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The Regional Report on Needs and Gaps of Consumer Dispute Resolution in ASEAN

ASEAN , 30 September 2023

The ASEAN Committee on Consumer Protection (ACCP) launched the Regional Report on Needs and Gaps of Consumer Dispute Resolution in ASEAN. This regional report aims to provide information and analysis as a baseline to assist ASEAN Member States (AMS) in further developing their respective consumer dispute resolution and redress mechanisms.

The regional report undertook a comparative analysis of the similarities and differences among consumer dispute resolution and redress mechanisms in ASEAN.  It then assesses these existing mechanisms against international best practices and the changing needs of consumers and other relevant stakeholders.  It also identifies any remaining gaps and suggests areas for improvement, towards the long-term vision of having in place effective redress mechanisms within and across all AMS to deal with both domestic and cross-border consumer disputes.

The report contains several key parts, such as the different mechanisms of consumer dispute resolution and redress that exist in ASEAN, the major needs and gaps, and also existing international experiences such as the United Nations Guidelines on Consumer Protection (UNGCP), the OECD recommendation on consumer dispute resolution, and experiences of the European Union on ODR.  The report also includes country factsheets, which provide detailed information on consumer dispute resolution and the redress system of each AMS.

The development of the regional report is part of the ASEAN Strategic Action Plan on Consumer Protection (ASAPCP) 2025, and is in line with Principle 4 of the ASEAN High-Level Principle on Consumer Protection (AHLP) which requires consumers in ASEAN to “Have Access to Appropriate and Convenient Sources of Advice and Redress including Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)”. 

It is hoped that the regional report can be used by the ACCP to provide information to their stakeholders about the different types of consumer dispute resolution and redress mechanisms that are in place in ASEAN, point out or highlight any problems and/or challenges of these national systems as well as their remaining gaps for the handling of domestic and cross-border consumer Complaints and to formulate recommendations to policymakers.

The regional report was prepared with support by the Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, through the “Consumer Protection in ASEAN” (PROTECT) project funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) of Germany.  

To learn more about consumer protection in ASEAN, visit the ACCP Website at www.aseanconsumer.org.

Download the full report, here.

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