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APEC aims to boost trade facilitation and supply chain connectivity

Released at: 10:23, 20/05/2017 APEC Viet Nam 2017

APEC aims to boost trade facilitation and supply chain connectivity

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Ho Thi Kim Thoa opens the event. Photo: VNA

Trade facilitation is one of APEC's most important pillars.

by Nguyen Quoc

Opening the third Public-Private Dialogue on Advancing Trade Facilitation and Supply Chain Connectivity through the Asia-Pacific Model E-Port Network (APMEN) in Hanoi on May 19, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Ho Thi Kim Thoa expressed her appreciation of the Initiative on APMEN, which was adopted at the 24th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting in November 2014 in Beijing, China, with the aim of forming a regional trade and supply chain network.

The initiative focuses on identifying measures to increase transparency of supply chains through information technology and communications systems, thus contributing to APEC’s connectivity priorities, in particular enhancing supply and value chain connectivity in order to promote trade facilitation - one of APEC’s most important pillars.

The role of APMEN in realizing the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) and the second phase of the APEC Supply Chain Connectivity Framework Action Plan 2017-2020 drew much attention from dialogue participants.

They agreed that increasing information and experience sharing and policy consultancy plays a key role in the region’s policy cooperation process.

Also on May 19, the two-day Senior Finance Officials’ Meeting held in the northern province of Ninh Binh under the chairmanship of Mr. Vu Nhu Thang, Director General of the International Cooperation Department at the Ministry of Finance, concluded.

According to a press release from the APEC 2017 National Secretariat, in the session on Disaster Risk Financing and Insurance, delegates exchanged views and discussed policy recommendations on disaster risk management, especially on practical experience in formulating policy responses in the areas of fiscal contingencies, standby credit schemes, and stabilization funds, as well as improvements in disaster forecasting and the methodology for disaster risk budgeting. Disaster risk insurance also emerged as a capable financial tool to mitigate the consequences of natural disasters, sustain development, and share risks between the State and the private sector in disaster remedies.


APEC Senior Finance Officials Meeting in Ninh Binh. Photo: apec2017.vn

The meeting recognized the importance of the completion of disaster risk databases, analysis, and supervision of different classes of disaster risks to strengthen disaster risk insurance.

Participants appreciated the active contributions by APEC member economies in providing data on public assets and disaster risk exposure as well as inputs to the model on public asset management and assessment in member economies.

In the session on financial inclusion - finance access in rural and agricultural development, the meeting noted the challenges in financial access in rural and agricultural development and discussed orientations for improving financial access in rural areas to support poverty reduction.

Recommendations discussed to promote financial access will be part of the national financial inclusion strategy, which focuses resources on developing institutional frameworks and basic financial networks and technologies, diversifying financial products and services, promoting financial literacy, and formulating a strategy for customer protection. Priorities for financial inclusion focus on micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, poor farming households, and women. International experience shows that improved financial access and sustainable rural and agricultural development requires three strong pillars: and agriculture bank, bank agents, and micro-finance institutions. Micro-insurance is also an important financial tool to support social welfare and contribute to poverty reduction in rural areas.

In the final session, the meeting was updated on the implementation of APEC initiatives, including the APEC Services Competitiveness Roadmap, the APEC Financial Regulators Training Initiative (FRTI), and an initiative on the mutual recognition of fund management services and ABAC activities.

The meeting also received an update from the APEC 2017 SOM Chair Office as well as a proposal on economic, financial and social inclusion, which will be submitted to the APEC Economic Leaders’ Week in November.

Finance officials were also requested to continue discussions to prepare a report for the upcoming APEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting in October.


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