SINGAPORE - Is it time for a common time zone in Asean?
Singapore strongly supports the idea, which it mooted some time ago, Foreign Minister K Shanmugam has said.
The issue was brought up again at the Asean Foreign Ministers' Retreat in Kota Kinabalu on Jan 28.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Malaysian Foreign Minister Anifah Aman said a common time zone for Asean capitals "is an idea worth considering".
It would be in line with the formation of an integrated Asean Community, and airline operations and stock market activities could be better co-ordinated, he said.
When asked by the media what he thought of it, Mr Shanmugam said: "Asean today is the seventh largest economy in the world with 600 million people, (with a) GDP of more than two trillion dollars and anything that helps businesses integrate, move goods, services, work with each other seamlessly, will help the man in the street."
He added that the discussions were at a "very preliminary level", but all the parties there supported it. He also pointed out that the details need to be worked out, such as which time zone to choose.