The Asia-Pacific region remains the engine of economic growth and integration, SOM chair tells gathering.
The first APEC Senior Officials Meeting (SOM1) opened on March 2 in the coastal city of Nha Trang, with the participation of representatives from the 21 APEC member economies.
According to a report from the Vietnam News Agency, in his opening address, Deputy Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son, who is the APEC 2017 SOM Chair, said the Asia-Pacific region remains the engine of global economic growth and integration and a pioneer in advancing trade and investment liberalization in the world.
Referring to the fact that global and regional economic growth remains slow, global trade is weak, and investment is subdued, while there are many uncertainties in the world, he still expressed his belief that “APEC has all the resources, potential and capabilities to overcome these challenges and turn them into drivers of further growth and development.”
“As a grouping of dynamic economies, our region can and will continue to move ahead on the path of development and prosperity,” he stressed.
Mr. Son said that, at SOM1, delegates will hear reports and recommendations that have come out of APEC committees and working group discussions, and can exchange views on how to advance APEC’s agenda in the four priority areas to help it affirm its relevance and role as the premier regional economic forum.
He expected that delegates would have in-depth discussions on ways to promote the inclusiveness of APEC, to ensure that the growth, globalization and free and open trade and investment that APEC is championing will be beneficial to all people and do not leave anyone behind.
In the morning session, Mr. Son highlighted the priorities for APEC 2017 and briefed participants on the key outcomes of the Informal Senior Officials Meeting (ISOM), which was held in Hanoi last December.
The Chair of the Finance Senior Officials Meeting is to brief those in attendance on the work of the Finance Ministers Process in 2017, including the outcomes of the Finance and Central Bank Deputies Meeting convened in Nha Trang city on February 23-24.
The Chair of the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) is scheduled to present the ABAC process and plans for 2017, including the outcomes of the ABAC-SOM Dialogue that was organized in Bangkok, Thailand, on February 21-22.
The Chair of the Economic Committee (EC) is to report on the outcomes of the EC’s first meeting, including the EC’s priorities for 2017 and the implementation of the Individual Action Plans (IAPs) under the Renewed APEC Agenda for Structural Reform (RAASR).