ASEAN-BAC and ACN advance responsible and inclusive business agenda

The ASEAN Responsible Business Forum was held from 27 to 28 August 2018 in Singapore. This flagship event of the ASEAN CSR Network (ACN) aims to enhance understanding of the role of responsible and inclusive business in creating an inclusive, resilient and sustainable ASEAN community.

The Forum was attended by 180 key representatives from the private sector, governments, civil society and academia from the region and beyond, as they engaged in high-level discussions, unpacking what it means for business to be responsible and inclusive, identifying practical strategies and sharing best practices that can be scaled up and applied across the region.

Discussions centred around the key challenges faced by ASEAN, including business integrity and anti-corruption, business and human rights, financial inclusion, micro, small and medium-sized enterprise (MSME) development, climate change and environmental sustainability.

Other Forum highlights included the Singapore launch of AMEN or the ASEAN Mentorship for Entrepreneurs Network, which seeks to empower MSMEs in the region to scale up through mentorship by a pool of entrepreneurs, business practitioners and academics.

Guest-of-Honour Mr Liang Eng Hwa, Chairman of Government Parliamentary Committee for Finance and Trade, Singapore Parliament, delivered the keynote address at the Forum.


The ASEAN Mentorship for Entrepreneurs Network was launched in Singapore with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between ACN and ASEAN-BAC. Present at the signing were (from left) Ms Yanti Triwadiantini, Chair of ACN, Mr Thomas Thomas, CEO of ACN, Mr Jose Ma A. Concepcion III, Presidential Advisor for Entrepreneurship, Philippines and AMEN Legacy Champion, Dr Robert Yap, Chair of ASEAN-BAC.

Also presented at the Forum were the results of a 2018 study on Corporate Disclosure on Business Integrity in ASEAN, which assessed the business integrity disclosure levels across five ASEAN countries, and compared the results against the findings of a baseline study conducted in 2016.

In addition, an interactive Workshop on Business and Human Rights was held where participants were introduced to the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and how they could provide a useful framework for companies to manage human rights in their supply chain.

The ASEAN Responsible Business Forum was co-organised by ACN and the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC). ACN was appointed the sector-champion for Responsible and Inclusive Business with the ASEAN-BAC in early 2018.

The Forum was supported by the Swedish Government through its Embassy in Bangkok and the following corporate sponsors – Intel, China Navigation, Swire Pacific Offshore, Singtel, City Developments Limited and Suntory.

Read more below:

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Management must set the tone for a culture of business ethics and integrity

Impact of business on climate and human rights the focus of Day 2 of ASEAN Responsible Business Forum

Download the Post-Forum Report here.