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ASEAN's growth less likely to be affected by U.S., EU credit woes: Malaysian regulator

(Xinhua)

14:36, August 20, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug. 20 (Xinhua) -- As global stock markets tumbled over the week in response to the U.S. credit woes and the Europe debt crisis, Malaysia's Securities Commission chairman, Zarinah Anwar holds a positive view that markets in Southeast Asia is strong enough to fend off the crisis.

Southeast Asian stock markets tumbled on Friday, with index heavyweights coming under selling pressure -- Indonesia suffered its biggest fall in two weeks shedding 4.4 percent.

Singapore stock declined 3.2 percent while stocks in Malaysia and Thailand ended the day with slightly less than 2 percent. The Philippines and Vietnam declined 1.45 percent and 0.5 percent respectively.

"Naturally our markets are going to be affected by the sentiments," Zarinah told Xinhua

"You can see our markets are very choppy, moving very much in tandem with what's happening in the U.S. and Europe after the S & P's downgrade, sovereign rating market coming down quite sharply and we see poor economic data coming from the U.S. and Europe," she added.

"But Fundamentally we are sound. For example, Malaysia's Central Bank just reaffirmed the Gross Domestic Demand growth at five to six percent for this year," she said.

"Domestic demand is still strong and ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nation) has to continue to look at its neighbours to pick up selective demands that may arise as a result of the economic woes in our traditional export markets," she aded.

ASEAN's effort towards an integrated regional economy, with 2015 as a deadline, also contributed to ASEAN's sound environment.

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