Indonesia expects APEC to remain open and free

Da Nang, Vietnam (ANTARA News) – Indonesia has expressed hope that the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) will continue to serve as an open and free regional forum.

“(First), we expect APEC to continuously serve as an open and free regional forum; second, we must create inclusive growth; and third, (we need to) develop innovative economy in coordination with technological development,” Indonesian Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, AM Fachir, said here on Thursday.

He made the remarks prior to the 23rd APEC Summit, which will be held here on Nov 10 and 11. Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) is set to attend the two-day summit.

“We are interested in understanding how our community can directly benefit from the commitments. As a maritime country, we will inevitably raise the issue of how to benefit from maritime (sources) in the interest (of our economy),” he stated.

The issue of farmers and fishermen will be solved depending on how APEC will give a greater chance to them, he noted.

The World Bank has predicted that the APEC economy may grow 6.2 percent this year. Hence, Indonesia must be able to benefit from the inclusive and innovative economy, he added.

He also stated that each APEC member has different opinions at any international meeting.

“We cannot avoid domestic interests. However, we must keep the commitment of the Bogor Goals to create open regionalism. We must keep the commitment. Should dynamic emerge, it will depend on each economic entity to respond to it as competition is inevitable,” he revealed.

The APEC Summit will focus on discussing several issues, including sustainable economy, regional integration, strengthening the competitive edge of micro small and medium businesses, climate change, and agriculture.

This year, APEC enters the phase of finalizing the Bogor Goals on liberalizing trade and investment in 2020.

APEC comprises Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Taipei, Thailand, the United States, and Vietnam.

The APEC members represent 39 percent of the global population and contributes 57 percent of the global gross domestic product and 49 percent of the global trade.(*)

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