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Last updated: Monday, December 17, 2018


APEC Needs New Momentum to Sustain Dynamism in Asia-Pacific

Posted: Friday, October 27, 2017

With the desire of turning APEC into a beacon of openness, inclusivity and innovation, members of the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) gathered in Toronto, Ontario, Canada in late July 2017 to discuss and send recommendations to APEC economies on business priorities in the region.

At this third meeting session, ABAC appreciated the positive effects of the rules-based world trading system and open markets. As a result, livelihoods of people in APEC member economies have been significantly improved. At the meeting, ABAC agreed that “Our long-term vision of a more open and integrated APEC region is not an end in itself. It is driven by our conviction that this will deliver sustainable and inclusive growth for our communities.”

Trade liberalisation has generated enormous social benefits, particularly helping 700 million people escape from poverty. In the past 28 years, APEC has helped boost the economic growth of its members by more than five times. Trade liberalisation is the most apparent signal of the formation and execution of ambitious regional trade agreements. Regional trade agreements, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Agreement and the Pacific Alliance, create new jobs and ensure food security for the region, promote trade in the future and lay the supporting foundation for the formation of the Asia Pacific Free Trade Area. Therefore, ABAC thought that APEC should take concrete steps towards making FTAAP a reality in the coming time.

Given global economic recovery but uncertainty and reviving global trade, ABAC appealed to APEC leaders to create new momentum to sustain the dynamism of the Asia-Pacific region. With the leading principle of openness, inclusiveness and innovation, ABAC compiled the Report 2017 and made recommendations towards a more open and integrated APEC to promote sustainable and innovative growth and bring benefits for all communities in the region. This report was submitted to the President of Vietnam by ABAC Vietnam.

Main contents of ABAC's recommendations include:
As for regional economic integration, ABAC recommends that APEC member economies support the multilateral trading system; promote FTAAP; further pursue new Service Agenda; remove non-tariff barriers; facilitate trade and investment; and build the APEC Vision beyond 2020.

As for physical, institutional and people-to-people connectivity, ABAC believes that it is important to support the APEC connectivity programme; upgrade digital and internet connectivity; facilitate the movement of skilled labour and build quality workforce; and particularly strengthen the participation of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the global market through digital economy and e-commerce.

As for sustainable development, innovation, inclusivity, MSME support and economic empowerment of women, the ABAC Report recommends strengthening innovative business model; facilitating MSMEs to access financial resources; facilitating women to engage in economic activities; and promoting economic, financial and social inclusivity.

ABAC highly values the APEC Vietnam 2017 and hopes to witness many initiatives to create the most favourable business environment for the regional business community towards sustainable, innovative and inclusive development for the APEC community.

Hoang Van Dung
Chairman of ABAC Vietnam

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