APEC: Information Technologies Key to Growth
Posted in: Government & Policy at 16/11/2010 17:47
The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation outlined a new growth strategy Sunday that embraces increased use of information and communications technologies (ICT).
Under a five-prong growth strategy, APEC has committed to realizing "smart socioeconomic activity through ICT applications." The growth meme includes promoting digital prosperity through investment in next generation broadband infrastructure; creating conditions ripe for emerging technologies such as cloud computing; and protecting effective privacy protections, among other initiatives.
2010 Leaders' Declaration: The 18th APEC ECONOMIC LEADERS' MEETING
13-14 November 2010
"THE YOKOHAMA VISION - BOGOR AND BEYOND"
We, the Leaders of APEC, gathered in Yokohama under the 2010 theme of "Change and Action" to articulate our vision of further building and integrating the Asia-Pacific region in the 21st Century, and the paths to realize that vision.
APEC's Road Thus Far
Twenty-one years ago, APEC's founders saw the need for greater consultation and cooperation to guide the increasingly interdependent economies of the Asia-Pacific toward a more closely and effectively linked regional economic system. From this new and creative approach was born the consensus, as articulated in the Bogor Goals, that achieving free and open trade and investment is the surest way to accomplish greater common prosperity and stability in the Asia-Pacific region. APEC has since followed the insight of the APEC founders and the direction provided by the Bogor Goals, and the Asia-Pacific region has become a driving force and engine of growth in the world economy.
Through our individual and collective efforts toward achieving the Bogor Goals, the Asia-Pacific region has achieved substantial reductions in barriers to trade and investment. These efforts have led to increased trade and investment flows, sustained economic growth, and a vast improvement in the welfare of people in the region. We are confident that APEC is well on track toward achieving the goal of free and open trade and investment among its economies. This year we conducted a review to assess the achievement of the Bogor Goals by five industrialized economies and eight volunteer developing economies. We endorse the Report on APEC's 2010 Economies' Progress Towards the Bogor Goals and conclude that while more work remains to be done, these 13 economies have made significant progress toward achieving the Bogor Goals.
From 1994 to 2009, APEC economies' total trade in goods grew at 7.1 percent per year while intra-APEC trade tripled over the same period. Foreign direct investment into and out of the APEC region both grew at 13 percent per year from 1994 to 2008. The simple average applied tariff across the region fell from 10.8 percent in 1996 to 6.6 percent in 2008.
Strong progress toward the Bogor Goals of free and open trade and investment has been made possible by the decisions by APEC Leaders to liberalize their own economies, confident that others in APEC would make similar decisions. This confidence to open up domestic economies would not have been possible were it not for the formation of APEC. We reaffirm our unwavering commitment to achieving free and open trade and investment in the region.
Current Opportunities and Challenges
The 21st century presents new promises and new challenges. The global and regional environment is being transformed by the rising influence of the Asia-Pacific region, the development of extensive supply chains, and the rapid adoption of new information and communication technologies. Driven by these changes, our region has become more integrated and interdependent. While this historic transformation has brought about remarkable economic dynamism in the region, events of recent years have shown that crisis can rapidly spread across economies and have a dramatic impact on the entire regional and global economic system, slowing growth and employment.
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