What is the Executives' Meeting of East Asia and Pacific Central Banks (EMEAP)?

The Executives' Meeting of East Asia and Pacific Central Banks - EMEAP - is an organization of 11 central banks from the southeast and Pacific regions of Asia whose mandate is foster good relations among its member countries. The organization, which was established in 1991, conducts annual and semiannual meetings, and creates working groups in order to discuss and analyze ongoing economical and financial happenings within the region.

Current EMEAP activities are divided into three levels: firstly, the Governors’ Meetings; secondly, the Deputies’ Meetings and the Monetary and Financial Stability Committee (MFSC), of which the Deputies are members; and finally, the Working Groups. The Working Groups are, the WG on Payment and Settlement Systems (WG/PSS), the WG on Financial Markets (WG/FM), and the WG on Banking Supervision (WG/BS). In addition to these Working Groups, there is the IT Directors’ Meeting (ITDM).

Understanding the Executives' Meeting of East Asia and Pacific Central Banks (EMEAP)

An example of a project undertaken by the EMEAP is the creation of Asian bond funds. The organization believed that the debt markets in the region were vastly underdeveloped and as a result, relatively few investors were investing in the Asian bond markets compared to those in the West. The Asian bond funds were created to rectify this problem.

Member central banks include: the Reserve Bank of Australia, the People's Bank of China, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, the Indonesia Bank, the Bank of Japan, The Bank of Korea, the Bank Negara Malaysia, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Bank of Thailand.

EMEAP was established in 1991. According to the organizations, website, executive-level meetings were held twice a year for the informal exchange of information and discussion of ideas concerning economic and financial developments in the region. Frequent and regular contacts helped foster closer cooperation among member central banks, which paved the way for the further development of EMEAP.

In 1996, against the background of the increasing interdependence of member economies, the structure of EMEAP activities was strengthened. The first EMEAP Governors’ Meeting, hosted by the Bank of Japan, was held in Tokyo on July 19. During the meeting, two landmark decisions were reached: one, to hold Governors’ Meetings once a year; and two, to establish two Working Groups (the Financial Market Development WG and Central Banking Operations WG), and one study group (the Banking Supervision SG), to undertake studies on the primary functions of central banks.

The Asian Bond Fund (ABF) Initiative was a milestone in central bank cooperation in Asia. For the first time, EMEAP central banks and monetary authorities set aside a small part of their foreign reserves for collective investments into domestic bonds in Asia to broaden and deepen the Asian bond markets. In June 2003, EMEAP launched the first stage of ABF (ABF1), which invests in a basket of US dollar denominated bonds issued by Asian sovereign and quasi-sovereign issuers in EMEAP economies (excluding Australia, Japan and New Zealand). Building on the success of ABF1, EMEAP worked to extend the ABF concept to bonds denominated in local currencies and announced the launch of the second stage of ABF (ABF2) in December 2004.

Over the past decades, EMEAP has continually reviewed its direction and activities to ensure the work of the group consistently supports its overall goal of building greater regional cooperation. In this regard, the Monetary and Financial Stability Committee was established in 2007, which has been tasked to enhance the macro-monitoring and crisis management mechanisms of EMEAP.