The 26th APEC Ministerial Meeting

Beijing, China
8 November 2014

Table of Contents

Joint Ministerial Statement

Foreword

  1. We, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministers, met on 7-8 November 2014, in Beijing, China. The meeting was co-chaired by H.E. Wang Yi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China, and H.E. Gao Hucheng, Minister of Commerce of the People's Republic of China.
  2. We assembled under the theme of “Shaping the Future through Asia-Pacific Partnership”, and focused on three priority areas, Advancing Regional Economic Integration, Promoting Innovative Development, Economic Reform and Growth, and Strengthening Comprehensive Connectivity and Infrastructure Development. We held substantial discussions on the economic situation in the region, the changing global and regional landscape, the challenges and opportunities for APEC member economies, and the vision for APEC cooperation.
  3. We are committed to taking concrete steps and joint actions to foster Asia-Pacific partnership, strengthen the role of APEC, and contribute to the long-term development and common prosperity of the Asia-Pacific region, with the goal of ensuring the role of the Asia-Pacific region as the engine for global economic growth.
  4. We welcome the participation in the meeting of the Director General of the WTO, the Chair of the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), the Deputy Secretary General of ASEAN, the co-chairs of the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC), and the representative of the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF).
  5. We pledge to take the following actions:

Advancing Regional Economic Integration

  1. We endorse the 2014 APEC Committee on Trade and Investment (CTI) Annual Report to Ministers.

Supporting the Multilateral Trading System

  1. We reaffirm our confidence in the value of the multilateral trading system and stand firmly to strengthen the rules-based, transparent, non-discriminatory, open and inclusive multilateral trading system as embodied in the WTO.
  2. We highly commend the Bali Package achieved at the 9th Ministerial Conference (MC9) in Bali, Indonesia. We express our grave concern regarding the impasse in the implementation of the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) which has resulted in stalemate and uncertainties over other Bali decisions. These developments have affected the credibility of the WTO negotiating function. In finding solutions to the implementation of the Bali decisions, APEC will exert creative leadership and energy together with all WTO members in unlocking this impasse, putting all Bali decisions back on track, and proceeding with the formulation of Post-Bali Work Program, as a key stepping stone to concluding the Doha Round.
  3. Bearing in mind that open markets are vital for economic growth, job creation and sustainable development, we reaffirm our commitment and recommend that our Leaders extend a standstill until the end of 2018, and roll back protectionist and trade-distorting measures. We remain committed to exercising maximum restraint in implementing measures that may be consistent with WTO provisions but have a significant protectionist effect,and to promptly rectifying such measures, where implemented. In this context, we support the work of the WTO and other international organizations in monitoring protectionism.
  4. We recognize that bilateral, regional and plurilateral trade agreements can play an important role in complementing global liberalization initiatives. We will continue to work together to ensure that they contribute to strengthening the multilateral trading system. We underscore the importance of the negotiations to expand the product coverage of the Information Technology Agreement (ITA). A final ITA expansion outcome should be commercially significant, credible, pragmatic, balanced, and reflective of the dynamic technological developments in the information technology sector over the last 17 years, and contribute to the multilateral trading system. We welcome APEC’s leadership in advancing the negotiations.  We welcome the launch of negotiations on Environmental Goods Agreement (EGA) in July 2014 in Geneva. We encourage participants of the above initiatives to seek expanded memberships.

Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP)

  1. In order to translate the FTAAP from a vision to reality, we agree to kick off and advance the process in a comprehensive and systematic manner towards the eventual realization of the FTAAP. We adopt the Beijing Roadmap for APEC’s Contribution to the Realization of the FTAAP which demonstrates APEC’s leadership and commitment to regional economic integration and provides a pragmatic guide to advance work towards the FTAAP in a step-by-step approach, with the goal of establishing the FTAAP as early as possible by building on ongoing regional undertakings. We instruct officials to undertake the actions identified in the roadmap while pursuing the conclusion of initiatives considered as potential building blocks of the FTAAP.
  2. We agree to launch a collective strategic study on issues related to the realization of the FTAAP and adopt the Outline of this Study. This study will be built on previous analytical work in APEC, and aim to analyze a wide range of options for expanding Asia-Pacific trade and investment with contributions and support from ABAC, PECC and APEC Study Centers. We instruct the CTI Friends of the Chair Group on Strengthening REI and Advancing FTAAP to organize and lead a task force to undertake the study and report the result to us by the end of 2016.
  3. We welcome the establishment of an APEC Information Sharing Mechanism on RTAs/FTAs, and encourage officials to advance work under this mechanism and to report back to us in 2015. We welcome the progress achieved under the Action Plan Framework on Capacity Building Needs Initiatives (CBNI) and endorse the Action Plan Framework of the 2nd CBNI. We instruct Senior Officials to take steps to ensure the effective implementation of the 2nd CBNI.

Bogor Goals

  1. In 1994, APEC Leaders announced the commitment to achieve the goal of free and open trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific, with APEC's industrialized economies to achieve the goal by 2010 and developing economies by 2020. Today, as we gather in Beijing, we remain committed to this core mission. We commit to upholding APEC’s role towards achieving the Bogor Goals by 2020. We urge all economies, particularly developed economies, to deeply consider the outcomes of the Report on APEC's 2010 Economies' Progress towards the Bogor Goals and the 2012 and 2014 Bogor Goals Progress Reports, and to take more concrete actions towards attaining the Bogor Goals.
  2. We take note on the progress of the study on promoting trade in products which contribute to sustainable and inclusive growth through rural development and poverty alleviation. We look forward to the final report by early 2015.

Global Value Chain (GVC)

  1. Recognizing that Global Value Chains (GVCs) have become a dominant feature of the global economy involving economies at varying levels of development, we agree to take concrete actions to create an enabling environment for GVC development and cooperation while taking into account the different economic circumstances of APEC economies. In this regard, we endorse the APEC Strategic Blueprint for Promoting Global Value Chain Development and Cooperation as a mechanism to strengthen mutual economic cooperation within the global value chain network, and shape a resilient and inclusive future for economic growth through a stronger and closer Asia-Pacific partnership. We welcome the progress made so far, and instruct officials to advance the work through the CTI Friends of the Chair Group on GVCs to put forward new initiatives under this Strategic Blueprint for 2015 and beyond by working closely with related international organizations.
  2. We note a proposal to study localization policies in the context of GVCs, and discuss possible ways through which economies can promote job creation and competitiveness.
  3. We endorse the Strategic Framework on Measurement of APEC Trade in Value Added (TiVA) under GVCs and the Action Plan on this Strategic Framework. We instruct the newly-established technical group to work closely with related international organizations, with an aim to complete the construction of the APEC TiVA Database by 2018.
  4. We endorse the initiative on Promoting SME’s Integration into Global Value Chains in Major Industries. We welcome the voluntary participation of leading economies in the key industrial sectors. We encourage APEC economies to make concerted efforts to bring concrete policy recommendations that can facilitate SME’s integration into GVCs.
  5. We welcome the completion of the APEC Policy Support Unit (PSU) study on Comprehensive Analysis on Enhanced Resiliency of Cross-Border Value Chains, and instruct officials to make a collaborative effort to enhance cross-border value chain resilience, including business continuity, in the region, building on the PSU study.

Supply Chain Connectivity

  1. We welcome the comprehensive Capacity Building Plan to improve supply chain performance, and encourage economies to include new projects in 2015. This living document will guide our work to i) reach our Leaders’ goal of achieving a ten percent improvement in supply chain performance by 2015; ii) deploy the resources in the Supply Chain Connectivity Sub-Fund; and iii) help developing economies overcome supply-chain obstacles and implement the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement. We welcome the diagnostic reports on eight chokepoints of the Supply Chain Framework Action Plan (SCFAP), which will guide our current and future targeted capacity building and technical assistance projects. We also welcome the establishment of the APEC Alliance for Supply Chain Connectivity (A2C2) and look forward to its contributions to our capacity building work next year.
  2. Recognizing the importance of promoting supply chain connectivity through E-port development and collaboration efforts, we endorse the APEC Initiative on Asia-Pacific Model E-port Network and the Terms of Reference of the Asia-Pacific Model E-port Network (APMEN), serving as a brain trust to promote E-port development and cooperation under the principles of mutual benefits and respect. We applaud the nominations from Australia; Canada; China; Hong Kong, China; Mexico; Peru; Chinese Taipei; and Viet Nam of the first batch of APEC Model E-ports to join the APMEN. We agree to set up the APMEN operational center in Shanghai Model E-port, and instruct officials to advance the APMEN cooperation.
  3. We positively value the APEC High-Level Roundtable on Green Development held in Tianjin, China in May 2014 and its output, the Declaration of APEC High-Level Roundtable on Green Development. We agree to establish the APEC Cooperation Network on Green Supply Chain to strengthen the capacity building and information sharing on green supply chain and to promote green supply chain cooperation among APEC economies and stakeholders, and to contribute to the green development of the region. We endorse the establishment of the first pilot center of the APEC Cooperation Network on Green Development held in Tianjin, China.
  4. Recognising that the wider use of interoperable Global Data Standards (GDS) can bring about broader benefits of efficiency, integrity, visibility and innovation, we encourage officials to further advance their work on GDS, including developing pilot projects, conducting a study and establishing a set of policy-based principles or recommendations for future GDS initiatives. We endorse the APEC Statement on Promoting The Use Of Interoperable Global Data Standards (Annex A ).
  5. We endorse the project proposals on Capacity Building and Technical Assistance to Implement Programs on Pre-Arrival Processing, Expedited Shipments, Release of Goods, Advance Rulings, and Electronic Payments, the implementation of which will substantially help us achieve our objective of a 10% improvement in supply chain performance by 2015, help us implement the future WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement commitments and to further our trade facilitation objectives.

Next Generation Trade and Investment Issues

  1. We welcome the case studies to identify manufacturing related services in supply chains/value chains as a next generation trade and investment issue, and instruct officials to develop a plan of action in 2015, with the contribution by the PSU and possible input from ABAC and PECC.

Environmental Goods and Services

  1. Implementation of our groundbreaking commitment to reduce tariffs on environmental goods by the end of 2015 is critical to achieve both economic and environmental benefits. We call on officials to submit implementation plans by the 2015 Ministers Responsible for Trade Meeting, in line with the Leaders’ commitment in 2012. We welcome the work this year on capacity building on implementation of Environmental Goods commitment and the first meeting of the APEC Public Private Partnership on Environmental Goods and Services (PPEGS) on renewable and clean energy trade and investment. We endorse the APEC Statement on Promoting Renewable and Clean Energy (RCE) Trade and Investment (Annex B), and commit to create an enabling environment for RCE trade and investment.  We also welcome the endorsement of the initiative on liberalization, facilitation and cooperation of environmental services, and instruct officials to develop a plan of action by the next AMM in 2015.

Customs

  1. We note the unique role of Customs in facilitating trade and endorse the APEC Customs 3M Strategic Framework (Annex C). We also reaffirm our commitment to further simplify and harmonize customs procedures in line with relevant international standards, including those developed by the World Customs Organization (WCO). We encourage full implementation of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement by customs administrations in APEC economies.
  2. We welcome the progress in formulating the Guidelines for APEC Customs Transit to enhance harmonization among APEC Customs administrations and expect effective implementation and evaluation in the following stages. We recognize the continued efforts in promoting interoperability of various Single Window systems and in researching on the benefits of the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) system throughout the APEC region for the further improvement of supply chain performance. We welcome the customs initiative to suppress illegal transactions through cross-border e-commerce and support the collaboration with the business to better manage the potential risk at border and facilitate legitimate trade. We welcome the continued voluntary Customs enforcement operation of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) protection to combat infringements and relevant capacity building programs that can enhance trade order.

Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs)

  1. We reaffirm that IPR provide incentives that encourage creativity and innovation and renew our commitment to enhance the protection and enforcement of IPR, including trade secrets.

Services

  1. We welcome continued work to increase transparency of services trade-related regulations as well as the efforts to facilitate services trade and investment, and foster the development of open services markets. We take note of the proposal to update information in the Services Trade Access Requirements (STAR) database and expand it to cover all 21 economies in each of the eight services sectors. We encourage further engagement between the public and private sectors to address impediments to and facilitate services trade growth, including through conducting public-private dialogues in the future.

Investment

  1. We endorse the Action Agenda on Promoting Infrastructure Investment through Public-Private Partnership (Annex D). We instruct officials to strengthen cooperation on PPP to promote more robust infrastructure investment and development in the APEC region.
  2. We welcome the work on Case Studies on Sustainable Investment in the APEC Region, and welcome the cases nominated by APEC economies and encourage APEC economies to consider experience from the good cases to promote sustainable investment and inclusive growth in the APEC region.
  3. We welcome the initiative to develop the Guidebook on PPP Framework in APEC Region as an implementation of Multi-Year Plan on Infrastructure Development and Investment (MYPIDI). We encourage APEC economies to continue working on the guidebook in 2015.

Industry Dialogues

  1. We endorse the Asia-Pacific Region Automotive Industry Sustainable Development Declaration submitted by the Automotive Dialogue (AD), and welcome the outcomes of the 2014 APEC Regulatory Cooperation Advancement Mechanism (ARCAM) Dialogue on Electric Vehicle Standards. We endorse the new APEC Actions to Promote Widespread Usage of Electric Vehicles, and we instruct officials to draft a roadmap for Electric Vehicles in 2015.
  2. We welcome the expansion of the APEC Cross Border Privacy Rules (CBPR) System to include additional participating member economies and numerous certified companies. We commend the endorsement of a common referential to enhance interoperability between the European Union (EU) Binding Corporate Rules and APEC CBPR System. We welcome additional member economies’ participation in the system and look forward to enhancing privacy collaboration in the context of cross border data flows between the EU and APEC based on the referential.
  3. We endorse the APEC Cross Border E-Commerce Innovation and Development Initiative to promote the application and development of cross-border e-commerce in the APEC region and facilitate SMEs’ participation in global trade. We encourage economies to designate or establish Research Centers of Cross-border E-commerce Innovation and Development on a voluntary basis. We welcome the initiatives to foster an enabling environment for E-Commerce development.
  4. We support efforts to foster more effective advertising regulation and standards to promote advertising, and endorse the APEC Action Agenda on Advertising Standards and encourage economies to undertake efforts to implement its recommendations in 2015.
  5. We welcome the initiative of the Life Sciences Innovation Forum (LSIF) to build awareness of and capacity for implementation of common product data standards along the supply chain and to promote efficient GVCs in the health and life sciences sectors. We also note the progress made on establishing a center of excellence for regulatory sciences focusing on Multi-Regional Clinical Trials (MRCT) and on establishing a training center. We encourage research and development on effective and safe use of Traditional and Complimentary Alternative Medicines (TCAM). 
  6. We welcome the work being undertaken by the Chemical Dialogue to reduce barriers to trade in the chemical sector. We instruct officials to identify tangible means to advance these efforts, to address barriers to trade and encourage good regulatory practices, including through a renewed focus on implementation of the Best Practice Principles for Chemicals Regulation. We look forward to report outcomes and next steps in 2015 on innovative solutions on marine debris. We welcome the annual Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) implementation report.
  7. To increase wine production, to expand trade, and to create jobs in the region, we commit to eliminating unnecessary export certification for wine by 2018 and instruct officials to advance this work.
  8. We reaffirm our commitment to the Manila Framework which serves as the basis for the implementation of economic and technical cooperation activities outlined in the Osaka Action Agenda, and recognize the vital role of effective and targeted capacity building programs in supporting trade and investment liberalization and facilitation.
  9. We endorse the APEC Strategic Plan on Capacity Building to Promote Trade and Investment Agenda (Annex E) which adopts a strategic, goal-oriented, multi-year approach to capacity building. We encourage officials to develop more tailor-made capacity building programs to contribute to the core trade and investment agenda of APEC.

Promoting Innovative Development, Economic Reform and Growth

  1. We recognize it is imperative to garner benefit from the complementary and mutually reinforcing relationship between innovation, reform and growth. We are therefore determined to seize the opportunities, overcome the challenges and pursue new drivers for development and new growth areas. We endorse the APEC Accord on Promoting Innovative Development, Economic Reform and Growth, and submit it to the Leaders for adoption.

Economic Reform

  1. We welcome the continued progress of APEC economies in implementing the APEC New Strategy on Structural Reform (ANSSR). We agree to take more effective steps to advance the APEC Structural Reform agenda in 2015 and beyond, including convening the 2nd APEC Ministerial Meeting on Structural Reform in 2015, with a view to giving strategic direction to a post-ANSSR structural reform framework for APEC.
  2. We recognize that many APEC member economies are facing the challenge of the Middle-Income Trap (MIT). We agree that APEC should make contribution to help overcome the MIT. We instruct the Economic Committee (EC) to continue its work on the MIT, especially, in the context of the 2nd APEC Ministerial Meeting on Structural Reform. We encourage APEC members to share experiences and provide capacity building in order to assist economies overcome the MIT through structural reform.
  3. We note the stocktaking program on Ease of Doing Business (EODB), and encourage further work by economies on the future directions of EODB work after 2015.
  4. We welcome the joint efforts of the EC and the Asia Pacific Regional Office of the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH), as well as other private international law organizations such as the UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) to build awareness of private international law instruments to facilitate cross-border trade and investment, enhance ease of doing business, and foster effective enforcement of contracts and efficient settlement of business disputes.
  5. We endorse the 2014 APEC Economic Policy Report (AEPR) on Good Regulatory Practice, and agree on the selection of Structural Reform and Innovation as the topic for the 2015 AEPR. We instruct officials starting in 2014 to host the APEC Conference on Good Regulatory Practices once a year, rather than biennially, with the Sub-Committee on Standards and Conformance and the Economic Committee alternating hosting duties.  We instruct officials to study economies’ implementation of the new APEC Actions on Public Consultations on Proposed Regulations in the Internet Era in the 2015 update to the Baseline Study on Good Regulatory Practices in APEC Economies. We encourage economies to provide innovative capacity building approaches to the implementation of good regulatory practices and the use of regulatory tools.

Internet Economy

  1. We recognize that the Internet Economy is an effective driver of economic reform, innovation and sustainable growth. We commit to make APEC play a constructive role in promoting the Internet Economy. We welcome the outcomes of the Multi-Stakeholder Dialogue on APEC Cooperation on the Internet Economy. We welcome the establishment of an Ad Hoc Steering Group to guide the discussion on issues arising from the Internet Economy. In this regard, we endorse the APEC Initiative of Cooperation to Promote Internet Economy (Annex F). We welcome work to identify indicators for APEC’s information society, to improve understanding among economies of policies that promote economic benefits from the information economy.
  2. We agree to leverage the Internet Economy to foster an enabling environment that empowers Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) as well as the vulnerable and disadvantaged groups. We agree to promote safe, efficient, low-cost and inclusive internet financial services to enable SMEs and individuals to share the benefits of economic development, in accordance with the development level and capacity of each member economy.

Ocean Cooperation

  1. We welcome the Xiamen Declaration endorsed at the 4th APEC Ocean-related Ministerial Meeting. We acknowledge the APEC Ocean and Fisheries Working Group (OFWG) views on Blue Economy and the outcomes of the APEC Blue Economy Forums hosted by China. We encourage APEC economies to develop environmentally-friendly ocean-related economic activity as an approach to the sustainable management of marine resources, such as marine renewable energy, and sustainable fisheries and aquaculture through innovation. We endorse the APEC Ocean Cooperation in the Asia Pacific Region (Annex G). We support the establishment of the Steering Council of Mainstreaming Ocean-Related issues in APEC. We also welcome the APEC project “Workshop on the Climate Change Impact on Oceans and Fisheries Resources”.

Energy

  1. We commend the implementation of the APEC Low-Carbon Model Town Project and the related promotion activities and the strengthening of the Energy Smart Communities Initiative under the Energy Working Group (EWG). We welcome the outcomes of the 11th APEC Energy Ministerial Meeting (EMM), including the establishment of the APEC Sustainable Energy Center in China, the promotion of the APEC LNG Trade Facilitation Initiative and the aspirational goal of doubling the share of renewables in the APEC energy mix, including in power generation by 2030. We reiterate our aspirational goal of reducing APEC’s aggregate energy intensity by 45 percent from 2005 levels by 2035 and to rationalize and phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption while still providing essential energy services. We acknowledge Peru and New Zealand for initiating voluntary peer reviews of inefficient fossil fuel subsidies that cause wasteful consumption and sharing their best practices, and welcome the commitment from the Philippines to undergo the review in 2015.
  2. Recognizing that fossil fuel will continue to play a significant role in the energy mix of this region, in the medium to long term, we therefore reaffirm the importance of the clean and efficient use of fossil fuel. We encourage member economies, where there are difficulties in quickly deploying alternatives to coal, to enhance cooperation in developing and applying clean coal technologies such as highly efficient coal-fired power plants and Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage. We support the safe and efficient development of nuclear power, which functions as a base load power source, in interested economies. We encourage member economies to create favorable conditions for trade and investment to support the LNG market in the APEC region, including by relaxing destination clauses.
  3. We agree to facilitate trade in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) products by converging energy efficiency regulations and enhance public-private dialogue through the ICT product Energy Efficiency Convergence Forum, to avoid possible technical barriers to trade of energy efficient ICT products.

Forestry and Wildlife

  1. We reaffirm our commitment to promote trade in legal timber, legally harvested wood and wood products and combat illegal logging and associated trade. We instruct officials to consider proposals related to information sharing and transparency, and to take concrete actions to combat illegal logging and promote trade in legal wood products. We welcome member economies' endeavors through the Expert Group on Illegal Logging and Associated Trade (EGILAT) to promote and facilitate greater transparency and information sharing.  
  2. We are committed to conserving wildlife resources by strengthening our efforts to improve the livelihood of rural community, protect forest, grassland, wetland, desert and marine ecosystems, enhance environmental protection, and facilitate trade in legally harvested wildlife. We remain committed to strengthening our efforts to combat wildlife trafficking in the APEC region and reduce the supply of and demand for illegally traded wildlife. We will join hands to combat illicit transnational trade in protected wildlife by sharing information, intelligence, experiences and best practices, and strengthening international cooperation. We welcome actions being taken to build capacity to stop this illicit trade, including through cooperative activities such as the APEC Capacity Building Workshop on Reduction of Demand for Illegally Traded Wildlife held in Hanoi in October 2014.

Mining

  1. We welcome the outcome of the 5th Meeting of APEC Ministers Responsible for Mining and underscore the important role of sustainable development in mining in the Asia-Pacific region in promoting economic and social development, creating quality jobs, reducing poverty, improving infrastructure, and bridging regional development gaps. We support initiatives to promote the transformation and growth of mining and encourage the APEC Mining Task Force to continue to advance mining cooperation in the region.

Science and Technology

  1. We endorse the initiative on Toward Innovation-Driven Development to build a vigorous partnership on science, technology and innovation. We encourage members to promote regional science and technology collaboration through the Policy Partnership on Science Technology and Innovation (PPSTI) and cross-fora cooperation and coordination among APEC mechanisms, such as the APEC Chief Science Advisors and Equivalents’ Meeting and the APEC Science Prize for Innovation, Research, and Education (ASPIRE).
  2. We encourage members, on a voluntary basis, to raise the proportion of public finance for innovation in science, technology, and related fields. We support members’ efforts to promote entrepreneurial innovation through fiscal and financial policy measures and other means; to strengthen support for innovative activities by SMEs; to shorten the length of translation and commercialization periods of patent and technologies, and to enhance the economic contributions of science and technology. We welcome the establishment of APEC Biomedical Technology Commercialization Training Centers in the Republic of Korea and Thailand. We welcome the outcomes of the APEC Conference on Appropriate Technology (AT).

Small and Medium Enterprises

  1. We welcome the outcomes of the 21st SME Ministerial Meeting and the Nanjing Declaration on Promoting SME Innovative Development. We endorse the outcomes of the first APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Forum in the Nanjing Declaration to Promote Ethical Business Environments in the Medical Device and Biopharmaceutical Sectors (2014-2020),and support the Manila Declaration for the Construction and Engineering Sector. We commit to improve innovation and sustainable development of SMEs, and to further strengthen the innovation capacity of SMEs. We encourage SME R&D through various means such as financial inclusion of innovative start-ups and high-growth SMEs, and actively explore feasible ways to drive the SMEs innovation based on information technology and e-commerce. We encourage the supportive role of APEC service platforms. We welcome the progress in developing and implementing code of ethics in member economies to create ethical business environments that support innovation and the sustainable growth, especially for SMEs.

Human Resource Development and Skills Training

  1. We welcome the outcome of the 6th APEC Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministerial Meeting and the HRD Action Plan (2015-2018) on Promoting Quality Employment and Strengthening People-to-People Connectivity through HRD. We acknowledge the initiative of APEC economies to establish APEC Human Resources Development Centers, including the proposal for establishing such a center in Viet Nam.
  2. We support training programs for skills development and endorse the establishment of capacity building centers to help workers achieve competencies required to meet industry demand. We agree to improve skills for women and young people and foster an enabling environment to create better quality jobs, and welcome the progress made under the APEC Skills Development Promotion Project (2010-2014).

Women

  1. We welcome the outcomes of the APEC 2014 Women and the Economy Forum, and encourage sustained momentum from economies to provide policy support for women’s economic empowerment and establish a gender-responsive enabling environment to advance women's full and equal economic participation, including in women’s access to jobs, capital, markets, business networks, skills and capacity building, and innovation and technology. We support launching a Women’s Entrepreneurship in APEC (WE-APEC) network of networks in the Asia-Pacific region. We recognize the importance of data to be measured and tracked to show progress over time for advancing women’s economic empowerment, and we welcome the establishment of the APEC Women and the Economy Dashboard as an important step in tracking women’s ability to participate in the economy in the APEC region. We recognize the role of public-private collaboration in promoting women’s leadership, and we welcome the 50 Leading Companies for Women in APEC report and encourage economies to share and disseminate best practices of those companies domestically. We instruct the APEC Policy Partnership on Women and Economy (PPWE) to collaborate with other APEC fora to incorporate a gender perspective into APEC’s work. We encourage cross-fora synergies wherever possible, and welcome the Healthy Women, Healthy Economies joint initiative to enhance women’s labor force participation, and efforts to enhance export programs in member economies to Assist Women-owned SMEs Access to the Global Market.

Food Safety and Security

  1. We welcome the outcomes of the 3rd APEC Food Security Ministerial Meeting. We support the APEC Action Plan for Reducing Food Loss and Waste, the APEC Food Security Business Plan (2014-2020), and the APEC Food Security Roadmap toward 2020 (2014 version) and the Action Plan to Enhance Connectivity of APEC Food Standards and Safety Assurance. We recognize the important role of the Policy Partnership on Food Security as a platform to convene governments and private enterprises to share expertise, knowledge, and jointly address food security. We reaffirm the importance of enhancing food security through the development of food value chains, and acknowledge the efforts made jointly by member economies in reducing food loss.
  2. We welcome the outcomes of the Food Safety Cooperation Forum Special Session in Beijing and its Partnership Training Institute Network in developing robust food safety systems in APEC member economies, especially those reflected in the APEC Food Safety Beijing Statement 2014 of the APEC High-Level Regulator Industry Dialogue.
  3. We are committed to strengthening APEC agricultural science and technology innovation and cooperation with a view to facilitating trade related agricultural products and promoting sustainable agricultural development. We will encourage the use of agricultural science and technology research in a market-oriented manner to improve food safety and security in the region.

Disaster Management

  1. We welcome the recommendations from the 8th Disaster Management Senior Officials Forum. We encourage APEC member economies to place more emphasis on the application of science and technology in disaster preparedness, risk reduction, response and post-disaster recovery and cooperation in search and rescue, and recognize them as effective approaches to responding to global climate change and promoting a balance between economic growth, inclusive social development, and sustainable use of the environment and resources.
  2. We welcome the Work Plan on Emergency Response Travel Facilitation (ERTF) that will continue APEC’s work in easing the mobility of emergency responders and business community to take part in the post-disaster recovery. We commend the ongoing work to promote the use of business continuity plans to mitigate the impact of disasters on communities and economies.
  3. We welcome the APEC Guidelines for Appropriate Donations in Times of Disaster to support effective public donations practices, efficient supply chain and relief operations, and speedier economic recovery in disaster-affected areas. We commit to improving the resilience of supply chains in APEC economies. We support and recognize the importance of assessing the economic value of coastal ecosystems for disaster risk reduction and response and coastal resilience. We encourage additional emergency response mechanisms to increase resiliency of our energy infrastructure to natural disasters and climate change. We welcome work that might better utilize new technologies to improve how we work collectively across APEC in response to disasters and emergencies, such as the initial steps taken for people rescue by the APEC Telecommunications and Information Working Group. We support the goal of increasing human safety by using ICT. We encourage the application of innovative science and technology to better utilize big data and share value-added information that will enhance capacity building on disaster resilience for SMEs and Global Value Chains. We acknowledge the progress being made by APEC toward establishing the Trade Recovery Programme, a trade recovery communications mechanism. 

Anti-Corruption

  1. We resolve to strengthen pragmatic anti-corruption cooperation, especially in key areas such as denying safe haven, extraditing or repatriating corrupt officials, enhancing asset recovery efforts, and protecting market order and integrity.
  2. We endorse the Beijing Declaration on Fighting Corruption (Annex H), the APEC Principles on the Prevention of Bribery and Enforcement of Anti-bribery Laws, and the APEC General Elements of Effective Corporate Compliance Programs.
  3. We welcome the establishment of the APEC Network of Anti-Corruption and Law Enforcement Agencies (ACT-NET) with the finalization of its Terms of Reference. We expect to deepen international cooperation, information and intelligence exchange and experience sharing among anti-corruption and law enforcement practitioners from APEC member economies through the ACT-NET and other platforms.
  4. We appreciate the efforts of the Anti-Corruption and Transparency Working Group in collaborating with other APEC fora to improve transparency in this region.

Counter-Terrorism

  1. We welcome the upgrade of Counter Terrorism Task Force (CTTF) and commend the achievements of the Counter Terrorism Working Group (CTWG) during this year, including identification of its priorities and implementation of the CTWG Strategic Plan 2013-2017. We commend the outcomes of the Secure Trade in APEC Region (STAR) IX Conference. We encourage economies to continue to cooperate and communicate in areas such as secure supply chain, secure travel, secure finance and secure infrastructure, to improve and maintain trade security and economic stability in the region.

Health

  1. Recognizing health is a critical component of economic and trade development as well as a driver of regional economic growth, we endorse the Healthy Asia Pacific 2020 initiativeand the Statement by the 4th APEC High Level Meeting on Health and the Economy. We reaffirm our commitment to strengthen health systems with a focus on the areas of:  Universal Health Coverage; health financing; the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases and preparedness for effective management of infectious diseases; strengthening mental health through implementation of the 2015-2020 roadmap; and promoting understanding of the safe and effective use of traditional medicine and similar products.

Urbanization

  1. We note the outcomes of the APEC High Level Dialogue on Urbanization in August 2014. We endorse the APEC Cooperation Initiative for Jointly Establishing an Asia-Pacific Urbanization Partnership. We encourage more support for urbanization cooperation activities.
  2. We welcome the APEC Policy Support Unit (PSU) study on Urbanization and Sustainable City Development, and task it to continue its study on regional urbanization. We encourage relevant APEC fora to incorporate urbanization-related topics into their work programs. We agree to set up a Senior Officials' Meeting (SOM) Friends of the Chair on Urbanization to guide future work in this field.
  3.  We commend efforts made in the implementation of the APEC Low-Carbon Model Town Project and the Energy Smart Communities Initiative under the APEC Energy Working Group, and instruct officials to explore pathways to sustainable city development and to a new type of urbanization that is green, circular, low-carbon and people-oriented, thus striking a balance between economic growth, inclusive social development and sustainable use of the environment and resources. We agree to establish a cooperative network of sustainable cities in APEC economies.

Strengthening Comprehensive Connectivity and Infrastructure Development

  1. We recognize that strengthening comprehensive connectivity and infrastructure development plays a vital role in fostering trade facilitation in the region, realizing a more interconnected regional economy, and improving the competitiveness. We are convinced that it will contribute substantially to the realization of the Bogor Goals and regional economic integration.
  2. We endorse the APEC Connectivity Blueprint, and submit it to the APEC Leaders for their endorsement. We commit to implement the APEC Connectivity Blueprint and achieve the overarching goal of strengthening physical, institutional and people-to-people connectivity by taking agreed actions and meeting agreed targets by 2025, with the objective of achieving a seamless and comprehensively connected and integrated Asia Pacific.
  3. We welcome the undertaking of the Report to Implement the APEC Connectivity Blueprint, and encourage economies and APEC fora to draw on the report when implementing the Blueprint.
  4. We note the tremendous work accomplished under the APEC Finance Ministers’ Process (FMP), including: compiling demonstrative infrastructure PPP projects for experience sharing; formulating an implementation roadmap to guide APEC’s future work in developing infrastructure PPP projects; strengthening capacity of pilot PPP centers; promoting experience sharing; carrying on capacity building project of PPP pilot demonstration and standard contract making; and, consolidating the role of the PPP Experts Advisory Panel in supporting and guiding APEC’s Public-Private Partnership (PPP) work. We recognize the important role of fiscal and taxation policies, and encourage all economies to promote financial services for regional real economy in order to achieve benefit and economic sustainability.
  5. We acknowledge the progress made by Indonesia throughout 2014 in establishing its PPP Center with the support from the APEC PPP Experts Advisory Panel. We welcome the establishment of the PPP Center in China, as a center of excellence to facilitate development of PPP projects and institutional building at different government levels. We are willing to provide technical assistance to the interested member economies in this endeavor on a voluntary basis.
  6. We note with appreciation the work of the APEC Port Service Network (APSN) to facilitate cooperation and communication among ports and related sectors in the region. We applaud APSN's efforts to promote green growth and strengthen connectivity in the APEC port and related industries.
  7. We recognize that lifecycle cost, environmental impacts, and safety including resilience to natural disasters, constitute key elements of infrastructure quality. We welcome the positive contribution of the APEC Capacity Building Seminar on Quality of Infrastructure Development and Investment, and the APEC Guidebook on Quality of Infrastructure  Development and Investment.
  8. We recognize the importance of people-centered investment as well as good practices and principles should be taken into account in formulating infrastructure development plans.
  9. We reaffirm the importance of improving transportation systems to ease the flow of goods, people, services, and capital through developing a transportation "Connectivity Map" and "Quality Transport" vision, and sharing best practices in enhancing transportation infrastructure investment.
  10. We affirm that transportation infrastructure development, as well as safe, secure, and sustainable transportation, is essential for the promotion of economic growth in the APEC region. We encourage all economies to invest in new, upgraded or replacement infrastructure, in order to meet increased transportation needs.
  11. We recognize that strengthening cross-border education cooperation among APEC economies is a critical form of people-to-people connectivity. We welcome progress on the Work Plan on Promoting Cross-Border Education Cooperation, and encourage new activities that further promote APEC cross-border education cooperation, including by enhancing the mobility of students, researchers and education providers, and the existing network of bilateral agreements. We commend the APEC economies, including their participating schools and companies that have committed to sponsoring APEC scholarships and internships this year to promote cross-border education as well as inclusive growth in and across the region. We urge efforts by APEC economies to contribute to the target of 1 million intra-APEC university-level students per year by 2020.
  12. We encourage officials to elaborate various academic mobility schemes and mechanisms, including voluntary implementation of the ‘Virtual’ Academic Mobility Card, which universities can use on a voluntary basis to facilitate knowledge sharing. We encourage efforts to provide such opportunities to generally under-represented populations,and advocate further research and best regulatory practices on collaboration and exchanges in the field of higher education and vocational education. We encourage economies to use platforms such as the APEC Higher Education Research Center (AHERC)to enhance joint study, information sharing, student and researchers mobility among APEC universities and institutions.
  13. We support the End-to-End Review of the present APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC) Scheme, and remain committed to its further improvement and development with our concerted efforts. We welcome the in-principle agreement to extend the validity of the ABTC to 5 years. We appreciate the endeavors of transitional members of the ABTC Scheme to become full members.
  14. We are pleased to note that the 8th APEC Tourism Ministers’ Meeting has agreed to strive for the target of 800 million international tourists among APEC economies by 2025. We agree with the initiative proposed by the 8th TMM to develop tourism as a pillar industry and give priority to its development by APEC economies. We agree that tourism cooperation is an effective way to boost connectivity in the Asia-Pacific region and share the best examples of tourism boosting connectivity. We agree to promote the integrated development of tourism and other related industries as a driving force of economic growth so as to make active contribution to value chain cooperation in the Asia Pacific region.

Strengthening APEC

  1. We recognize the importance of Economic and Technical Cooperation (ECOTECH) to ensure equitable growth and shared prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region and global competitiveness as a foundation to advance trade and investment liberalization and facilitation. We reiterate our commitments to ECOTECH as APEC’s main pillar in attaining sustainable growth and equitable development in the Asia-Pacific region and in reducing economic disparities among APEC economies. We remain committed to providing demand-driven ECOTECH activities to help APEC economies, in particular the developing economies, to achieve the Bogor Goals.
  2. We agree to strengthen the prioritization and effective implementation of ECOTECH through APEC fora. We encourage economies, particularly developed economies, to provide more capacity building support and contributions including to the existing APEC Funds, so as to achieve our goal of bridging gaps in capacity gaps among economies, and help economies meet their APEC commitments and economic growth objectives.
  3. We welcome efforts to maintain APEC's focus on ECOTECH and instruct officials to improve the effectiveness of the SOM Steering Committee on ECOTECH (SCE)’s work, capacity-building and communication. We commend the progress made this year in advancing the ECOTECH agenda and endorse the 2014 Senior Official’s Report on Economic and Technical Cooperation.
  4. We acknowledge ongoing endeavors to strengthen the coordination between APEC fora and to streamline the operation of the SCE and instruct Senior Officials to continue improving this coordination and urge APEC fora to enhance communication so as to avoid duplication of work and maximize synergy.
  5. We welcome China’s initiative to upgrade the Asia-Pacific Finance and Development Center to the Asia-Pacific Finance and Development Institute (AFDI) and appreciate China's efforts and concrete contribution to support economic and technical cooperation and capacity building in the Asia-Pacific region. We endeavor to strengthen our cooperation with the AFDI through our domestic institutions including our APEC study centers.
  6. We acknowledge the 10-year achievement of the APEC Digital Opportunity Center (ADOC) initiative and appreciate Chinese Taipei’s efforts and contributions as well as the cooperation of the 10 partner member economies (PMEs) in bridging digital divides and creating digital opportunities throughout the APEC region.
  7. We endorse the Ways to Strengthen APEC’s Synergy and Complementarity with Regional and International Cooperation Fora and Processes, to solve complex cross-border challenges, and instruct Officials to implement the recommendations. We welcome the active participation and valuable inputs provided by ABAC this year on various cross-cutting agenda in APEC.
  8. We recognize the importance of budget and management arrangements as a means to ensure APEC's strength as an institution. In this regard, we welcome the work of APEC in financial realignment and institutional management issues. We also welcome the work on project management to improve capacity-building activities in APEC, including the work by the Budget and Management Committee (BMC) to better evaluate the impact of APEC projects.
  9. We appreciate the pivotal role of the PSU in fulfilling APEC 2014 priorities, in particular taking the lead in the development of the APEC Connectivity Blueprint and the report to support its implementation. We are encouraged by the increasing contributions of the PSU to key APEC initiatives. We note that the PSU also has provided useful contributions to the Finance Ministers' Process. We urge the PSU to continue building up a solid body of work, including evaluating the quality of its outputs. We reiterate our commitment to support the PSU.
  10. We endorse the 2014 Senior Officials’ Report on APEC’s work program, including the recommendations contained therein, note the 2014 Annual Report of the APEC Secretariat Executive Director, and approve the 2015 APEC budget and member contributions. We welcome preparations for APEC 2015 in the Philippines.

Annex A: APEC Statement on Promoting the Use of Interoperable Global Data Standards

  1. In our 2013 declaration, we recognised the contribution that global data standards can make to enhancing supply chain efficiency, and encouraged officials to explore what more can be done to facilitate mutual compatibility amongst data standards frameworks, and the compatibility of economies’ frameworks with the use of global data standards.
  2. In any international transaction of goods, a range of information needs to be exchanged between various parties as the goods move along global supply chains.  Global data standards can be used to ensure that relevant information is provided in a common format which is easily understood and can potentially be shared by all parties.  For example, global data standards underpin the common bar code system and the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System used to classify traded products.  We acknowledge the leadership of the private sector in developing global data standards and ABAC’s ongoing support for work within APEC on this subject.
  3. As transactions by governments and the private sector become increasingly electronic, it is becoming more important and useful to ensure that systems of the relevant stakeholders are interoperable.  As such, we welcome the initial work which officials have undertaken to explore this issue including a workshop and a related trade policy dialogue on global data standards.  We note that these activities have established that the wider use of interoperable global data standards can have the following broader benefits: 
    • Efficiency: global data standards can improve the efficiency of supply chains by eliminating unnecessary transactions, and enabling better informed and more accurate risk assessments.
    • Integrity: global data standards can be used to verify the integrity of a product throughout the supply chain.
    • Visibility: global data standards can increase the visibility and transparency of supply chain processes.
    • Innovation: global data standards can provide a platform for innovation by enabling new ways to utilise information through ‘smart’ supply chain processes.
  4. We also acknowledge that our global data standards activities will make a substantial contribution to the core areas of APEC’s work.  This includes our wider objectives on connectivity, global value chains, Bogor Goals andour goalto achieve a 10% improvement in supply chain performance among APEC economies by 2015 including efforts to address key supply chain chokepoints.
  5. In recognition of the benefits that flow from wider use of global data standards and the linkages with existing APEC objectives, we instruct officials to further advance work on global data standards by developing pilot projects with the participation of the private sector.  These pilot projects will be a practical step to further explore the benefits of global data standards and we encourage APEC economies to participate in these projects in accordance with their own domestic circumstances. 
  6. Finally, we encourage officials to conduct a study to assess the overall outcome of these pilot projects, and to establish a set of policy-based principles or recommendations which could provide reference for future initiatives on global data standards in APEC economies.

Annex B: APEC Statement on Promoting RCE Trade and Investment

Promoting Renewable and Clean Energy (RCE) trade and investment is crucial for meeting our current and future energy needs. Greater use of RCE will diversify our energy supply and reduce environmental impact. In recent years, the market for RCE has been consistently growing, but various patterns of barriers in cross border trade and investment remain a persistent challenge. In 2014, a Public Private Dialogue on RCE Trade and Investment was held to launch the APEC Public Private Partnership on Environmental Goods and Services (PPEGS), promote RCE trade and investment and increase the utilization of RCE. Based on previous APEC work on RCE and the recommendations of the 1st PPEGS dialogue, bearing in mind the non-binding and voluntary nature of APEC, we agreed to undertake the following:

  1. Promote market openness by further addressing trade barriers on RCE products among APEC member economies, work together to fight against all forms of trade protectionism in the RCE sector and deepen our cooperation on monitoring and resisting protectionist measures;
  2. Prevent trade frictions in cross border RCE trade and investment by strengthening coordination and cooperation among APEC economies, including by holding public private dialogues regularly and building broader understanding and trust among APEC economies;
  3. Promote regulatory coherence and cooperation in areas affecting RCE trade and investment, including by exploring the alignment of standards and certification systems in the RCE industry, to ensure the supply of high quality RCE products in this region;
  4. Ensure that all government support and incentive programs aimed at promoting environmental goods and services are transparent and consistent with WTO rules;
  5. Strengthen the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights and recognize the importance of comprehensive and balanced intellectual property systems that provide for and protect the incentives that encourage creativity and innovation, and provide substantial support to RCE research and development;
  6. Encourage economies to report progress in realizing the objectives of the 2011 Leaders Declaration on Trade and Investment in Environmental Goods and Services on voluntary basis;
  7. Encourage RCE technology cooperation amongst APEC economies with a view to contributing to sustainable and inclusive development; and
  8. Engage the private sector and academia more deeply and frequently in RCE related policymaking to support APEC cooperation and create more cooperative opportunities for RCE industries among APEC economies.

We are committed to create an enabling environment for RCE trade and investment to contribute to sustainable development and common prosperity in the Asia Pacific region. We direct officials to develop knowledge sharing and capacity-building activities relevant to implementing these actions, including exchanging views, experiences, and best practices to promote RCE trade and investment.

Annex C: APEC Customs 3M Strategic Framework

Customs plays a pivotal role in ensuring the safety and facilitation of international trade. The APEC Customs Community’s efforts on simplification and harmonization of regional customs procedures has greatly contributed to the reduction of APEC trade transaction costs and improvement in supply chain performance amongst APEC economies. With the conclusion of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement, the reform of Customs procedures will be playing a more proactive and decisive role in the course of attaining Bogor Goals by 2020, injecting fresh momentum into the regional economic integration and trade facilitation.

APEC leaders in 2013 vowed to take measures including promoting Single Window systems to modernize Customs procedures in order to achieve the institutional connectivity thus to reach a seamlessly and comprehensively connected and integrated Asia Pacific. Accordingly, APEC 2013 Tasking Statement (for 2014) has identified the priorities of APEC Customs as improving supply chain connectivity and enhancing Customs procedures with emphasis on Single Window and Authorized Economic Operator. Customs are also tasked to function in people-to-people connection and wildlife trafficking.

To this end, we instruct the senior officials, based on the initiative of “Mutual Recognition of Control, Mutual Assistance of Enforcement and Mutual Sharing of Information”, to promote APEC Customs cooperation in a systematic approach to advance the following pressing tasks that are generally acknowledged by APEC economies:

  1. Promoting Connectivity and Trade Facilitation
    • Implementation of the WTO Agreement on Trade Facilitation(ATF)
      • Short-term objectives: to update each other on the work done for the implementation of the ATF and share experience in this regard.
      • Long-term objectives: to prepare for the review of the operation and implementation of the ATF which will take place four(4) years after its entry into force, and to explore the possibility of implementing non-binding or best endeavor provisions of the ATF.
    • Single Window
      • Short-term objectives: to continue providing capacity building and technical support for member economies to establish and improve their individual Single Window with the least delay possible.
      • Long-term objectives: to realize interoperability of Single Window systems amongst APEC member economies.
    • Customs Transit
      • Short-term objectives: to work on Chokepoint 8, and formulate the guidelines for APEC Customs transit to address issues including lack of harmonization among APEC economies in granting preferential treatment to goods through third-party territories.
      • Long-term objectives: to carry out capacity building, implement Customs transit guidelines, conduct regular evaluations, and set up uniform arrangements of origin certification for transit goods so as to create a facilitated environment for Customs clearance and more foreseeable transit rules for international trade operators, improving the effectiveness and security of the supply chain.
  2. Enhancing Law Enforcement Capacity and Trade Order
    • IPR protection
      • Short-term objectives: to increase technical exchange and experience sharing among members, and improving law enforcement capacity on IPR border protection for Customs of member economies.
      • Long-term objectives: to set up a long-term mechanism for research and training on IPR border protection.
  3. Conducting Closer Cooperation with the Private Sector to Enhance Trade Security
    • Authorized Economic Operator (AEO)
      • Short-term objectives: to continue carrying out capacity building for the economies that have not established the AEO program and further advancing the formulation of the minimum standards for AEO enterprises, including the SMEs.
      • Long-term objectives: to continue the capacity building programs, promote AEO mutual recognition between member economies, and work out the benefit list of the AEO MRA to further facilitate the trade in the Asia-Pacific region.
    • Cross-border E-commerce
      • Short-term objectives: to increase the awareness of the risk control in the E-commerce in APEC Customs community and promote the cooperation with the business community by elevating the level of their information exchange on best practices.
      • Long-term objectives: to strengthen cooperation between APEC economies and the private sectors, to encourage self-discipline and compliance from the private sectors, to establish safe and efficient order on cross-border e-commerce so as to promote the economy and trade development in APEC.
  4. Applying Technology to Enhance the Efficiency of the Customs Control
    • Manifest Exchange between Land Border Customs
      • Short-term objectives: to encourage experience exchange between members that have carried out border Customs cooperation.
      • Long-term objectives: to explore the possibility of manifest data exchange between land bordering Customs in APEC region.

In addition to the above-mentioned key tasks, we support to push forward other ongoing projects including Trade Recovery, Time Release Study, etc. in order to ensure that goods and services move efficiently, effectively and safely through the region. We encourage APEC Customs to work closely with the private sector through the VWG to progress the priorities addressed at the borders.

Annex D: Action Agenda on Promoting Infrastructure Investment Through Public‐Private Partnership (PPP)

The infrastructure investment gap in the APEC region is huge, while governments alone cannot meet the investment requirements for infrastructure. In 2013, APEC endorsed Multi-Year Plan on Infrastructure Development and Investment, setting an important platform to work on infrastructure development and investment. In 2014, China put “Strengthening Comprehensive Development in Infrastructure and Connectivity” as one of the three priorities of APEC 2014.

Well-established infrastructure can facilitate trade and investment in other sectors. It can support supply chain connectivity and reduce trade barriers such as transaction costs for the region. Moreover, it will boost economic growth of both developed and developing economies in the APEC region. Especially, the lack of infrastructure is one key obstacle to the economic development in developing economies, and acts as a constraint to increasing cross-border investment in the APEC region. Extensive economic research shows that although the capital returns in many developing economies are higher than those in the developed economies, capital flow from the developed to the developing economies is less than economic models would suggest. Among many different explanations to this puzzle, the lack of infrastructure of the developing economies and lack of facilitating investment policies are widely accepted reasons.

There are mutual benefits for all the APEC members to cooperate in infrastructure investment, including through PPP. PPP, when suitably designed and fit for purpose, offer a viable alternative to public sector financing of infrastructure development, in that it can improve service quality, optimize use of resources, and alleviates fiscal constraints through sharing risks and responsibilities. At the same time, there is positive externality of one economy's infrastructure on the other economies. Therefore, the economic cooperation among APEC members on infrastructure investment, including through PPP modality, is very desirable.

On August 13th, 2014, IEG Public Private Dialogue on the theme of “Promoting Infrastructure Investment through PPP” was held in Beijing and carried out intensive discussion on PPP in Infrastructure Investment. Based on previous APEC works on PPP in infrastructure investment and recommendations made by the experts and participants at the 2014 IEG PPD, bearing in mind of the non-binding nature of APEC, economies has identified the following actions that will contribute to the overall objectives of APEC cooperation on regional connectivity and infrastructure. In pursuing these actions, IEG will coordinate with CTI, SFOM and other related APEC sub-fora, in order to prioritize resources and avoid duplication among the ongoing work:

  1. Promote continued policy dialogue on methods of financing infrastructure investment, including through the development of open, transparent, and accessible investment climates and by using PPP and other financing mechanisms. Such dialogue can raise awareness and common understanding of APEC economies on the definition, characteristics, merits and challenges of applying PPP modality in infrastructure investment, as well as creating policies conducive to infrastructure investment.
  2. Share good policies and practices, build interests among APEC economies in applying PPP modality including innovative financial mechanisms for infrastructure investment, and identify capacity building needs.
  3. Accelerate IEG’s work in assembling PPP Guidebook that aims to compile information on the variety of PPP frameworks already put in place by APEC economies. Consider future IEG work to address other mechanisms of facilitating private sector investment in the infrastructure sector including through public-private financing.
  4. Take ABAC Enablers of Infrastructure Checklist as a useful reference for economies to enhance government policies and operation to facilitate infrastructure investment through PPP, such as by strengthening government’s capacity in project planning and coordination, building a sound legal and regulatory environment, developing robust PPP models and frameworks, as well as creating and maintaining a transparent investment environment to attract foreign direct investment.
  5. Launch capacity building initiatives to address identified impediments in promoting PPP projects in infrastructure development and improve the ability of developing economies to better utilize PPP, develop policies conducive to investment, and facilitate infrastructure development and boost engagement of the private sector. These will be aligned with APEC’s Multi-Year Plan on Infrastructure Development and Investment.
  6. Encourage APEC economies to consider establishing functioning, well-trained PPP centers based on their needs and circumstances, to promote PPP as a method for facilitating infrastructure investment, and share experience, cooperate and coordinate on PPP development in the Asia-Pacific region.
  7. Strengthen collaboration between APEC economies, ABAC and private sectors, and international organizations such as World Bank, International Monetary Fund, OECD, Asian Development Bank, etc. with a view to sharing project information and enhancing effective deployment of financial and knowledge resources within and beyond the region.
  8. Enhance analytical work on PPP and promote collaboration among regional academia, including by exploring the potential for establishment of an APEC network of study bases, which could serve as an important analytical framework to promote PPP development and cooperation under the principle of mutual benefit.
  9. Continue APEC efforts to identify actions and best practices to develop a policy environment conducive to such investment.

Annex E: APEC Strategic Plan on Capacity Building to Promote Trade and Investment

Background

In 1995, APEC Leaders endorsed The Osaka Action Agenda and instructed to “pursue economic and technical cooperation in order to attain sustainable growth and equitable development in the Asia-Pacific region, while reducing economic disparities among APEC economies and improving economic and social well-being”, and acknowledged that “such efforts will also facilitate the growth of trade and investment in the region”.

In 1996, APEC Leaders endorsed the Subic Declaration and emphasized that as an essential complement to APEC’s trade and investment liberalization agenda, economic and technical cooperation helps APEC members to participate more fully in and benefit from an open global trading environment, thus ensuring that liberalized trade contributes to sustainable growth, equitable development and to a reduction in economic disparities. APEC Leaders also acknowledged that economic and technical cooperation (ECOTECH) and trade and investment liberalization and facilitation are mutually complementary and supportive.

After 20 years of economic cooperation based on the framework of free and open trade and investment, APEC could take further steps to strengthen its cooperative mode through mutually reinforcing ECOTECH and APEC’s trade and investment agenda, based on its voluntary and non-binding principle. APEC’s comparative advantage in capacity building, due to the diversity of APEC economies, robust, high level commitments, and valuable experience in this area, could provide a significant contribution to implementing its expanded trade and investment agenda. APEC should also explore how to use capacity building in more effective ways to enable Leaders and Ministers to make ambitious commitments with regard to facilitating and liberalizing trade and investment.

APEC consists of diverse economies at different stages of development. Currently, the new trends of globalization and rapid technological change offer unprecedented opportunities for economic growth and employment. But they also pose new challenges for APEC economies, especially the developing economies, as we respond to these changing economic circumstances.

Trade and investment liberalization, supported by effective and targeted capacity building programs, can help economies achieve inclusive and sustainable growth, and advance regional integration. Therefore, it is critical for the CTI, in coordination with the SCE and BMC, to develop a strategic plan which would identify economies’ capacity building needs in the context of ambitious trade and investment commitments by Leaders and Ministers, and address these identified capacity-building needs in a more systematic and focused manner. Such a strategic Plan would contribute to more coordinated efforts and outcomes in promoting and carrying forward APEC’s trade and investment agenda.

Proposed Actions

In order to view capacity building from a longer-term perspective, broaden the one-off activities to encompassing more systematic programs, and to achieve more lasting and impactful outcomes in promoting APEC’s trade and investment agenda, China proposes APEC economies agree to this Strategic Plan which may include, but is not limited to the following elements:

  • Stock take and assess previous capacity building activities. The APEC Secretariat could be tasked to provide an inventory, analysis and evaluation on previous and current capacity building activities undertaken by CTI and its sub-fora, assist in coordinating the development and implementation of various capacity building activities, and make recommendations for future actions.
  • Share best practice among APEC economies and other related agencies. Carry out topical workshops and case studies to exchange and demonstrate successful cases and experiences on developing and implementing high-quality capacity building activities, such as the regional economic integration Capacity-Building Needs Initiative (CBNI), supply chain connectivity etc. Discuss and identify principles and ways to develop more tailor-made capacity programs to contribute to the core trade and investment agenda of APEC, especially in the priority areas such as the Bogor Goals, supply chain connectivity, global value chains, regulatory coherence, environmental goods and services, and the FTAAP.
  • Design integrated and multi-faceted programs based on the identified capacity building needs. Strengthen cooperative efforts and provide targeted trade-related technical assistance and capacity building to increase the capacity of developing economies to participate in the regional and multilateral economic cooperation and ultimately use trade and investment friendly policies to help achieve their economic goals; develop and implement longer term capacity building projects. In order to achieve this, a comprehensive survey on the capacity building needs based on currently work will be conducted at CTI and its sub-fora in 2014. The CTI should also emphasize the importance of monitoring and evaluation to ensure that resources are being utilized in a way that maximizes their impact.
  • Mobilize more resources to support the capacity building programs. Encourage member economies and other interested parties to make additional contributions to existing APEC Funds. Encourage member economies to take individual actions on voluntary basis to provide any forms of assistance. Encourage international relevant international organizations and other stakeholders to contribute to this process, including with respect to implementation and evaluation of projects.

Annex F: APEC Initiative of Cooperation to Promote Internet Economy

I. The importance of promoting the Internet Economy

The world economy is now undergoing great transformation, more integrated and globalized than ever before. This trend is gaining momentum with the spread of the Internet. The Internet Economy, as a working definition, includes the range of economic activities stemming from or using the Internet and connection technologies. As a new economic phenomenon, such technologies are lowering barriers to economic participation, and the Internet Economy empowers economic participants using e-commerce, instant messaging, search engines, online media, internet finance, and other means.

The ICT revolution has produced cloud computing, big data, machine learning, machine-to-machine communication, and great advances in mobility and remote access, all innovations stemming from or related to the Internet.  With these new technologies, we are discovering new ways to put them to use.

In recent years, information and communications technologies have become integrated into many traditional industries, transforming how they do business. The Internet is connecting businesses and resulting in a new, more integrated economic ecosystem. We see these technologies facilitating trade, access to information empowering customers, and increasing opportunities for small and micro enterprises as well as individual entrepreneurs.

In the past industrial era, large corporations were sometimes the only ones able to apply advanced technologies, and they have advantages in taking on large-scale challenges, but new information and connection technologies are opening up the economy, jobs and growth to SMEs and individuals.

As mobile technologies advance and computing becomes embedded in a wider array of devices, we foresee technology becoming increasingly scannable, pliable, wearable and drivable. This ubiquity may cause the devices to fade into the background of a digital environment and change how people experience information and connectivity.

New innovations in finance and payments are also facilitating a wide variety of small-scale commerce and economic activity as well as serving many who have been historically underserved by the formal financial sector. Recognizing this will raise new policy questions, we see demonstrated value in innovations to include:  mobile money and micro-financing, lightweight payment technologies, P2P lending, and crowd funding. Such innovations are also challenging many traditional models and spurring new and improved services to the public in sectors such as asset management, insurance, medical care and health management

The Internet Economy is an effective carrier of economic reform, innovation and sustainable growth.  It has ushered in an era of mass innovation, expanding the space of prosperity; has the potential to turn individuals into an economic growth point. It benefits each and every social stratum, contributing in particular to the growth of the middle class. It has boosted the employment of the destabilizing and the vulnerable groups such as the youth, women and the disabled.

At the macro-level, the Internet Economy may help developed economies stimulate flagging economic growth rates, while providing developing economies a less painful way to overcome the "middle income trap". The growth of the Internet Economy can help satisfy people's aspiration for inclusive and high-quality prosperity in the information era.

Nevertheless, the Internet Economy will produce policy or regulatory challenges. We should be sensitive, as our economies are increasingly interconnected, of the risks of unintended consequences from laws and policies. Laws and regulations often lag behind new technologies, and we should be engaged with each other so our respective efforts are effective and to minimize inadvertent affects across the regional economy.

II. APEC's constructive role in promoting the Internet Economy

With diversified markets and users, the Asia-Pacific region is at the forefront of the Internet Economy. Internet and mobile device subscribers in the region account for 45% and 50% of the world's total. The region has witnessed an explosive growth of the Internet Economy and boasts the largest number of online shoppers in the world.

Demand by SMEs and individuals for access to credit, transactions, and other financial services in the Internet Economy has spurred many new innovations and spurred rapid growth in the Asia-Pacific region. Innovations in online and mobile micro-financing have enabled new economic activity and grass-roots economic participation by individuals as well as SMEs.

This sort of economic activity, which we see in the Internet Economy and is resulting in economic new opportunities and greater inclusiveness and prosperity, is the type of dynamic growth APEC has sought to promote since its establishment.

APEC, as a premier forum for enhancing economic growth and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region, has long been committed to promoting internet economy since the adoption of APEC Blueprint for Action on Electronic Commerce in its annual Leaders’ meeting in 1998 and the establishment of the APEC Electronic Commerce Steering Group (ECSG) in 1999, aiming to promote the development and use of electronic commerce by creating legal, regulatory and policy environments in the APEC region. The work was followed by the highlighting of the use of ICTs in the world economic development in the Action Agenda for New Economy, the e-APEC Strategy and the Statement to Implement APEC Policies on Trade and the Digital Economy endorsed by APEC Leaders in their annual meetings in 2000, 2001 and 2002 respectively.

Further to it, goals of achieving universal access to broadband in all APEC economies by 2015 and achieving access to next generation, high speed broadband by 2020 were endorsed by Ministers in 2009 and 2010, so as to enable economies to access more benefits of ICTs that increase economic efficiencies and productivity, utilize smart ICT applications, and improve the livelihoods of people in APEC economies, and stimulate economic growth in the APEC region. Once more, the use of ICT was recognized by our Leaders as a crucial driver for further integration in the APEC region in 2012. And our Ministers also encouraged members to “expand the application of safe and trusted ICT and e-commerce environment”, and “explore the possibility of implementation a one-stop shop for online transactions”, and to provide all the procedures and services “required to export and e-commerce across boundaries promote the easiness of doing business” in their Joint Ministerial Statement in 2013.

In 2014, APEC continues to carry out the work on promoting the Internet Economy. In February, the Concept Paper "Developing the Internet Economy through Enhanced ICT Cooperation" was endorsed in SOM 1 in Ningbo. In April, the APEC Telecommunications and Information Working Group (TELWG) held a Roundtable on the Internet Economy in Yangzhou, where representatives from member economies and internet enterprises envisaged the bright future of the Internet Economy in the Asia-Pacific region. In May, during SOM 2 in Qingdao, members agreed to incorporate the Internet Economy under agenda Priority Two -- "Promote Innovative Development, Economic Reform and Growth" -- as a key cooperation area of the "new economy" pillar.

III. Proposed Actions

Observing established guidelines focusing on practical economic cooperation, respecting the diversity of APEC members, we propose the following cooperative actions with a view to seizing the opportunity to promote the growth of the Internet Economy:

  1. Establish an Ad Hoc Steering Group consists of APEC member economies, related fora and ABAC to discuss issues arising from the Internet Economy, propose actions, and encourage collaboration across multiple APEC fora.
  2. Promote technological exchanges with stakeholders in member economies.
  3. Organize entrepreneurship and skill training on the Internet Economy to facilitate capacity building and encourage entrepreneurship and innovation. Recalling the 2009 APEC Digital Prosperity Checklist, organize training programs to help developing member economies bridge the digital divide.
  4. Continue work to realize the goal of achieving universal access to broadband by 2015 and universal access to the next generation, ultrahigh-speed broadband by 2020 in the APEC region, as well as promoting IPv4 to IPv6 transition.

    While we strive to benefit more from the Internet Economy and new technologies, we note the importance of continued work to ensure robust, reliable and resilient infrastructure.  

    Continue activities in promoting confidence and trust in electronic environments globally by encouraging secure cross border flows of information, including electronic documents. Reaffirm the necessity of multi-stakeholder cooperation to continue efforts to expand and strengthen the Asia-Pacific Information Infrastructure and to build confidence and security in the Internet Economy.
  5. Leverage the Internet Economy to foster an enabling environment and inclusive economic participation to allow people to improve their own lives.  We note the potential for technologies to empower vulnerable and disadvantaged groups like women, young people, people with disabilities, and the poor.
  6. Support the healthy development of innovative Internet finance. We commit to promote safe, efficient, low-cost and inclusive financial services to enable SMEs and individuals to share the benefits of economic development, with a view to building an open, cooperative, and safe environment for the Internet Economy. We propose a dialogue bringing together a balanced group of stakeholders to explore innovative new ways to serve the underserved.
  7. Explore how "mobility" may help facilitate economic activity and promote APEC goals. As mobile devices become more ubiquitous connection technologies will change how we experience the Internet and interact with an increasingly rich information environment. We propose TEL open a dialogue of these topics, inclusive of stakeholders and other fora, to explore these topics.
  8. Promote the development of Internet of Things (IOT). The deployment embedded sensors and computing, machine to machine communication, and the development of improved analytics will be transformative and offer many benefits but also raise new policy questions. We propose TEL initiate discussion of these topics and their policy considerations, promoting deployment of such technologies.

Annex G: APEC Ocean Cooperation in the Asia Pacific Region

APEC members share one ocean, and they account for over 80% of global aquaculture production.  The ocean is an important conduit for 90% of world trade, and connects people, markets and livelihoods, as well as providing ecosystem services and playing an important role towards fulfilling economic recovery and prosperity of the Asia Pacific region.

APEC recognizes the need to conserve and sustain the ocean so that it can continue to meet the needs of the present without damaging the interests of future generations. It is also mindful of increasing challenges both from natural and human factors, such as over-exploitation of resources in the context of increasing human demands, increasing pollution, loss of biodiversity, and the impacts of global climate change and natural disasters. APEC is an important platform for regional economic integration and growth, and a well-placed platform for discussion and cooperation related to the ocean.

We acknowledge and seek to build upon previous work in this area, which came out of guidance from APEC Leaders’ Declarations, APEC Leaders’ Growth Strategy, and the 2013 Joint Ministerial Statement and commitments made in the 2002 Seoul Ocean Declaration, the 2005 Bali Plan of Action, the 2010 Paracas Declaration and Paracas Action Agenda, and in particular the Xiamen Declaration, which is the outcome document of the 4th APEC Ocean-related Ministerial Meeting (AOMM4) held in Xiamen, China, on 28 August, 2014.  We also commend the progress made by the Ocean and Fisheries Working Group in these years

We confirm that “for the purposes of APEC, the APEC Ocean and Fisheries Working Group views Blue Economy as an approach to advance sustainable management and conservation of ocean and coastal resources and ecosystems and sustainable development, in order to foster economic growth”.  We also recognize the importance of the APEC Marine Sustainable Development Report, which provides an overview of marine sustainable development activities within APEC.

While progress has been made in APEC, particularly over the past few years, we also recognize that the world’s oceans and seas still require better understanding and coordinated action and the urgent need for ocean cooperation due to the complex and trans-boundary nature of ocean and coastal issues and challenge.  We support the call made by APEC Ocean-Related Ministers in the Xiamen Declaration for the establishment of more integrated, sustainable, inclusive and mutually beneficial partnership through ocean cooperation among APEC members, that implements previous commitments and focuses efforts on collaborative and concerted actions in the following four priority areas: (1) Coastal and marine ecosystem conservation and disaster resilience; (2) The role of the ocean on food security and food-related trade; (3) Marine science, technology and innovation; and (4) Blue Economy.

We welcome the Xiamen Declaration and support the actions within it in the hopes of supporting healthy and productive oceans and coasts in the APEC region.

Annex H: Beijing Declaration on Fighting Corruption

We APEC member economies recognize that corruption impedes economic sustainability and development, threatens social security and fairness, undermines the rule of law, and erodes government accountability, as well as public trust. We reaffirm the Santiago Commitment to Fight Corruption and Ensure Transparency, the APEC Course of Action on Fighting Corruption and Ensuring Transparency, as well as the Vladivostok Declaration on Fighting Corruption and Ensuring Transparency, which reflect our continued commitments to combat corruption across all sectors, including public sector and private sector, in the Asia Pacific region. We commend the Anti-Corruption and Transparency (ACT) Working Group for guiding us in strengthening our resolve to effectively fight corruption across borders, and for its commitment over the years to working across APEC subfora, with the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), and with key regional and international partners.

We highly applaud the continued contributions of all APEC member economies to protect integrity and promote transparency and participation of society in the Asia-Pacific region. Acknowledging that increased global connectivity demands vigorous international cooperation to successfully combat corruption, we urge member economies to further intensify our collective efforts in the fight against corruption by strengthening existing cooperation and developing new areas of international collaboration within the APEC ACT framework.

With this vision in mind, we hereby call for more concerted efforts for international cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region, subject to domestic laws and policies, through the following actions:

  • Reaffirming our commitment to denying safe haven to those engaged in corruption, including through extradition, mutual legal assistance, and the recovery and return of proceeds of corruption; considering the adoption of more flexible approaches enabled by domestic legislation for recovery of proceeds of corruption; and striving to expedite international cooperation in the prevention, investigation, prosecution, and punishment of corruption offenses.
  • Strengthening information sharing among APEC economies, according to domestic laws, concerning cross-border movements of public officials involved in corruption criminal investigations and their illicitly acquired assets, as an effort to help combat corruption, bribery and illicit financial flows to the utmost extent; and calling for transparency of beneficial ownership of legal persons and legal arrangements as consistent with the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) definition, aimed at more effective prevention and detection of corruption.
  • Looking anew at the potential of enhancing bilateral cooperation to fight corruption through the use of existing international legal instruments such as the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) and the United Nations Convention on Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC), and relevant initiatives like the APEC Course of Action on Fighting Corruption and Ensuring Transparency; encouraging member economies , where appropriate, to sign and conclude bilateral extradition treaties and mutual legal assistance agreements; and welcoming anti-corruption programs that follow successful models.
  • Establishing the APEC Network of Anti-Corruption Authorities and Law Enforcement Agencies (ACT-NET) with an Office responsible for daily administrative tasks, and looking forward to the development of the ACT-NET as an informal network for sharing information and exchanging best practices and techniques among anti-corruption and law enforcement authorities in the Asia-Pacific region, to assist in detecting, investigating and prosecuting corruption, bribery, money laundering, and illicit trade.
  • Strengthening international cooperation efforts through the support of and participation in ACT-NET and other multilateral networks; exploring the potential of other existing mechanisms, where appropriate, such as UNCAC, UNTOC, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), FATF, and the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG), to promote effective international, regional and bilateral cooperation between and among law enforcement, prosecutorial, regulatory and financial intelligence entities; and supporting the development and introduction of new anti-corruption tools and initiatives, such as jurisdiction-specific guidebooks, to provide technical assistance to anti-corruption and law enforcement authorities in member economies.
  • Collectively pursuing efforts to nurture fair and open markets, and encouraging member economies to initiate, enact, implement, and continually perfect, where appropriate, legislation prohibiting bribery; recognizing the importance of intensifying cross-border cooperation to prevent, investigate and prosecute bribery; encouraging member economies to broaden and strengthen dialogues between governments and business communities in the fight against bribery; and welcoming tools and guidelines developed by member economies in this regardFootnote 1 .
  • Cooperating on anti-corruption cases through all feasible measures within the bounds of each economy’s laws and regulations, and facilitating administrative arrangements for officials cooperating with each other in APEC member economies.
  • Taking all necessary measures in accordance with fundamental legal principles of each economy to implement and promote transparency, including strengthening corruption prevention bodies and anti-corruption policies, as well as welcoming the participation of society; establishing measures and systems to protect whistleblowers; attaching great importance to capacity building of anti-corruption and law enforcement authorities; and advancing exchanges, personnel training and technical assistance for member economies.

    Building upon our past commitments to fight corruption and ensure transparency, we shall lead by example to continue our fight against corruption in the Asia-Pacific region. With fresh vigor and renewed momentum, we will take concrete actions and pursue additional effective measures as necessary to safeguard our common interests in social security, market integrity, the rule of law, and sustainable growth.

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Including the APEC Principles on the Prevention of Bribery and Enforcement of Anti-bribery Laws and the APEC General Elements of Effective Corporate Compliance Programs.

Return to footnote 1 referrer