Asian countries may finalise a plan for a joint US$80-billion (Bt2.77 trillion) currency-support fund in December, signalling improved regional coordination, Asean secretary-general Surin Pitsuwan.
He made his remarks during a trip to Beijing to attend the biennial Asia-Europe Meeting.
The creation of the fund, provided mainly by China, Japan and South Korea, reflects the lessons learned from the Asian financial crisis a decade ago, he said.
Asia is "facing the challenges together rather than running away individually, and that is a community emerging for East Asia", Surin said in Beijing. "If we can take care of ourselves as a region, it will already be a contribution to the international system."
A decade ago, a regional banking crisis threw Asia's economies into recession and forced Thailand, Indonesia and South Korea to seek more than $100 billion in loans from the International Monetary Fund.
The region's leaders must shore up confidence that it can withstand this crisis, Surin said.
"The region needs a psychological buffer as much as a buffer in reality," he said. That the crisis this time "is coming from outside is a testimony to the fact that we are quite resilient."
China, the world's largest holder of foreign currency, was expected to be pressed to get more involved in combating the global financial crisis at the biennial summit of Asian and European leaders.
European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said he would use the meeting in Beijing to press China to support new financial rules. Thailand will ask China to ease currency-conversion restrictions and South Korea has suggested moving more quickly to create the $80 billion fund.