Sunday, May 23, 2010

Business in the APEC region concerned by emerging European crisis, seeks new vision for economic integration

Issued by the APEC Secretariat

Chinese Taipei, 21 May 2010 - Business leaders from the APEC region have expressed concern over the crisis currently emerging in Europe.

At a meeting in Chinese Taipei this week, the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) called on member economies to be prepared to take quick and coordinated action, should the crisis in Europe persist and spread toward the APEC region.

Progress toward free trade goals, future vision for APEC

Reviewing APEC’s own progress toward its guiding principle of free trade throughout the region, the group noted that both developed and developing member economies have become considerably more open since the adoption of the Bogor Goals* by APEC Leaders in 1994.

However, says ABAC Chair Gempachiro Aihara:

“The world has changed and APEC needs a renewed focus on removing barriers to deeper integration and deliver stronger business growth.”

ABAC called for a new vision for economic integration that takes into account the evolving nature of global business particularly regional supply chains and value chain in the Asia Pacific region. This vision, say members, should not only include liberalising the flow of goods throughout the region, but also the flow of services, investments, ideas and people. It should be underpinned by balanced and inclusive growth and sustainable development and should take into account the needs of small and medium enterprises as well as microenterprises.

ABAC continues its call for the establishment of a Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP) which appears to be the most viable concept for achieving economic and market integration in the Asia Pacific. It called for APEC Ministers to provide greater detail on the modalities and process toward a FTAAP to enable the business community to be more actively involved in its evolution.

ABAC will put forward their recommendations to Leaders on the way forward for APEC during their meeting with Ministers Responsible for Trade which will take place on 5-6 June 2010 in Sapporo, Japan.

 About ABAC

ABAC includes representatives from the business communities in each of the APEC’s 21 member economies.  These representatives are appointed by APEC Leaders as a source of insight to the priorities and concerns of business sector. The second ABAC meeting was held from 17 – 21 May in Chinese Taipei.

For more information, contact:

Mr. Osama Kamikawa, ABAC Executive Director 2010 at (813) 3285 5857 or at:

Mr. Antonio Basilio, ABAC Secretariat at (63 2) 845-4564 or at:

Ms. Tran Bao Ngoc, APEC Secretariat at: (65) 6891 9616 or at:

* In 1994 APEC established the “Bogor Goals” of free and open trade and investment in the region by 2010 for industrialised economies, and by 2020 for developing economies. 


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