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New Zealand hosts extraordinary APEC leaders meeting to discuss COVID-19 issues
Kind: ICD What's New  Organization: Department of International Cooperation  Publish Date: 2021-07-23 14:30
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern chaired a virtual meeting of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders on July 16, 2021, to discuss collective action on the issue of the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic impact.

It marked the first time an extraordinary APEC leaders meeting has ever been convened since the forum’s founding in 1989. The formal gathering is scheduled to be held in November.

In the meeting, participants approved the "APEC Economic Leaders' Statement: Overcoming COVID-19 and Accelerating Economic Recovery," which encourages APEC members to engage in collaboration on COVID-19 diagnosis and treatment, accelerate equitable access to safe and effective vaccines, expand vaccine production and sharing, facilitate the flow of goods and services, and resume safe cross-border travel.

APEC members also pledged in the statement to use economic policy to spur economic recovery and harness innovative opportunities to help individuals and businesses, including women and MSMEs, as well as to reaffirm the importance of responding to climate change and other environmental challenges, promoting sustainable financing, fostering digital transformation, bridging the digital divide, and working for a free and fair trade and investment environment to respond to the pandemic’s impact.

APEC is home to more than 2.9 billion people and represents roughly 60 percent of world GDP and nearly 50 percent of global trade.

New Zealand’s policy priorities as the host for APEC 2021 are shaped by the COVID-19 crisis and are focused on bringing the region together to promote an inclusive, sustainable and resilient recovery.

Sources: APEC website; Group of Nations website; Reuters

Update: 2020-04-23
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