Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — Promoting trade and investment and reforming the investment climate in APEC member economies were discussed at the Investment Experts’ Group (IEG) meeting held in HCM City on Monday as part of the ongoing third APEC Senior Officials’ Meeting and related meetings.
The two-day meeting held under the aegis of the Committee of Trade and Investment saw officials from 21 APEC members and experts from international organizations take part.
“One of the big topics is of course the examination of the next generation’s trade investment issues, which is something that APEC members identify as the issue for the future, and we are going to look at them from the investment perspective,” IEG convener Maxim Berdichevsky, said.
He told Việt Nam News: “It’s bringing consistency and harmonisation to the investment regime within APEC, and I think it’s part of what we are discussing here. They have to respond to domestic priorities, but we want to make it easy for investors to move their capital within the region to optimise the supply chain and investment.”
At the meeting, participants focused on how to improve the investment climate in the Asia-Pacific region and discussed the latest domestic investment policy approaches to improving the investment climate.
Australia proposed sharing experiences related to foreign investment with a particular focus on engagement with internal (business, government and wider community) and external (investors, foreign governments) stakeholders.
It shared its experiences and the processes it is using to develop a whole-of-government community strategy.
Japan shared its review of multi-year plans for infrastructure development and investment.
Mexico presented its latest investment policy approaches to improve the investment climate.
Peru presented its programme for capacity building in investor-state dispute settlement management.
Other issues discussed at the meeting included infrastructure investment, an investment facilitation action plan, investment policy dialogue, and public-private partnership.
Speaking to Việt Nam News, a western delegate who asked not to be named said: “I think it is an important part of APEC’s agenda, which is to promote trade and investment liberalisation. In this meeting we cover a range of different investment-related issues.
“I will talk about communicating the benefits of investment to the broader community and that will help the community understand and inform them how infrastructure can help benefit the economy and also address misconceptions where people might have different views about investment.”
“When members get together to share their experiences about what is happening in their economies, it could be beneficial for APEC economies. So in general, I understand that it has been quite good and fruitful.”
Thái Thu Phương, IEG’s vice chairman, said the meeting was a good chance for Việt Nam to learn from other members, especially about issues relating to public-private partnership and investor-state dispute settlement management.
Asked about how Việt Nam can attract more investment, Berdichevsky said: “For economies looking to attract investment, both international and domestic, it’s important to have a transparent and predictable trade framework.”
Stephen Thomsen, head of Investment Policy Reviews, Investment Division, Directorate for Financial and Enterprise Affairs of OECD, said: “Việt Nam has already done a lot over the years. The new investment law is a good improvement. It’s only the question of implementation. To make sure the laws are implemented consistently and transparently is the challenge. But Việt Nam has made a lot of progress in its legislative framework for investment.” — VNS