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The ASEAN Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Guidelines

ASEAN , 14 October 2021

The ASEAN Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Guidelines for Consumer Protection has been developed to assess the different approaches to ADR, the implementation in each ASEAN Member States (AMS), and the steps to establish and apply ADR mechanism effectively. The Guidelines take into consideration international and ASEAN best practices in ADR. This would set in place the right conditions for broadening economic growth, promoting competitive markets, and attracting cross-border investments in and across ASEAN as a whole.

The steady increase of cross-border trade within ASEAN has also prompted the region to adopt a harmonised and unified approach to ADR. The Guidelines is divided into the following areas: (1) Development of National Policies for ADR of Consumer Disputes; (2) Access to Justice; (3) Expertise, Independence and Impartiality; (4) Transparency; (5) Effectiveness; (6) Fairness and Due Process; (7) Legality; (8) Efficiency; (9) Partial Autonomy; and (10) Enforcement.

The development of the ADR guidelines is in line with initiative 1.5.1 under the ASEAN Strategic Action Plan on Consumer Protection (ASAPCP 2016-2025), specifically which is to “Develop guidelines for common approaches to ADRs including consideration of a mechanism for resolving consumer complaints through consumer groups”. 

The ACCP is ultimately looking to develop the ASEAN ODR Network by 2025. In addition to developing the Guidelines, the ACCP has undertaken a pilot testing of the ACCP Online Complaints Function which is embedded in the ACCP Website. It is expected to launch the function in early 2022.

The ASEAN ADR Guidelines can be downloaded here.

Download here