APEC members laud Vietnam’s initiatives

08:23 | 11/06/2017 Cooperation

(VEN) - Representatives of the 21-nation Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum are praising the initiatives and discussion topics proposed by Vietnam as host of the APEC 2017 events. These include measures to strengthen economic linkages and regional connectivity, deepen cooperation among member countries to promote sustainable and inclusive growth, and support for very small, small and medium enterprises. Vietnam Economic News’ Hoang Hang and Hoa Quynh recorded their opinions on the sidelines of the 23rd APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade Meeting (MRT 23) that took place in Hanoi on May 20-21.

JOHN DRUMMON D, Head of Trade in Services Division, Trade and Agriculture Directorate, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development: Right ways

All practices and objectives of APEC look towards a free trade area of the Asia-Pacific to increase prosperity for citizens of member economies. There are many ways to achieve this, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). The TPP, RCEP, and other initiatives will be the right ways to promote cooperation between APEC member economies. Trade and creativity, topics proposed by the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade, are very important. Vietnam has achieved great progress in pursuing regional trade liberalization and has shown its growing role in the region.

Alison Mann, Director General of the Asia-Pacific Regional Integration Division under the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade:

Ready to cope with challenges

The goal of the New Zealand delegation to the second APEC Senior Officials Meeting (SOM 2) is to seek ways to implement priorities proposed by Vietnam and approved at SOM 1 in March 2017. New Zealand highly values Vietnam’s proposals and stands ready to work closely with Vietnam in such efforts along the way. As Chair of the Working Group on Free Trade Agreements, New Zealand will help member economies devise action programs to clear obstacles to trade liberalization. New Zealand will promote the agenda until 2021 and is partnering with Vietnam and other member economies on the issue.

John Karr, Senior Director, Digital Media and Technology Programs, The Asia Foundation:
Creating a favorable environment for MSMEs

Micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are still considered the backbones of APEC member economies. MSMEs are the driving force of technology application, creativity and modernization. However, the owners of small businesses from developing economies in the Asia-Pacific region still face a number of challenges when seeking access to cross-border trade, including material facilities, finance and local regulations. We should create a favorable environment for MSMEs to bring their creativity into full play to promote their growth. Digital applications have helped minimize export costs, facilitating MSMEs’ market access and allowing them to take advantage of global value chains.

Yasuhiko Yoshida, Deputy Director of Trade Policy Department, Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry:
Further deepening global value chains

In the era of rapidly developing digital economies, the relationship between humans and machines, as well as among humans and businesses, will go beyond normal frameworks, creating new values for society. We need to take suitable measures to further deepen global value chains and enhance the awareness of this concept in the Asia-Pacific region. We welcome and support Vietnam’s sustainable, creative and inclusive growth initiatives, which will help member economies achieve their development goals and increase community strength for the entire Asia-Pacific region. To narrow the gap between member economies, we need to create a favorable business environment, enhance competitiveness and continue to promote inclusive growth in APEC.

Tran Quoc Khanh, Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade:
Enhancing the role of MSMEs

We highly appreciate the contributions of APEC member economies, especially priorities for MSMEs. Vietnam is cooperating tightly with Peru and Thailand to build an APEC strategy for green and sustainable development of MSMEs. We are seeking cooperation from other member economies to promote regional economic growth. APEC member economies should integrate MSMEs into global value chains.

Ambassador Donald Campbell, Co-Chair of the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC):
Inclusive growth is very important

APEC economies are witnessing historical changes in the global economy. The growth of APEC economies has been promoted, bringing in jobs and benefits for consumers and upgrading technology. However, APEC’s growth should be put in a suitable context to deal with socioeconomic challenges brought about by changes. Although the Asia-Pacific region remains a driving force of global economic growth, this growth is not inclusive, or put another way, the gap between the rich and the poor is still big. Therefore, it’s very important to achieve inclusive growth and ensure that economic growth will benefit all people in society. Sustainable growth is necessary to deal with environmental problems and climate change.

Hoang Hang & Hoa Quynh