Asian swap network nears completion

The ‘Chiang Mai’ initiative -- named after the city in Northern Thailand where the foundations of the plan were laid in May 2000 -- aims to provide Asian nations with access to a deep pool of FX reserves at short notice, giving central banks extra ammunition to deal with speculative currency attacks.

Bi-lateral FX swap agreements have been signed by nearly all participating nations -- the 10 members of the Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean) plus Japan, China and South Korea. The