Việt Nam has proposed four priorities for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum that it is hosting this year: sustainable and inclusive growth, regional economic integration, promotion of small and medium business and improving food security. — VNA/VNS Photo Doãn Tấn
KHÁNH HÒA – Việt Nam has proposed four priorities for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum that it is hosting this year: sustainable and inclusive growth, regional economic integration, promotion of small and medium business and improving food security. The goals were laid out yesterday by Vietnamese Permanent Deputy Foreign Minister Bùi Thanh Sơn at the first session of senior APEC representatives in the coastal Vietnamese city of Nha Trang.
Regarding sustainable, innovative and inclusive growth, Sơn said, structural reform and innovation play a significant role in bolstering growth and improving productivity. Human resource development, education, lifelong learning and re-skilling in particular, will be crucial to ensure all segments of society can participate in the workforce and benefit from the technological revolution.
It is important for APEC to accelerate the realisation of the Bogor Goals of free and open trade and investment in Asia Pacific with a new sense of urgency, he added. Sơn stressed that the APEC members need to reaffirm support for the multilateral trading system and implement the Lima Declaration on the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP). It is also important to continue implementation of the APEC Connectivity Blueprint, enhance global value chains and supporting industries, and facilitate cross-border e-commerce, investment and services.
Creating dynamism for micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) is a key driver of the region’s growth, as such business account for about 97 percent of the total number of APEC businesses. APEC members should seek ways to make value chains more inclusive, with greater participation of MSMEs, focus on creating a more enabling business environment for MSMEs in the digital age and promote start-ups and innovative MSMEs, Son said.
The transfer and application of technology will be crucial to improving agricultural productivity and resilience to climate change. APEC members will need to collaborate to manage resources, including water, while pursuing existing efforts related to the food market and sustainable and inclusive development of rural areas, Son said.
The four priorities of APEC 2017 include many cross-cutting issues, which require close collaboration among relevant APEC committees, working groups and forums.
The APEC forum includes 21 members - Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong (China), Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Chinese Taipei, Thailand, the US and Việt Nam. By the end of November 2016, the APEC member economies accounted for 39 percent of the world’s population and made up 59 percent of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) and 48 percent of the global trade value.
The Ad Hoc Steering Group on the Internet Economy (AHSGIE) and the Economic Committee (EC) convened their second meetings yesterday, while the Committee on Trade and Investment (CTI) held its third meeting. — VNS