environments across the ASEAN region. Given the differing regulatory approaches currently practiced by AMS (e.g., on cross-border data portability, e-commerce, digital taxation, competition), ATTIA’s Members see an opportunity for the ASEAN Digital Economy Framework Agreement (DEFA) to play a key policy alignment function in important digital regulation areas.

As companies with global footprints, ATTIA’s Members have taken part in consultation efforts for major digital regulation instruments, such as the EU Digital Services Act (DSA), Digital Markets Act (DMA), and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Consequently, we are eager to contribute our observations and recommendations on how the DEFA could best fulfill the ASEAN Secretariat’s goal of accelerating digital economy growth and cooperation in the region.