APEC’s mission in the post-COVID-19 era

Monday, 2021-11-08 09:56:31
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New Zealand, the revolving Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation host. (Photo: Reuters)
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NDO – Promoting economic recovery and restructuring towards green, sustainable, inclusive and digital-based development will be the “mission” of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in the “post-COVID-2019” period.

The above-mentioned key tasks will be discussed at the 28th APEC Summit Week, taking place from November 8-12 in online format. This year's event takes place in the context of intensely complicated developments in the world and region, as the COVID-19 pandemic has posed great challenges and cast a dark shadow on regional and global economic prospects.

In that context, New Zealand, the host of APEC 2021, has identified the theme “Join, Work, Grow Together”, focusing on three priorities including economic and trade policies, promotion economic recovery, inclusive and sustainable recovery, and innovation and digitisation. In particular, a key issue is promoting cooperation in post-pandemic recovery and implementing the APEC Vision towards 2040.

Promoting cooperation in post-pandemic recovery was identified as the focus of discussion of the 28th APEC Summit Week as it is the top concern of all APEC members as well as the whole world.. Over the past two years, the “COVID-19 storm” has swept through all regions and pushed most of APEC and global economies deep into crisis.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently lowered its forecast for global economic growth in 2021 to 5.9%, lower than the forecast in July. This institution warned of two major problems with the global economy. First, supply chain disruptions and price pressures are holding back the recovery of the world economy. Second, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to hinder economic recovery and inequality in the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, especially in developing countries.

Countries cannot solve those regional and global challenges alone and APEC’s mission is to lead member economies towards overcoming these challenges. The determination to act to promote economic recovery after the pandemic was demonstrated at the technical discussion sessions of APEC senior officials on November 5.

APEC member economies currently account for about 60% of the world’s total GDP, more than 48% of the global trade and nearly 40% of the world’s population. They participate in a total of 170 regional free trade and trade agreements.

Therefore, APEC’s determination to promote a post-COVID-19 economic recovery, restructuring towards green, sustainable and inclusive development is of great significance in promoting economic recovery and development on a global scale.

Translated by NDO