The Governments of Brunei Darussalam, the Kingdom of Cambodia, the Republic of Indonesia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), Malaysia, the Union of Myanmar, the Republic of the Philippines, the Republic of Singapore, the Kingdom of Thailand and the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam, Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (hereinafter collectively referred to as “Member States” or singularly as “Member State”):
RECALLING the Leaders’ decision to establish the ASEAN Community, comprising three pillars, namely the ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC), the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC), made in the Declaration of ASEAN Concord II signed on 7 October 2003 in Bali, Indonesia, and in the ASEAN Charter signed  on 20 November 2007 in Singapore;
DETERMINED to realise the goals of establishing ASEAN as a single market and production base characterised by free flow of goods, services, investment, skilled labour and freer flow of capital envisaged in the ASEAN Charter and the Declaration on the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint signed by the Leaders on 20 November 2007 in Singapore;
RECOGNISING the significant achievements and contribution of the existing ASEAN economic agreements and instruments in various areas in facilitating free flow of goods in the region, including the Agreement on ASEAN Preferential Trading Arrangements (1977), the Agreement on the Common Effective Preferential Tariff Scheme for the ASEAN Free Trade Area (1992), the ASEAN Agreement on Customs (1997), the ASEAN Framework Agreement on Mutual Recognition Arrangements (1998), the e-ASEAN Framework Agreement (2000), the Protocol Governing the Implementation of the ASEAN Harmonised Tariff Nomenclature (2003), the ASEAN Framework Agreement for the Integration of Priority Sectors (2004), the Agreement to Establish and Implement the ASEAN Single Window (2005); 
DESIRING to move forward by developing a comprehensive ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement which is built upon the commitments under the existing ASEAN economic agreements to provide a legal framework to realise free flow of goods in the region; 
CONFIDENT that a comprehensive ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement would minimise barriers and deepen economic linkages among Member States, lower business costs, increase trade, investment and economic efficiency, create a larger market with greater opportunities and larger economies of scale for the businesses of Member States and create and maintain a competitive investment area;
RECOGNISING the different stages of economic development between and among Member States and the need to address the development gaps and facilitate increasing participation of the  Member States, especially  Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Viet Nam, in the AEC through the provision of flexibility and technical and development co-operation;
RECOGNISING FURTHER the provisions of the ministerial declarations of the World Trade Organization on measures in favour of least-developed countries;
ACKNOWLEDGING  the important role and contribution of the business sector in enhancing trade and investment among Member States and the need to further promote and facilitate their participation through the various ASEAN business associations in the realisation of the ASEAN Economic Community; and
RECOGNISING the role of regional trade arrangements as a catalyst in accelerating regional and global trade liberalisation and trade facilitation and as building blocks in the framework of the multilateral trading system;
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