Also aiding sentiment in broader markets, Wall Street futures rose after U.S. President Donald Trump unveiled a plan to re-open its economy with a staggered, three-stage approach. [.N]
"This will be a test of steady hands and level heads in calibrating the opening of the economy triumph over the risk of crippling second wave of infections, " Mizuho Bank said in a note.
Markets appeared to shrug off data that showed China's economy shrank for the first time since at least 1992 in the first quarter, although it expects second-quarter performance to be much better than in the first.
Leading gains, the Philippine index rebounded from the previous session's steep fall and added as much as 4.4% after its central bank cut its key interest rate by 50 bps to support its economy damaged by the outbreak.
Heavyweight conglomerates SM Investments and Ayala Land gained around 5%, each.
In Singapore, the benchmark index gained as much as 2.3%, and hit its highest level in over a month. Its annual exports growth accelerated by 17.6% in March, beating expectations.
Thai shares climbed up to 2.8%, underpinned by gains in financial and energy sectors.
Indonesian equities rose as much as 3%, with financials leading gains. PT Bank Central Asia Tbk and PT Bank Mandiri (Persero) Tbk rose 3.8% and 5%, respectively.
Shares in Malaysia climbed 1.9% higher and touched their highest level in over a month.
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS AS AT 0331 GMT
Change on the
Market Current Previous Pct Move
Singapore 2654.52 2612.25 1.62
Bangkok 1224.65 1200.15 2.04
Manila 5724.13 5525.6 3.59
Jakarta 4602.671 4480.607 2.72
Kuala Lumpur 1412.14 1386.53 1.85
Ho Chi Minh 784.93 780.7 0.54
Change so far
Market Current End 2019 Pct Move
Singapore 2654.52 3222.83 -17.63
Bangkok 1224.65 1579.84 -22.48
Manila 5724.13 7,815.26 -26.76
Jakarta 4602.671 6,299.54 -26.94
Kuala Lumpur 1412.14 1588.76 -11.12
Ho Chi Minh 784.93 960.99 -18.32
(Reporting by Arundhati Dutta; editing by Uttaresh.V)
By Arundhati Dutta