APEC launches Putrajaya Vision 2040, eyeing economic cooperation
Published: Nov 21, 2020 01:08 AM

Photo: AFP

 The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum launched the Putrajaya Vision 2040 on Friday, vowing that the world's most dynamic regional economies will cooperate toward building an open, dynamic, resilient and peaceful Asia-Pacific.

The group said member countries will continue to work together to deliver a free, open, fair, non-discriminatory, transparent and predictable trade and investment environment, according to a statement about Putrajaya Vision 2040.

APEC also stressed the need for multilateralism against the backdrop of rising unilateralism, protectionism and anti-globalization. "We reaffirm our support for agreed-upon rules of the WTO in delivering a well-functioning multilateral trading system and promoting the stability and predictability of international trade flows," read the statement.

In addition, the statement said the region will optimize the business environment, with a focus on digitization and innovation. "We will strengthen digital infrastructure, accelerate digital transformation, narrow the digital divide and cooperate on facilitating the flow of data and strengthening consumer and business trust in digital transactions," it stated.

"China is leading globalization," Wang Yiwei, director of the institute of international affairs at Renmin University of China, told the Global Times on Friday.

He said the APEC statement will activate the global interconnection of organizations. China upholds open regionalism, promotes the interconnection of various regions, and builds a community with a shared future for mankind.

The goal came as the global economy faces downward pressure, as the global pandemic has threatened trade, investment, people exchanges and value chain stability. The multilateral trade system with the WTO at the core has also come under pressure, impeding the Asia-Pacific integration process.

Data from APEC showed that the region's economic growth contracted 3.7 percent in the first half of the year, the first contraction in over 30 years.

To ensure that the Asia-Pacific region is resilient to shocks, crises, pandemics and other emergencies, member countries will foster quality growth that brings palpable benefits and greater health and wellbeing to all, according to the statement.

"We will promote economic policies, cooperation and growth that support global efforts to comprehensively address all environmental challenges, including climate change, extreme weather and natural disasters, for a sustainable planet," it stated.

Global Times

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