PECC Discussion Forum
The PECC Discussion Forum provides op-eds and relevant news in the PECC community. The opinions contained in the Discussion Forum submissions are the sole responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of PECC or its member committees.
Blog posts tagged in apec
Co-Chair Pacific Economic Cooperation Council
The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum celebrates its 25th anniversary this year. This milestone presents a chance for reflection on achievements as well as the future. Although most think of APEC in terms of the Bogor Goals of free trade and investment, these were the chosen means to an end — that end being “accelerated, balanced and equitable economic growth not only in the Asia-Pacific region, but throughout the world as well”.
Since 1989, the average income in the region has tripled from around US$5,000 to above $15,000. Asia- Pacific is now the world’s strongest growth center. The non-OECD economies of Asia-Pacific, notably China, have evolved into great traders. Asia-Pacific has also caught up very fast in the origination and hosting of the cross-border flows of capital and people. More importantly, the number of people living on less than $2 a day in the region has dropped from close to 1.2 billion to 412 million.
Senior Fellow, Institute of Southeast Asian Studies
If Indian Prime Minister Modi accepts Chinese President Xi’s surprise (to the other members of APEC and to India) invitation to attend the APEC Leaders Meeting in Beijing in November, it will bring India closer to its twenty-year goal of becoming an APEC member economy. In 2005, I supported the continued thwarting of this Indian aspiration for what I thought were sound, APEC-based reasons. (http://www.lowyinstitute.org/publications/how-save-apec)
Nine years on, the regional trade diplomacy picture has fundamentally changed while APEC has not. The Doha Round’s continuing comatose state has underpinned a continuing proliferation of bilateral preferential trade deals and an attempt at an Asia-Pacific regional trade deal (the Trans-Pacific Partnership) and an ASEAN-based, East Asian one (The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership).
Head (Partnerships & Programmes) and Senior Research Fellow
The Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS)
India is not a member of the APEC notwithstanding its long history of cultural and commercial exchanges with several APEC members. While this might seem odd, the absence is not difficult to explain.
India was hardly a blip on the region’s radar when the ‘flying geese’ began fanning their wings after the 2nd World War, drawing struggling economies with colonial pasts into a well-knitted architecture of explosive export growth combining cheap labour, embodied technology and disciplined organization practices. India’s inward-looking defensive trade policy, coupled with commitment to non-alignment and ideological discomfort with laissez faire and open trade policies, ensured its distance from the APEC remained far and unbridgeable.
Secretary General, Pacific Economic Cooperation Council
The APEC leaders’ meeting in Bali is over. The week-long series of events were but the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the APEC process. APEC is an institutionalized process with thousands of experts attending more than 100 meetings, all competing for a mention in the leaders’ statement.
Each year, the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC) conducts a survey on what opinion leaders think the priorities should be from a list of 30.
Professor Emeritus, Hitotsubashi University, Japan
This year Indonesian host has tried to highlight the Bogor Goals so that we have been invited to report directly our IAP review study at Committee for Trade and Investment (CTI) Workshop in Medan, ABAC3 in Kyoto, and ASCC in Jakarta, that is all tripartite stakeholders , officials, business, and academics in July. By and large our report was welcomed and mentioned in the recommendation letters by the last two to the APEC Leaders.
Peter A. Petri
Non-resident Senior Fellow with the East-West Center
Professor of International Finance at Brandeis University
Republished from the East West Center
(This analysis originally appeared in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser on Oct. 16, 2011 as part of a monthly series on regional Asia Pacific issues leading up to the APEC leaders’ meetings in Honolulu in November)
In the last half century, world trade has grown twice as fast as output and helped to lift the majority of the world’s people from poverty—a feat unimaginable a generation ago. When APEC leaders meet in Honolulu next month, they will represent countries that account for half of world trade. Can APEC help to keep the engine humming for another half century?