Apec is recognized as the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum, made up of 21 member countries.

The main idea behind the emergence of the Apec is to ensure that the so-called Asia-Pacific region achieves the highest level of well-being, as well as adequate economic growth in a sustained manner.

  • Therefore, it was originally supported by twelve countries in 1989, these countries were: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and the United States.
  • So it is currently made up of 21 economies, which are listed in alphabetical order: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Russian Federation, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, the United States, Vietnam.
  • Since, between 1991 and 1998 Hong Kong is included with the recognition of Hong Kong, China and Taiwan with the name of China, Taipei. These two economies were included as independent from the country of Mainland China.
  • For this reason, there are actually 19 countries in the pact, but with Hong Kong and Taiwan, 21 economies are added.
  • Since then, over the years, no country has been suspended.
  • Since the recognition of the 21 economies takes place in 2010, while for 2011 the accession of new members was no longer considered.

Generalities of the Apec

The Apec is an institutional consultation forum at the intergovernmental level where issues on economic cooperation at the interregional level are discussed.

Since then. it is based on a sense of community to energize the economy, through cooperation and the promotion of free trade.

Main objectives of Apec

Among the main objectives that Apec tries to achieve are:

  1. Promote economic growth in the Asia-Pacific region; as well as the development of these countries, in order to contribute to the common welfare of their citizens and thus help the growth and improvement of the world economy.
  2. Strengthen profit and profit regionally and internationally. Through the free flow of services and merchandise; also with interdependence and collaboration in technology and capital goods.
  3. Strengthen the conditions of free trade in a multilateral way, to take advantage of in a real way the conditions of the comparative advantages of all the economies that compose it and that can benefit through this integration.
  4. Achieve the reduction and elimination of barriers and all kinds of obstacles to international trade activity and the flow of investment capital; among all the economies that participate in the organization of the Apec.

For this reason, these important objectives of the APEC were realized in the city of Seoul, capital of South Korea in the year of 1,991.

Structure of the Apec

The Apec is not considered an organization at the international level, because it does not have in its formation the signing of a free trade agreement or a charter. For this reason, its constitution model is flexible and informal.

Apparently, it is a pattern of international cooperation with a model very different from the traditional structure of all existing international organizations in the world economy. Due to this, all important decisions are established by consensus, which generates a high degree of commitment to establish and implement rules, which will naturally be respected.

Institutional training and meetings

Meeting types

The types of meetings that are held in the context of the Apec can be of the following types:

Leaders Summits

The leaders' summits are held when all the governments and heads of state of the 21 economies that make up the Apec meet annually.

  • The first summit of leaders was held in the city of Seattle, United States in the year of 1,993.
  • The leaders' summits are held in the cities of the member countries that, at that time, have assumed the presidency of the APEC forum.
  • The dialogue that takes place in these summits is very useful due to the informality and flexibility that characterize it.

Meetings of Senior Officials

These types of meetings are held four or five times a year, they are held to finalize the decisions that arise from the Leaders' Summit.

  • Actually, these meetings are what develop the Apec's operating process.
  • Senior officials are the ambassadors of each of the countries and their role is to coordinate their country's participation in the processes and functions of the Apec.

Permanent Secretariat of the Apec

The Permanent Secretary of the APEC is located in Singapore and has been in operation since 1993.

This secretariat works with few professionals who are generally members of foreign ministries or finance ministries of some of the member countries.

  • These public officials work in this secretariat on loan, for an estimated period of more or less three years.
  • There are also administrative staff recruited in Singapore and they are led by a person serving as the Executive Director and by an Alternate Executive Director. Both must be from the country that has the presidency of the APEC at that time.
  • The main function of this secretariat is to provide support to the country that holds the presidency of the organization, especially with the handling of the necessary information and documents.

Important topics of the Apec

Among the most important issues that the Apec deals with, we find the fight against terrorism, especially illicit arms trafficking. This after the terrorist attack that the United States suffered in 2011.

This leads to having stricter controls on exports, strengthening security and establishing production and transfer regulations, among others.

Finally, we can affirm that the objective that has the highest priority in the Apec is to achieve economic growth in a sustainable way in the Asia-Pacific region. To achieve this, the most important basis used by the Apec forum is to secure the conditions for free trade and investment; as well as economic cooperation and integration.

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