|Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh (second from left in the first row) at the opening ceremony of the 26th APEC Foreign and Economic Ministerial Meeting, which commenced in Beijing yesterday.— VNA/VNS Photo
BEIJING (VNS)— Viet Nam will continue working with APEC member economies to step up regional co-operation and consolidate the position of the APEC forum.
At the 26th APEC Foreign and Economic Ministerial Meeting, which commenced in Beijing yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh spoke of the forum's development process as a driver of global economic growth that would boost the position of the Asian-Pacific region.
He called on member economies to strengthen co-operation on narrowing development gaps, ensuring social welfare, poverty eradication and gender equality and responding to global challenges. It was necessary to take into consideration the development level of member economies during such co-operation, he added, urging members to concentrate on enhancing the capacity of developing economy members and building economic and technological links.
The Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister suggested member economies continue to actively support sub-regional and regional collaboration programmes, including the establishment of the ASEAN Community in 2015, implementing the master plan on ASEAN connectivity and narrowing development gaps within the bloc and the Greater Mekong Sub-Region.
Addressing the opening ceremony, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi highlighted the special meaning of this year's conference, which marks the 25th founding anniversary of APEC and the 20th anniversary of the Bogor goals of liberalising and facilitating trade and investment.
Ministers agreed on the importance of enhancing multilateral co-operation to maintain peace and stability in the region, based on the spirit of mutual trust and shared benefits. They also proposed a number of measures to increase comprehensive links, develop infrastructure and respond to global challenges such as natural disasters and corruption.
Founded in 1989, APEC has 21 members: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, mainland China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, the US and Viet Nam. Representing approximately 40 percent of the world's population, 55 percent of global economic output and 44 percent of total trade, APEC aims to boost sustainable economic growth built on the three pillars of trade and investment liberalisation, business facilitation and economic-technological co-operation.
Since joining APEC in 1998, Viet Nam has played an active role in a number of initiatives. Last September, the sixth APEC Ministerial Meeting on Human Resources Development was successfully held in Ha Noi. Viet Nam is actively preparing for the APEC Year, which the country will host in 2017. — VNS